April Supper Club

The menu: Sauce & Sinatra

The menu: Sauce & Sinatra

Charcuterie Board

Charcuterie Board with homemade Rosemary Olive Oil Flatbread

Mini Caprese Skewers

Mini Caprese Skewers

Shitake, Basil & Lemon Cauliflower Pizzas

Shitake, Basil & Lemon/Margarita/Carmelized Onion & Spicy Sausage Cauliflower Pizzas

Mama Fiorella's Bolognese

Mama Fiorella’s Bolognese

The table setting

The table setting

Noms

Clockwise from top: Homemade Focaccia, Penne & Bolognese, Pancetta Brussels Sprouts, Fried Cardoons

Homemade Limencello

Homemade Limencello

Cannoli

Yummy Cannoli!

Supper Club

Supper Club Guests, minus two people

April was all about old world Italian. From cardoons to bolognese to limoncello, we covered a lot of regional specialties and practically had to be rolled out of our hostesses house! Luckily, about half of us come from Italian backgrounds so we were really able to flex our culinary muscles this SCB.

I opted for making an Italian charcuterie board. The cheese portion of the charcuterie board consisted of Rustico Black Pepper Cheese, Langa Castelbelbo, Piave (my personal favorite), Miti Sottocenere with Truffles and Ricotta Salata. I found all my cheese at Wegmans after consulting with one of our SCB members who used to work in their Cheese Shop. I learned the key to creating a good cheese board is you want to have a good balance of flavors (from strong to mild), textures (soft, semi-soft, semi-hard and hard), colors, shapes and sizes. For the meats, I added Felino, Genoa Salame and Riserva Prosciutto. I rounded my board out with some kalamata olives and made some delicious Rosemary Olive Oil flatbread to accompany it.

Rosemary Olive Oil Flatbread
adapted from Epicurious.com

  • 1 3/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup olive oil plus more for brushing
  • sea salt

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. In a medium bowl, mix flour, rosemary, baking powder and salt. Make a well in the center, then add water and oil and gradually stir into flour with a wooden spoon until a dough forms. Knead dough gently on a work surface 4 or 5 times. Divide dough into 3 pieces and roll out 1 piece at a time into a 10-inch round. The shape can be rustic and the dough should be thin. Lightly brush the tops with additional oil and scatter small clusters of rosemary leaves on top, pressing in slightly. Sprinkle with sea salt. Transfer rounds onto a foil-lined baking sheet and bake until pale golden and browned in spots, 8 to 10 minutes.

March Supper Club

the menu

the menu

the spread

the spread

plate full of yummies!

plate full of yummies!

japanese fried rice

japanese fried rice

obligatory (asian??) monkey bread

obligatory (asian??) monkey bread

cards against humanity, iphones and drinks around the table

cards against humanity, iphones and drinks around the table

March’s theme was Oriental Delights. Each of us went out of our comfort zone and picked dishes that we hadn’t made before. The host had pillows set up on the floor and we dined in a laid back Asian fashion. There were spring rolls, a crunchy Asian salad that consisted of broken, uncooked ramen noodles, broccoli and slivered almonds, Thai chicken satay served with cucumbers and peanut dipping sauce, Shu Mai (steamed Asian dumplings), chicken pad Thai and slow cooker Asian beef tacos. I took the easy route and made Japanese fried rice. Although it required minimal effort, it was still pretty tasty. It serves A LOT so my hubby ended up with a ton of leftovers which he didn’t complain about.

Japanese Fried Rice

  • 4 cups white or brown rice
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup frozen peas and carrots
  • 1/2 cup onion, diced
  • 2 eggs, scrambled and diced
  • 5 tablespoons soy sauce
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

First, go to Wegmans or similar and buy two large containers of precooked white rice from the Asian food station. Then stop at a Chinese restaurant and asked for takeout containers and chopsticks for serving. Next, in a large wok add butter, onions, peas and carrots and stir over high heat until cooked. Add rice and remaining ingredients and continue stirring for about 20-30 minutes until all ingredients are cooked. Season to taste and serve warm.

February Supper Club

the tablescapethe tablescape

february attendeesfebruary attendees

the spreadthe spread consisted of parmesan-parsley fries, two versions of quinoa sliders (avocado & red onion with cilantro-lime aioli & pesto with goat cheese & spinach), apple pecan chicken salad, panko-crusted chicken tenders with various dipping sauces, DIY black bean tacos with accoutrements, mini Baileys Irish Cream-glazed chocolate doughnuts with Baileys-coffee shooters, chocolate chip & Baileys-spiked milkshakes and funfetti & cake vodka milkshakes. HOLY MOSES!

parmesan-parsley friesparmesan-parsley fries

quinoa sliderstwo versions of quinoa sliders (avocado & red onion with cilantro-lime aioli & pesto with goat cheese & spinach)

apple pecan chicken saladapple pecan chicken salad

panko-crusted chicken tenderspanko-crusted chicken tenders with various dipping sauces

mini donuts with baileys and coffee shootersmini Baileys Irish Cream-glazed chocolate doughnuts with Baileys-coffee shooters

spiked milkshakeschocolate chip & Baileys-spiked milkshakes and funfetti & cake vodka milkshakes (unshown)

February’s theme was Reinvented Take-out and we know just how much take-out food is all our guilty pleasures. Each of us picked our favorite fast food option and made it ourselves. They even got a tiny bit healthier, but only by a little. From burgers to fries, to salads to tacos, fast food was well represented in this spread. I made mini Baileys Irish Cream-glazed chocolate doughnuts with Baileys-coffee shooters for which I had to buy special pans and stockpile a collection of shot glasses (which really wasn’t all that hard). The original recipe came with the special doughnut pans I purchased and then I adapted to add some Baileys into the mix.

Baked Mini Baileys Irish Cream-glazed Chocolate Doughnuts

For the Chocolate Mini Doughnuts

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons butter, melted

For the Baileys Irish Cream Glaze

  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons Baileys Irish Cream Liqueur (I used Hazelnut flavored)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 425F. Spray mini doughnut pan with nonstick cooking spray.  In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add buttermilk, egg and butter and stir until just combined. To fill the donut pan, scoop batter into a large ziplock bag and snip off the tip. Fill each doughnut cup approximately 1/3- 1/2 full. The batter will rise quite a bit during baking. Bake 4-6 minutes or until the top of the doughnuts spring back when touched. Cool in pan 1-2 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack. When doughnuts are cooled, stir together sugar, Baileys and vanilla extract. Dip each doughnut in glaze, then set on a plate or baking sheet. Allow to dry for a few minutes and then dip each doughnut in glaze again. Serve with coffee and more Baileys!

January Supper Club

the lovely tablescape

the lovely tablescape

the menu (minus Marscarpone Stuffed French Toast)

the menu (minus Marscarpone Stuffed French Toast)

Smoked Salmon Toasts

Smoked Salmon Toasts

Yogurt Parfaits

Yogurt Parfaits

Sweet Potato & Ham Hash

Sweet Potato & Ham Hash

Bacon, Egg and Toast Cups

Bacon, Egg and Toast Cups

Bacon, Egg and Toast Cups (close up)

Bacon, Egg and Toast Cups (close up)

Oatmeal Fried Bananas

Oatmeal Fried Bananas

Bacon, Corn Muffins with Savory Cream Cheese Frosting

Bacon, Corn Muffins with Savory Cream Cheese Frosting

Blueberry-Pomegranate Mimosas

Blueberry-Pomegranate Mimosas

L to R: Marscarpone Stuffed French Toast, Oatmeal Fried Banana, Sweet Potato & Ham Hash

L to R: Marscarpone Stuffed French Toast, Oatmeal Fried Banana, Sweet Potato & Ham Hash

Monkey Bread

Monkey Bread

lovely SCB ladies

lovely SCB ladies

Things have been super busy so I apologize for the lack of posts, but the truth is, I haven’t been cooking that much. *gasp!* Not having the CSA has really stalled my creativity in the kitchen (no pun intended) so I’m thankful for supper club to keep things exciting through the rest of the winter.

The theme for this one was Breakfast for Dinner and, man, did we really knock it out of the park. Alicia was a lovely host and her place near the Elmwood Village was simply fantastic, as you can see from the pictures. Everything tasted delicious and came together surprisingly well for not knowing what other people were making.

December Supper Club Buffalo

I’d like to start out the new year by thanking everyone who reads my blog for all your love and support. With absolutely no idea what I was doing, I started this blog a year ago as a new year’s resolution. I couldn’t be more happy that people not only read it, but actually enjoy it. Over the past year I’ve learned a lot, namely how to take better pictures (some of my old posts are REALLY ugly with iPhone-only pics), but also how to open myself up without being scared of what people might think. It’s been a challenging, yet fun and rewarding journey and I am looking forward to continuing that! To keep the positive momentum going, check out my interview on Buffalo Eats, a WNY-based food blog, where I’m now listed as a Buffalo Foodie. Woot woot! Also check out my interview with Channel 7 about a new food market that opened in Buffalo. Special thanks to my techie husband for recording it and figuring out how to post it to YouTube! Yea, I’m pretty popular these days. Ha!

Ok, enough of the self-promoting. Onto the fun stuff. BOOZE! That was the theme for our third installment of Supper Club Buffalo. Each dish needed to incorporate alcohol into it which wasn’t very hard to do for all us boozers. I made Penne alla Vodka without the sausage. I’m over a month behind on posting this, but hey, better late than never, right? Oh, and sorry for all the Instagram/iPhone pics, but that’s all I have.

the menu

the menu

some booze to go with our booze

some booze to go with our booze

cute favors from our crafty hostess

cute favors from our crafty hostess

tablescape

lovely tablescape

lovely ladies!

lovely ladies!

my penne alla vodka dish

penne alla vodka

guinness braised quiche

guinness braised onion and aged white cheddar quiche

drunken dueling chickens

drunken (and dueling!) chicken

drool-worthy tiramisu!

drool-worthy tiramisu!

Yum!

Twice Baked Winter Squash Gratin

attendees for the November Supper Club

attendees for the November Supper Club

the delicious menu

the delicious menu

Twice Baked Winter Squash Gratin

For our second Supper Club our host chose Crockpot and Stovetop dishes as her theme, as she is in the middle of a kitchen renovation. While this dish was neither (no one ever said I was good at following the rules), I figured I could just bring it over hot. I had (and still currently have) so much winter squash left from my farm share that I really needed to use it up. And since the hubs doesn’t eat it, this was really the only opportunity I had to use some of it up. It came out pretty good for just winging it! The only issue I ran into was when I was running the onions through the food processor. They kept getting stuck around the blades so I needed to make sure to check that those got pureed. Other than that, this dish was delish!

Twice Baked Winter Squash Gratin

  • 1 butternut squash, acorn squash and red kuri squash (or any other combination)
  • 4 small onions
  • 3-4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, plus 3 tablespoons extra
  • pinch of fresh or dried parsley

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Slice squash in half, scoop out seeds and cut the onions in half. Coat the cut sides with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Lay the squash halves, cut-side down, on a baking sheet. Place the onions under each squash cavity and place in the oven. Roast until very soft and fork tender, 35 to 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside until cool enough to handle. Scoop out the flesh from the squash halves and place in food processor with the roasted onions. Purée until smooth. Transfer to a large bowl and mix with ricotta and parmesan cheese until well incorporated. Add more salt and pepper if needed. Fill a shallow dish with mixture. Sprinkle the top with remaining parmesan cheese, parsley and a light drizzle of olive oil. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Place under broiler for 5 more minutes, until top of gratin has browned.

Roasted Acorn Squash Stuffed with Sausage, Quinoa and Apple

Supper Club Place Setting

Service for 10!

Supper Club Menu

The menu!

Supper Club Attendees

The gorgeous group of attendees!

Sausage, Quinoa and Apple Stuffed Acorn Squash

Sausage, Quinoa and Apple Stuffed Acorn Squash

I mentioned last week that I hosted my first-ever Supper Club. As the host, I was responsible for the main dish and everyone else brought sides that went with our theme for the month, Fall. I decided to go with stuffed acorn squash because I could make all the ingredients the night before and just reheat the day of. I’d say it worked out pretty well. So well that we ate and drank ourselves into mini food comas and we even had leftovers for a few days. Bonus!

Roasted Acorn Squash Stuffed with Sausage, Quinoa and Apple

  • 6 acorn squash, rinsed
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1-1/2 pounds spicy chicken sausage, casings removed
  • 2 Fuji apples, peeled, cored and diced
  • 1 small green pepper, diced
  • 1 small jalapeño, minced
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut each squash in half crosswise; scoop out seeds and save for Roasted Acorn Squash Seeds. Cut a thin slice off the bottom of each half so they can stand upright. Season the inside of each squash well with some of the olive oil, salt and pepper. Place each half, cavity side down on a cookie sheet and bake until tender when pierced, about 45 to 50 minutes. Meanwhile, in a medium skillet over medium-high heat, add remaining olive oil, chicken sausage, apples, peppers, jalapeño, onions, garlic, shallots, salt and pepper. Stir often until apples are tender when pierced, about 8 to 10 minutes. Cook quinoa according to package directions, substituting the chicken broth for water. When cooked, add quinoa to the apple-sausage mixture. Fill each squash equally with sausage-quinoa-apple mixture and bake, uncovered, until filling is slightly browned on top, about 15 minutes longer.

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