cooking lessons

Vegetable Dip

After this dip, you will not go back to using ranch dip to dip your vegetables in.  Use a verity of vegetables, including carrot, broccoli, cauliflower, celery,  radishes, green onion, and cucumber.  Making the dip at least 8 hours in advance is optimal; it lets the flavors blend.

1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup sour cream
1 Tbs. dry minced onion
1 Tbs. Dry parsley flakes
1 tsp. Dill Weed
1 tsp. Beau Monde Spice

Measure the ingredients and put them all in a bowl, mix thoroughly, cover and refrigerate until served.  Refrigerate overnight for best flavor.  Serve with an assortment of vegetables.

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Tuesday, December 8th, 2009 Vegetable Dip No Comments

Old Fashioned Sugar Cookies

For Tami.

I have been using this sugar cookie recipe for years.  They are a soft cookie full of butter flavor.

1 cup butter, room temperature (not margarine)
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 egg + 2 egg yolks
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 Tbs. cream
1 1/2 cups flour (more for rolled cookies)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking powder
butter cream frosting (recipe following)

Cream together the butter and sugar.  Add the egg, egg yolks, vanilla, and cream and mix till smooth and creamy.  Combine flour, salt, and baking powder and mix into sugar mixture.  Stir well until well combined.  To make rolled cookies, slowly add more flour, one Tablespoon at a time until dough looses it’s stickiness; careful not to add too much or the cookies will be hard and dry.  You can cover and refrigerate at this time if you want to bake them later. (if refrigerated, let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before rolling it out).

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Lightly flour your work surface and put about 1/3 of the dough on the floured area, keeping the remaining dough covered with plastic wrap so it doesn’t dry out.  Lightly work the dough until it can be easily rolled out, making sure the surface is floured enough so the dough doesn’t stick to it.  Fold the dough several times, keep the dough floured so the rolling pin doesn’t stick and roll it to about 1/2 inch thick (don’t roll too thin).  Put about 1/4 cup of flour on your work surface.  Tap the cookie cutters in the flour and cut your shapes, making sure to tap the cookie cutters in the flour before cutting the dough each time so they don’t get dough stuck to them.  Transfer each cookies to an ungreased cookie sheet with a pancake turner and bake for about 8 minutes or until the cookie just starts to turn a golden color on the edges.  If baked too long, the cookie will be crispy instead of soft.  After removing the cookies from the oven, let them sit on the pan for a couple minutes then remove them and place on a cooling rack.  Add another bit of fresh dough to the rolled out left over bits and mix them together then roll the dough as before.  After cutting more cookies, continue adding fresh dough until all dough is used.

After the cookies are cooled, make frosting and frost them and decorate them.  put the frosted cookies in a single layer on a cookie sheet and put them in the freezer until the frosting is hard.  Put the frozen cookies in a bag and store in the freezer.  When ready to serve, put the cookies out on a plate and allow to thaw.  I find freezing the cookies keeps them soft.

Butter Cream Frosting

2 Tbs. butter, melted
4 Tbs. cream
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
powder sugar

Mix the butter, cream, and vanilla in a bowl.  Add powder sugar starting with one cup of powder sugar, then add a little more at a time until frosting is slightly firm but not too stiff to spread easily.  After frosting each cookie, sprinkle with colored sugar sprinkles.  If you wait until after all cookies are frosted before decorating, the frosting will be too dry and the sprinkles won’t stick.  Make more frosting if needed.

* Make sure you use pure vanilla extract for best flavor.

Cookie recipe from an old Fanny Farmer Cookbook.

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Saturday, December 5th, 2009 Old Fashioned Sugar Cookies No Comments

In-Home cooking Lessons

Have you thought of taking in-home cooking lessons?  Cooking lessons scheduled by you to take at your convenience.  Cooking lessons that allow you plan, cook, then serve what you prepare to your family and/or friends. My name is Beth Purdy, I live in Boise, Idaho and would like to offer you in-home cooking lessons.

Who would benefit from lessons with me?

A person:

* Wanting to learn a technique
* Newly married without much cooking experience
* Recently single
* Wanting to learn the basics
* Who knows the basics but wants to learn more
* Wanting to gain more confidence in the kitchen

Do you want to learn to cook and be able to share your accomplishments with those you love or just make something good to eat?

I learned to cook at an early age and know the value of preparing your own meals and the pride you experience when family and friends enjoy the food you create.  Teaching the basics and more advanced dishes is an exciting prospect for me. With more than 40 years of experience, I can share, with you, my knowledge and passion for cooking.

Consultation about your menu, one-on-one instruction in your home.  You buy the ingredients, learn in a familiar kitchen, then keep the food you prepare for yourself and your family.


1. Discuss with me your cooking ability and what you would like to accomplish in your lesson.
2. Give me ideas on what type of dish or meal you would like to create.
3. Discuss recipes, ingredients, and utensils you would need to accomplish your goal.
4. Make a shopping list.
5. Have fun creating something to eat.

$30 for one person (*$35 for a couple) for up to 1 1/2 hours
* $10 more if it takes longer (up to an extra hour)
Package of 5 lessons for $135 (*$150 for couples)

EXTRA:  If I do the shopping for ingredients, the cost would be $10 plus the cost of the ingredients.


* Learn basics
* Learn to make a special dish
* Learn to make a desert
* Create a meal

Available weekdays after 5:30 and weekends in the Boise, Idaho area.

(208) 631-2673

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Wednesday, November 18th, 2009 In-Home Cooking Lessons No Comments