October 31

Chocolate Cake and Boutique Talk

The Very Best Chocolate CakeOctober 14th

To: sarahcooks@gmail.com

From: sallyrayjones@gmail.com

Hi Sarah

Thanks for recapping the notes from the club meeting.   I did speak to Krissy yesterday and she is coming to the next club meeting which as you know is scheduled right after pot luck dinner.

Speaking of  Pot Luck Friday I still need a dessert are you willing to try a new Chocolate Cake Recipe?   I found this in my Grandma’s old church book.   I would make it but I am making the main meal and between that and helping Joe make the teams year end party awards I need some help?  If you cannot do it I was thinking about asking Krissy to make her award winning chocolate chip cookies?

Thanks and let me know

Sally Ray

October 14th

To: sallyrayjones@gmail.com

from: sarahcooks@gmail.com

Of course I can make the cake for Friday…. You know cake is my specialty thank you for asking.   Just send me over the recipe and I will make it in the AM on Friday.  How many people do we have reservations for?

I have been asking Krissy to come to a meeting for how long?  Do you think she does not like me?   I will ask her on Friday before the meeting I know at times I can be a bit loud.

By the way did you see Krissy’s car at Mark’s again last night?  I notice it’s not there in the AM so maybe they are just friends.  What a cute couple they make.   I heard from Earl that Mark does not date (men or women).   Such a shame a handsome man like Mark.    I wonder if he will be helping Krissy with the huge project she is taking on…. A restaurant and a boutique?

As you know I was talking about doing that same thing in town opening a local gourmet boutique.     I just be Laura told Krissy about my plans and that spurred her idea to do this.     I have to be honest I am a little taken back by her doing exactly what I was thinking about  doing in addition to a restaurant. 7G58BUZEUDN7

Anyway send me over the recipe I am sure I will add my special touch to it.

See you Friday.


Oct 14th

To: sarahcooks@gmail.com

From: sallyrayjone@gmail.com

I am running out the door so I have to make this quick … Here is the recipe and really Sarah just be happy for the town, club, and Krissy.    Why don’t you send Krissy a note with your idea’s you never know maybe she will hire you?

Oh and about the cake can you do a blueberry drizzle and bring some whipped cream?

Very Best Chocolate Cake

3 cups flour                         1 cup oil (I used olive oil for baking)

2 cups sugar                          1 tsp salt

2 tsp baking powder          2 tsp vanilla

1/2 cup cocoa                      2 cups cold water

2 tsp vinegar                          2 eggs

Put all ingredients together in one bowl.  Mix well.  Pour into greased and floured 9×13 baking dish.  Bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until cake springs back and does not wiggle in the middle.   Perfect for cupcakes or layer cake also.

Must Run

Sally Ray





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October 27

Falling in Love with Tomatoes

In the Meantime in Churchville Krissy and Mark have been spending almost every evening together cooking and drinking wine.  Last weekend they taught each other to can tomatoes.    The simple act of making something for the future hit Krissy hard and she sent this note to her sister Jane.

“The heat coming off the tomatoes about drove me crazy.   His strong hands working to gently peel the tomatoes and his strong arms lifting the pots I wanted so badly for him to take me in his arms and hold me forever.  I know Sis I am the one that told him I am only interested in being friends.  That I don’t stay in one spot for long.  But I feel it more and more each day this is my home I am staying in Churchville and I am in love.  But now what do I do I want him to love me back?”

Krissy’s Famous Spaghetti  Sauce with Home Canned Tomatoes (she calls it Naked Tomato Sauce)

2 quart jars of canned tomatoes
3/4 teaspoon coarse salt

2 large clove garlic, thinly sliced

Pinch of red pepper flakes
Small handful basil leaves, most left whole, a few slivered for garnish
1/4 cup olive oil
12 ounces (3/4 pound) dried spaghetti
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, or maybe two if nobody is looking

Add  the canned tomatoes and salt to a large saucepan (you’ll be adding the pasta to this later, so err on the big side) and turn the heat to medium-high. There are several ways to break the tomatoes down (with your hands, chopping, an immersion blender that I don’t think Italian Grandmothers would approve of but don’t worry, they’re not in the kitchen with you anyway) but Krissy used a potato masher, as it gives you the maximum control over how chunky, smooth you want your sauce.

Once the sauce has begun to boil, turn your heat down to medium-low and gently simmer your tomatoes for 35 to 45 minutes, mashing them more  if needed.

While the tomato sauce cooks, combine garlic, a few whole basil leaves, a pinch of red pepper flakes and 1/4 cup olive oil in a small saucepan. Heat them slowly, over the lowest heat so that they take a long time to come to a simmer. Once it does, immediately remove it from the heat and strain the oil into a small dish. You’ll need it shortly.

When the tomato sauce has been simmering for about 25 minutes, bring your tomato-blanching pot of water back to a boil with a healthy helping of salt. Once boiling rapidly, cook your spaghetti until it is al dente, i.e. it could use another minute of cooking time. Reserve a half-cup of pasta cooking water and drain the rest.

Once your sauce is cooked to the consistency you like, stir in the reserved olive oil and adjust seasonings to taste. Add drained spaghetti and half the reserved pasta water to the simmering tomato sauce and cook them together for another minute or two. Add remaining pasta water if needed to loosen the sauce. Stir in the butter, if using, and serve immediately with slivered basil for garnish.   This sauce is so simple and good it needs no grated cheese.

Serve with Warm Baguette.

Adapted from the Smitten Kitchen. 



Category: Church Cooks, Krissy Carpenter, Mark Brothers | Comments Off on Falling in Love with Tomatoes
October 24

Popovers and Pop Over

To: sarahcooks@gmail.com


September 30th

Hi Sarah,

Wow you have been busy busy cooking for all the construction workers in and around town.   How many cook books have you sold?  What a great idea having them buy one and take home to their Mom’s.   Remember make sure you paste that address to our website inside the front cover.

As much excitement as all the workers have bought to town I will be glad when they are done.   The noise and closed roads are driving me to drink more wine.   Speaking of wine I have been meaning to share with you an online service I signed up for www.nakedwines.com.  When you register you get all kinds of free wine and best part is they deliver right to your front door.

I have contacted them to see if we could do some type of a fundraiser near the Holidays.   Also thinking maybe we could get them to advertise in your book next year?

I spoke to Krissy about her buying the old mining  building and opening a restaurant and she is very open to collaborating with us I will go over what we discussed in our club meeting tomorrow.

See you tomorrow.

PS Krissy did say she loved the Popover’s we served at the Potluck so much she is going to bake them instead of bread at her new place.

Church Cooks Opening Soon And Serving Popovers!

Makes 12.

Note: Allowing the batter to rest for 15 to 30 minutes before dividing into preheated pans will make for a lighter, more tender popover. Adapted from “The Marshall Field’s Cookbook” by Krissy Carpenter.

• 5 eggs (about 1 c.)

• 1 2/3 c. whole milk

5 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted

• 1 2/3 c. flour

• 1/2 tsp. salt


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly coat popover pans or deep muffin tins with nonstick cooking spray or butter and preheat pans in oven for at least 15 minutes (covering pans with aluminum foil will keep cooking spray from splattering).

In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat eggs until frothy. Add milk and butter and mix well. Reduce speed to low and add flour and salt and mix until just combined.

Divide batter among preheated pans, filling each cup just under half full (fill empty cups halfway with water). Bake for 30 to 40 minutes — do not open oven door — until popovers are puffy and well-browned.

Remove from oven, transfer pans to a wire rack and cool 2 minutes. Popovers should pull away from the pan easily; if not, use a dull-bladed knife to nudge them from the pan. Serve warm.


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October 19

It’s Just About Potluck Friday!

Dear Krissy,

I need a favor in order to keep peace within the club and for that matter the town.  As you know the Church Cook Book is a big part of this town and has been for years.   Anyway I had coffee with Sarah and she is all in a tizz over the fact that you may be opening a restaurant in the old mining building in town?  I would like to stop the rumors and better yet talk with you about joining the club and having the club be apart of plan??

I totally know that is a BIG ask but I think if we talk you will like some of the idea’s I have.

Coffee 9AM tomorrow?

PS Thought I would share this recipe with you I made it last night and would love your feedback I am thinking about submitting this year I got it off my FAVORITE site www.smittenkitchen.com.  I used broccoli as it’s all I could find in town.

To: krissycarpenter@eatcreatedesign.com

From: sallyrayjones@gmail.com


Baked Pasta with Broccoli Rabe and Sausage

Important: This is my dream of a baked pasta dish — not too heavy, not to rich or gooey, tons of crunchy edges. As you might see in the photos above, it’s on the firm side. If you’d like a baked pasta with more sauce, which I expect most of you will, you’ll want to use 1 1/2 times the bechamel and cheese below.

Broccoli rabe (also called raab or rapini) is a leafy green vegetable with buds that somewhat resemble broccoli. It’s slightly bitter and holds up well to cooking. If you can’t find it, regular broccoli or broccolini will work here as well; they will only need 3 and 2 minutes respectively of boiling time with the pasta to keep it semi-crisp. If you’d like to make this without meat, the sausage can definitely be omitted. You could add some lightly sauteed chunky brown mushrooms for extra bulk, as well.

The pasta shape I used here is called toscani and it’s from the brand Seggiano. I have found it at Whole Foods and, if you’re in the East Village, Commodities Natural Market on 1st Ave. (plus I’m sure other stores). When I can’t get, it I use Barilla’s similarcampanelle or seriously any chunky pasta you like to bake with.

Pasta and assembly
1 pound chunky pasta of your choice (I love bell shapes; see above for details)
1 bundle broccoli rabe (see above for options), stems and leaves cut into 1-inch segment

1 pound Italian sausage (sweet or spicy pork or chicken), casings removed

2/3 cup grated parmesan or pecorino romano cheese
6 ounces mozzarella, cut into small cubes

2 cups milk, full fat is ideal
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon table salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
Few gratings fresh nutmeg

Cook the pasta and rabe: Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Add pasta and five minutes before its cooking time is up, add the broccoli rabe. It will seem like too much for the water, but with a stir or two, the rabe should wilt and cook alongside the pasta. Drain the broccoli rabe and pasta together and place in a large bowl.

Cook your sausage: Meanwhile, heat 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large, wide saucepan (you will use this for the bechamel in a few minutes; you could also use your pasta pot, once it is drained) over medium heat. When hot, add the sausage, breaking it up with a wooden spoon until it starts to brown, about five minutes. Remove with slotted spoon or spatula, leaving any fat behind. Eyeball the drippings (pork sausage will leave some; chicken usually does not) — use one tablespoon less butter next if it looks like there’s a tablespoon there. Any less, don’t worry about adjusting the butter.

Heat oven to 400 degrees.

Make the bechamel: Melt your butter in same saucepan over medium heat. Once melted, add your flour and stir it into the butter until smooth. Cook the mixture together for a minute, stirring constantly. Pour in a small drizzle of your milk, whisking constantly into the butter-flour mixture until smooth. Continue to drizzle a very small amount at a time, whisking constantly. Once you’ve added a little over half of your milk, you’ll find that you have more of a thick sauce or batter, and you can start adding the milk in larger splashes, being sure to keep mixing. Once all of the milk is added, add the salt, garlic, nutmeg, and few grinds of black pepper, and bring the mixture to a lower simmer and cook it, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings if needed.

Assemble and bake: Add the sausage and bechamel to the bowl with the pasta and broccoli rabe. Stir in mozzarella and half of grated parmesan or pecorino until combined. Pour into a lasagna pan, deep 9×13-inch baking dish* or 3-quart casserole dish and coat with remaining parmesan or pecorino. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, until the edges and craggy points are nicely bronzed.

Eat warm. Reheat as needed.



Article source : http://smittenkitchen.com/blog/2013/09/baked-pasta-with-broccoli-rabe-and-sausage/

Read more : http://smittenkitchen.com/blog/2013/09/baked-pasta-with-broccoli-rabe-and-sausage/

Category: Church Cooks, Krissy Carpenter | Comments Off on It’s Just About Potluck Friday!
October 2

Krissy’s Letters To Her Mom Dear Diary

Mom call me crazy but  I think I am falling in love.  I wish you were here so we could talk and I could tell you about Mark.   He is handsome and funny.  Best part of all he has money of his own.   I feel paralyzed having the burden of so much money and after what happened with Mike how would I ever know if someone loves me back for me?

I wish 1000 times over Auntie would have just given the money to Charity.   Maybe when I settle in a bit more I can learn to appreciate the responsibility and can really make a difference just as Auntie wanted.  I guess in many ways follow in her foot steps and yours.  I miss you guys so much it hurts.


Mark and I went to the fair and we spend an entire day just goofing around and eating.   We even rode a bull my legs still hurt.  I had the best pulled pork I need to figure out how to do that.

Speaking of food I am really thinking about buy that old place down off of main street and opening a St. Marta Cook Book restaurant and Inn.  What do you think of calling it Church Cooks?

I have to go the Nadal match just started.  He is dreamy.  Mom do you think I am finally boy crazy?

PS I joined the St. Marta’s women’s book club can you believe it?   We are reading Butterfly Sister.

Miss you Mom give Auntie a hug for me.



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September 30

It’s Time For Fun In Churchville

September 4

Hi Mark

I was wondering if you want to go the fair this weekend with me.  I could get some tickets to the rodeo Saturday night.  If we leave about 11AM we could make it into the fair by 12ish?

Do you mind driving that fancy car you have it’s going to be extra nice out and we can ride with the top down?

PS I have been officially invited to St. Marta’s Book Club?  I think I will join as I have decided to make it apart of my research, the women in this town.  Plus you never know maybe it will be en-lighting.

The book they are reading this month is the Butter Fly Sister.

To: krissycarpenter@eatcreatedesign.com

From: markbrothers@gmail.com

I will go to the fair with you only if you will walk machinery hill with me at the fair.  Rodeo sound great been thinking about getting some horses for awhile now?

I see that farm is for sale just out of town.  We should go take a look?

I will pick you up in my “fancy car” as you call it at 11 only if you have coffee for the ride.

PS What about dinner Friday night in town I am in the mood for  Greasy Burgers.

Category: Church Cooks, Krissy Carpenter | Comments Off on It’s Time For Fun In Churchville