Recipe of the Month

The cooks at our schools aren't the only members of the Opaa! family with culinary flair. In fact, each month we feature frequently requested, unique and tasty recipes submitted by fellow Opaa! employees. We hope you enjoy this month's selection:

INGREDIENTS Irish Soda Bread Photo

4 cup Flour
4 tbsp Sugar
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tbsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 cup softened Butter
1/4 cup melted Butter
1 1/4 cup Buttermilk
1 Egg

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 375.

Grease a baking sheet.

Mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

Add 1/2 cup butter, 1 cup buttermilk and egg to dry ingredients and mix until combined.

Flour work surface.

Turn out dough and knead briefly.

Shape dough into a round shape and place on prepared sheet.

Whisk together 1/4 cup melted butter with 1/4 cup buttermilk.

Brush loaf with buttermilk mixture.

Cut an X in the top of the loaf.

Bake 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.

Brush with buttermilk mixture every 15 minutes or so while baking.

Serves 2   Lava Cake Photo

INGREDIENTS
4 ounces semisweet baking chocolate, chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for greasing custard cups
2 tablespoons sugar, plus more for the custard cups
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

PREPARATION
1. Preheat oven to 425°F, and grease two 6 to 8-ounce custard cups or ramekins generously with butter. Put a small spoonful of sugar in each cup, then turn the cup sideways and rotate it so that the sugar is coating the butter all around. Dump out any excess sugar. Place the greased cups on a baking sheet or oven safe dish.

2. Put the chopped chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave it on high for 30 seconds, take it out and stir it, then microwave it for another 30 seconds and stir it again. It should be completely melted. If there are still chunks of unmelted chocolate, microwave for another 20 seconds and stir.

3. In a medium mixing bowl, cream the room temperature butter and the sugar with an electric mixer or a rubber spatula. The mixture should be thoroughly combined, smooth, and paste-like, not lumpy.

4. Add the two eggs to the creamed butter and sugar, and beat it with the electric mixer or a whisk until everything is combined and the mixture is starting to foam, about a minute. Add the flour and salt, and again beat everything with the mixer until it’s thoroughly mixed.

5. Add about 1/3 of the melted chocolate to the mixture in the mixing bowl, then use a rubber spatula to gently fold it in. Add the rest of the chocolate mixture, and fold together until you have a uniform batter with no streaks.

6. Divide the batter evenly between the two greased custard cups, then bake the cakes in the preheated oven until the tops are just set but the cakes still jiggle slightly when you shake them, about 11 minutes.

7. Let the finished cakes sit in cups for five minutes when they’re finished baking. Then, flip each cup over on a dessert plate, and tap the bottoms of the cups so that the cakes fall out.

8. Serve immediately. If you want, you can garnish them with powdered sugar, whipped cream, and berries.

IngredientsTomato Basil Soup Photo

  • 1 lb. cherry tomatoes
  • 2 lbs. Roma tomatoes cut in half
  • 1 medium onion, cut into chunks
  • 7 garlic cloves
  • 3 large carrots, cut in half
  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 4 cups vegetables broth (or chicken broth)
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2-3 tablespoons basil pesto

Instructions

  1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 375ºF. Place the cherry tomatoes, Roma tomatoes, onions, garlic, and carrots on one large baking sheet. It's okay if some of the ingredients are overlapping. Drizzle the olive oil along with a big pinch of salt and pepper and give it a good toss. Place the baking tray in the oven and allow the ingredients to bake for 1 hour. Check on the ingredients every 30 minutes and give it a toss.
  2. Transfer the ingredients along with any juices from the baking tray to a blender and blend the veggies until they are completely smooth. If you've got a super powerful blender it will go in one batch and be super quick. If you've got a regular blender, you may need to add a little broth to help it along. For super smooth soup, run the puree through a strainer to get rid of any larger pieces.
  3. Transfer the puree into a large dutch oven over medium heat. Add the chicken broth and allow the soup to heat all the way through, about 5-7 minutes. Add the balsamic vinegar, red pepper flakes. Add two tablespoons of the pesto and give the soup a taste. If desired, add the third tablespoon. I used 3 in total because I love a little extra punch of basil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with cheese toasts.

Serves: 8 Servings

Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Ingredients

  • 2 lb. Brussels Sprouts, halved
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • ½ tsp. black pepper
  • ½ tsp. mustard seeds
  • 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 2 tsp. Dijon mustard

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F and line a baking sheet with foil.
  2. In a large bowl, toss together Brussels Sprouts, red onion, olive oil, salt, pepper and mustard seeds. Transfer to preparedbaking sheet and spread out evenly.
  3. Roast veggies for 25 to 30 minutes, stirring only once in between, until sprouts are tender and slightly browned.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together balsamic vinegar, honey and Dijon and drizzle over roasted veggies. Serve and enjoy!

Fully Loaded Sweet Potatoes Photo Nov 16

Yield: 4 potatoes

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour 5 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 4 large sweet potatoes
  • 6 tablespoons butter, sliced
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 400°F. Wrap sweet potatoes with foil and place on a baking sheet. Bake for 1 hour, or until soft when squeezed.
  • Remove sweet potatoes from oven, but leave oven on. Take sweet potatoes out of foil and return to baking sheet. Slice the center of the potato and press on the sides to create an opening.
  • Stuff each potato with sliced butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, pecans and marshmallows (in that order). Return to oven for 5 minutes, or until marshmallows are lightly browned. Serve immediately!