Category Archives: Classes

Unwinding after a great Mexican Fiesta Dinner class, and trying to assimilate the info (delivered during class by a city staffer) that bin Laden is dead… Its been almost 10 years since 9/11/01 and for all that time we had been looking for him, or not looking, getting side tracked – caught up in other issues… and now he is dead… I remember thinking we go in get this guy and move on… how hard can it be?  you are a day late with a check for any bill or returning a library book and they find you – BUT this is CA, and that is a different world with different priorities and points of view.  I wonder if this will change what we do next, how we handle our involvement in the middle east, once I thought it would – now I am not so sure.

But on a foodie note!  Mexican class was really good! enchiladas, chile rellanos (my favorite!) and salsa, guacamole….. and mango ice… so nice!  I really love this class, we all know and love this food and some think it is so difficult it is fun to have folks see just how easy it is.


I have a gardening series class going on right now, it is fun to interact with new gardeners it is like seeing the world through a kid’s eyes everything is exciting and new.  We have meet 3 times, planning, plants and compost – I brought my worms last week!  Each week I like to bring a “munchie” using something from my garden.  So thought I would share the recipes here.  2 weeks ago I brought a lemon cookie, I cut the recipe out of a magazine,  it was from 12/2006 and am finally trying it …

Grandma Babe’s Lemon Knots


1/2 cup granulated sugar

6 tablespoons butter softened

1 tablespoon finely grated lemon rind

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

2 large eggs

3 cups flour (about 13 1/2 ounces)

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

cooking spray


2 cups powdered sugar

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon low-fat buttermilk

1. Preheat oven to 375

2. to prepare cookies, place granulated sugar and butter in a large bowl, beat with a mixer at medium speed 3 minutes or until light and fluffy.  Beat in rind and 1/4 cup juice.  Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition ( mixture will look curdled).

3. lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife.  Combine flour, baking powder and salt, stirring well with a whisk.  Add flour mixture to sugar mixture; stir with a wooden spoon to form a stiff dough.  Turn dough out onto a floured surface; knead 10 to 15 times to form a sooth dough.

4. divide dough into 8 equal portions.  Working with 1 portion at a time (cover remaining dough to prevent drying), shape each portion into a 30 inch long rope; cut each rope crosswise into  5 inch long pieces.  Tie each dough piece into a know.  Place knots on 2 baking sheets coated with cooking spray.  Bake 1 sheet at a time at 375 for 8 minutes or until bottoms of cookies are lightly browned and tops are still pale.  Remove cookies from pan; cool on wire racks.

5. to prepare glaxe, combine powdered subar, 3 tablespoons juice, and buttermilk; stir until smooth.  Dip tops of cookies into glaze; dry on racks.

Yield 4 dozen cookies  (I did not get that many)

Hi all,

I taught a great herb class a couple of weeks ago and we made the most wonderful herb wreaths. Small wreaths 3-4 inches in diameter just perfect to set in a pot of soup, in a pot of ice tea, or in your rice maker to infuse your rice (thanks to Brett for that great idea!)

We started with a sturdy herb, trailing rosemary or lemon grass, then wove around them the other herbs to create the taste profile we were hoping for.   But I promised the class some recipes of soup that the wreaths would be good in… so here goes:         Enjoy!

Tomato Soup with Roasted Garlic and Herbs

– makes about 8 cups of soup –
Adapted from FatFree Vegan Kitchen.


1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, diced
2 ribs celery, diced
1 can (28-ounce)Fire-Roasted diced tomatoes
1 can (28-ounce)  Fire-Roasted crushed tomatoes
3 cups vegetable or chicken broth
8 cloves roasted garlic
Salt and pepper to taste

Soup wreath with (peppers, rosemary, parsley)
1 or 2 tablespoons sugar (optional)
4 tablespoons plain yogurt (optional)
Croutons (optional)


1. Sauté onion and celery in olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. When onion is translucent (about 7 minutes), add the tomatoes, broth, and soup wreath. Bring to a boil, then simmer on low heat for 10 minutes.

2. Transfer half of the soup to the blender (remove wreath and set aside), add the roasted garlic, and purée until fairly smooth. If you’d like a chunky soup, add the blended half back to the pot. For a smoother soup, blend the rest of the soup and return it to the pot. Add salt, and pepper to taste, put the wreath back in, and simmer for about 10 minutes to allow the flavors to blend. Taste the soup, and if it is too acidic, add sugar, just enough to take the edge off. Take out the wreath and discard. If desired, serve with croutons or a tablespoon of yogurt stirred into each bowl.

Tom Yum Goon

Thai Hot and Sour Soup

2 servings

4 cups water

1 cup raw peeled and deveined shrimp

5 mushrooms

1 lime

1 lemongrass/Kaffir lime wreath

2 tablespoons fish sauce

1 tablespoon nam prig pow (optional)

Cilantro for garnish

(Wreath should include hot chili, cilantro, lemongrass and Kaffir lime leaves)

Start boiling the water in a 2 quart pot. Add the wreath to the water and let boil for 5 minutes.

Put the fish sauce and 1 lime’s juice into the bottom of the bowls you will serve the soup in.  Dice the cilantro and set aside.

Clean and half the mushrooms and add them to the pot.  Add the shrimp and turn off the heat.  Shrimp get  tough very quickly, and will cook even when it is just sitting in the warm broth.  Remove and discard the wreath. Scoop the shrimp and liquid into the serving bowls immediately.   As soon as you add the liquid to the serving bowls you will see that the broth becomes cloudy because of the lime juice.  Add the nam prig pow.  Sprinkle with cilantro and serve.

It’s almost 11pm, feet up, wish there was a glass of wine next to me, but I would have to go to the kitchen to get it and those 15-20 steps feel very far away right now…  I finished teaching at the Dublin Rec. Center a couple of hours ago. It was a great class.  6 really nice folks! Thursday I taught the same class at Livermore Rec. Center, they were really nice too.  It is fun to get to meet and “know” a little at least a different group of people at each class.  It is also fun to see how each class has it’s own personality…  Tonight’s was interesting as most of the group were very well traveled and multi-lingual (spelling?) so that added a really fun twist.  Livermore’s class was considered a “senior” class, but the group was just as varied as Dublin’s, a bit older, but definity the “active senior”.   Heck in Livermore I am a senior, and sometimes I forget that I am over 30.

Anyway you missed a great meal of Miso Soup, veggie steamed buns, asian coleslaw, fried rice, broccoli and beef, lime sorbet, and tea.  I will be teaching this again in the summer… so be looking for it!



Thursday December 10th 6-9 pm

2330 San Ramon Valley Blvd
San Ramon, CA 94583-1608
(925) 837-8895



6 one hour Swedish Massage or Spa Facials
Private use of Relaxation Room * Hot Tea and Treats

6 one hour Swedish Massage or Spa Facials
Ability to purchase Club Treatments @ Club Rates

One hour Couples Massage
Over night stay at Hotel Sierra W/ complimentary Breakfast


4 Private Training Lessons

Large Swiss Exercise Ball &Stretch Strap
30 minute Instruction Lesson

Facial Rejuvenation Treatment ($125 value)

Professional Skin Care Product Basket

One Hour Consultation ($75 value)

Hand made Jewelry

Home/Office Party for up to 12
Choice of Salsa or Jam Making Class

One Permanent Cosmetic (Brows, Lips, or Eyeliners) Procedure & Gift Basket


Garden Gifts

Get a head start on your holiday gift giving and stretch your budget by making gifts this year! The women on your list will love the pamper products, the men will love the BBQ rubs, and anyone with a little stress will love the Lavender heat wraps. Everyone will go home with directions for each item, and recipes for special baked goods and the gifts you make in class. Ages 14 to adult.

Fee: A $30 materials fee is payable to the instructor at the first class. Registration fee is $28 Dublin Residents, $32 Non-Dublin residents

Saturday 12/12 8am to 12 noon Activity 21800

Living Gourmet Fall Class Schedule