Weeknight Meals w/ Sam Sockness: A Garden Gate Cooking Class

June 13, 2010

If you’re a fan of Mama or Mimi on Facebook, or if you Tweet with us, or if you have ears and you’ve come into one of the stores like, ever, you’ve probably heard a little something about how much we love Garden Gate Delivery.  GG Founder and MG customer Marlo Capoccia is a maverick mompreneur — by delivering local food and goods to your doorstep, her company makes it easy to shop local and support local and regional farmers.  

Beyond that basic and brilliant business model, Marlo and Garden Gate continually find new ways to embrace that community spirit.  One way, in recent weeks, has been lending the Garden Gate truck (and Marlo herself to drive it) to Mimi’s Attic, in order to fill up the new store.  Another way has been through a series of cooking classes Garden Gate is offering, in order to help people decide what to do with the delicious local food once it’s been delivered. 

This past Monday, Sam Sockness from Manndible Cafe taught us a quick and easy dinner and dessert meant to satisfy kiddie tastebuds and grown-up time constraints.  As she walked us through a homemade pizza and vegan chocolate cake, Sam threw in several of her own personal cooking tips (for example, she only uses brown sugar, even if a recipe calls for white.)  By the end of the evening, I was reminded that feeding my family every evening does not to have to feel like an insurmountable obstacle, or even a chore — it can actually be fun.  Check out the recipes and photos from the class below, and sign up for Garden Gate’s newsletter to receive updates regarding future classes.  

Homemade Pizza Crust  

When it comes to pizza toppings, Sam insists you can't go wrong ... she put everything on this pizza from seitan to spinach.

2 cups whole wheat flour 

1/2 c white flour 

1 1/2 t baking powder 

1 t salt, spices to taste 

2-4 T butter 

1 cup milk, lowfat 

Mix dry ingredients, work in butter with hands – add milk. Knead till smooth, then roll out to desired consistency. Bake at 450 for 12-15 mins, depending on toppings, or until edges of crust are brown and cheese is golden. 

  

This vegan chocolate cake is a thing of beauty.

Vegan Chocolate Cake 

1 1/2 c flour (whole wheat local, same as pizza) 

1 c brown sugar 

6 T non alkalized cocoa powder 

1 t baking soda 

1/2 t salt 

1 1/4 c water 

1/3 c vegetable oil 

1 T white vinegar 

2 t vanilla 

1 t cinnamon, 1/2 t cayenne, and 1 t orange peel 

Mix dry ingredients, then add liquid. Bake at 350 for 25-30 mins, check at 20. 

Sam also made the pizza sauce from scratch, starting with diced tomatoes (she used canned for the class, but prefers fresh) and adding onions, spices, brown sugar, and water or wine for additional liquid.  Whatever went in, the sauce that came out was sensational. 

     

Still not quite convinced that these recipes will work for your kids?  Check out the gleeful expression on Violet, daughter of Manndible Cafe co-owner and Mama Goose customer Kathleen.  If that doesn’t get you to the kitchen, I don’t know what will. 

Big thanks to Marlo and Sam.  Happy cooking! 

-Meryl at the Goose

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