Recipes from Chef Mo

August 17, 2017 No Comments Post a comment

Chef Mo Montgomery presented several recipes at the Colorado Springs Women’s Living Expo – learn more about her and find the recipes below!

Chef Mo is Director of Hospitality & Culinary Arts at Pueblo Community College, originally hails from Denver, where she earned her A.S. in Culinary Arts, and her B.S. in Foodservice Management, with a minor in Sustainability, magna cum laude from Johnson and Wales University. Mo brings a decade of cooking experience to the table, and eagerly joined the PCC Hospitality and Culinary Team in 2015, a program she says she has admired for years.

Chef Mo is leading the program with sustainability and elevating it to new levels with competitions and Learning Labs, which provide students with hundreds of hours of experience. Mo has a passion for community involvement and advocacy for women, and previously was a chef instructor at Work Options for Women, a non-profit job training program dedicated to helping disenfranchised women become permanently and gainfully employed in the food service industry.

The Culinary Arts Program at Pueblo Community College is involved in more ACF-sanctioned competitions than any other program in the state of Colorado, and has won numerous awards including the Excellence in Education Award from the ACF Colorado Chef Association. The mission statement for the program is “Providing a diverse environment which prepares marketable professionals with a comprehensive education that develops a culture of personal and professional growth”.

Panna Cotta

Ingredients:

  • 2 cup Heavy Cream
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 5 tsp gelatin
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ cup yogurt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 handful of fresh herbs, such as Basil, Mint, Lemon Verbena, or Lemon Balm, chopped
  • Non-stick pan spray

Equipment:

  • Small bowl
  • 1-quart sauce pot
  • whisk
  • rubber spatula
  • fine mesh strainer
  • silicone molds or cupcake pan

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, dissolve gelatin in cold milk. Set aside.
  2. Put heavy cream and sugar in a small sauce pot. Bring to a boil over medium high heat.
  3. As soon as cream has reached boiling point, add fresh herbs and gelatin mixture, and turn off the heat. Whisk until gelatin is completely dissolved.
  4. Whisk in yogurt and vanilla.
  5. Prepare silicone molds by spraying with non-stick pan spray.
  6. Pour mixture through a fine mesh strainer into a small pitcher. Use pitcher to divide into molds. Gently tap molds to remove air bubbles.
  7. Refrigerate 30 minutes. Remove from molds and serve by itself or with fruit.

Makes 6 servings.

Easy Cheesy Pizza

Ingredients:

  • 8 slices sandwich bread
  • 8 oz tomato or marinara sauce
  • 8 oz mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 4 oz dry aged cheese, such as parmesan, grana Padano, or asiago
  • Fresh basil, cut into chiffonade
  • 2 oz olive oil
  • 1 oz polenta, grits, or coarse-ground corn
  • Any of your favorite toppings: pepperoni, ham, olives, bell pepper, etc.

Equipment:

  • Serrated knife and cutting board
  • Silicone brush
  • Rolling pin
  • Baking sheet
  • spoon

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400˚.
  2. Cut crusts off of bread and flatten gently with rolling pin.
  3. Brush one side of bread slices with olive oil. Sprinkle coarse-ground corn onto baking sheet. Lay bread slices oil-side down on top of cornmeal.
  4. Spoon about 1 oz of sauce onto each slice of bread. Top with cheeses and favorite toppings. Let the kids desogn their own pizzas.
  5. Bake about 5 minutes, until cheese is melted and slightly brown. Garnish with basil chiffonade.

Makes 8 slices.

White Cheddar Broccoli Mac’n’Cheese

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound large elbow macaroni or penne rigate
  • ½ head fresh broccoli, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 Tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 4 Tbsp butter
  • 4 Tbsp flour
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 4  cups milk
  • 1 Tbsp coarse-ground mustard
  • 1/2 pound (8 oz) sharp white cheddar, shredded
  • 4 oz dry aged cheese such as parmesan, grana padana, or asiago, shredded
  • 4 oz mozzarella, shredded
  • Coarse Kosher Salt and Freshly-ground Pepper, to taste

Equipment:

  • 1 baking sheet
  • 1 large mixing bowl
  • 1 large pot, at least 4 qts
  • 1 large, heavy-bottomed non-stick skillet
  • Colander for draining pasta
  • Oven-safe casserole dish
  • Wood or silicone spoon
  • Whisk, preferably silicone
  • 6-8 inch French Knife and cutting board
  • Can opener

Instructions:

  1. Fill the large pot with hot water, leaving enough room for pasta. Cover and set on high to bring to a rolling boil.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and place rack in the middle of the oven.
  3. Place skillet on stove over medium-high heat. Melt butter and add onions. Cook until brown and caramelized. This may take up to 15 minutes.
  4. Place broccoli in mixing bowl. Drizzle in sunflower oil, and season with salt & pepper. Mix thoroughly, coating broccoli with oil. Add more oil if necessary. Pour onto baking sheet and roast in the oven until lightly browned, about 5-10 minutes. Check often to make sure it doesn’t burn. Set aside to cool.
  5. Check on pasta water; when it comes to a full, rolling boil, add 4 Tbsp Kosher salt and drop the pasta in. Stir to ensure that the pasta doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot. Replace cover until water comes back to boil. Boil uncovered until noodles are al dente but not fully cooked through. Drain and set aside.
  6. Add flour to the skillet and stir in. Let the flour absorb the fat in the pan and cook for about 2 minutes.
  7. Add white wine to the skillet and stir vigorously for 1 minute. Stir in the milk, a little at a time. Use the whisk to break up any lumps. Bring to a light simmer, stirring constantly. Sauce should thicken. Turn heat down to low.
  8. Once the sauce is at a simmer, add the mustard into the sauce, and stir to combine. Season to taste. Turn off the heat and sprinkle in half of the cheeses.
  9. Combine the sauce, broccoli, and the pasta in the skillet. Make sure all the broccoli and pasta are coated in sauce. Pour into casserole dish, top with remaining cheese and bake for 20 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Makes 12 servings.

Fruity Fondue

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz vanilla yogurt
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 4 oz Nutella (optional)
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Fresh fruit, cut into manageable pieces

Equipment:

  • Whisk
  • 2 qt mixing bowl

Instructions:

  1. Whisk together yogurt, cream cheese, honey, and vanilla.
  2. If using Nutella, divide mixture in half. Set aside one half in serving bowl, and whisk Nutella into remaining mixture.
  3. Serve with fresh, seasonal fruit.

Tuna Noodle Casserole

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag wide egg noodles or large elbow macaroni
  • 2 cans chunk light tuna in water
  • 1 can anchovies in oil
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 4 Tbsp flour
  • 3 1/2 cups milk
  • 4 ribs celery, washed and diced
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 10 oz sharp cheddar, grated
  • Coarse Kosher Salt and Freshly-ground Pepper, to taste

Equipment:

  • 1 large pot, at least 4 qts
  • 1 large, heavy-bottomed non-stick skillet
  • Colander for draining pasta
  • Oven-safe casserole dish
  • Wood or silicone spoon
  • Whisk, preferably silicone
  • 6-8 inch French Knife and cutting board
  • Can opener

Instructions:

  1. Fill the large pot with hot water, leaving enough room for pasta. Cover and set on high to bring to a rolling boil.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400˚F and place rack in the middle of the oven.
  3. Place skillet on stove over medium-high heat. Open anchovies and drain oil into skillet. Add butter and melt.
  4. When butter has just melted, add onion and celery. Season with salt and pepper, but be light with the salt. Cook about 5 minutes, until onion begins to soften. Do not brown the onions.
  5. Add minced garlic and whole anchovies. Stir and break up anchovies with a wood spoon.
  6. Check on pasta water; when it comes to a full, rolling boil, add 4 Tbsp Kosher salt and drop the pasta in. Stir to ensure that the pasta doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot. Replace cover until water comes back to boil. Boil uncovered until noodles are al dente but not fully cooked through. Drain and set aside.
  7. Add flour to the skillet and stir in. let the flour absorb the fat in the pan and cook for about 2 minutes.
  8. Drain the liquid from the tuna cans into the pot, but do not add the tuna yet. Stir vigorously until completely incorporated. Stir in the milk, a little at a time. Use the whisk to break up any lumps. Bring to a light simmer, stirring constantly.
  9. Once the sauce is at a simmer, add the tuna into the sauce, and stir to combine. Turn off the heat and set aside.
  10. Combine the sauce and the noodle in the casserole dish. Make sure all the noodles are coated in sauce. Top with cheddar cheese and bake for 20 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Makes 12 servings.

Caprese S’mores

Ingredients:

  • 1 8-oz container of mini mozzarella balls, drained
  • 1 8-oz container of grape tomatoes, washed
  • 4 oz basil pesto
  • 1/4 baguette, sliced for crostini
  • Olive oil

Equipment:

  • Bamboo skewers, soaked in water for 30 minutes
  • Outdoor gas or charcoal grill, or a campfire
  • Silicone brush
  • 2 small bowls

Instructions:

  1. Build your skewers by threading tomatoes and cheese in alternating patterns. Use 2 pieces of cheese and two tomatoes per skewer.
  2. Put a little olive oil in one bowl and pesto in the other bowl.
  3. Brush baguette slices with olive oil and toast lightly over the flame. Place on plate and coat one side with pesto. Set aside.
  4. Brush skewers with olive oil, and grill until cheese just barely begins to melt. If using a campfire, hold skewers over the fire as if you’re toasting a marshmallow.
  5. Sandwich skewer between two pieces of crostini. Hold crostini together and pull out skewer. Eat immediately.
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