Beyond the Cellar
By Pete Steinke

Beyond the Cellar is a monthly column featuring recipes donated by our members and curated by Pete Steinke.

An archive of recipes from past newsletter issues can be found in the Members Only Recipe Index.

  • February 24, 2023 9:29 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Larry shared this wonderful dessert at the February board meeting. It was so delicious we felt it needed to be shared. Serves 15 To 18, Total Time: 1 Hour 30 Minutes (Plus 2 hours cooling time)

    Carrot Sheet Cake

    WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS: Carrot cake was once heralded for its use of vegetable oil in place of butter, and carrots as a natural sweetener. Sure, the carrots add sweetness, but they also add a lot of moisture. And oil? It makes this cake dense and, well, oily. We wanted a moist, not soggy, cake that was rich, with a tender crumb and balanced spice. Cake flour proved too delicate to support the grated carrots, so we started with all-purpose. Some carrot cakes use a heavy hand with the spices; we took a conservative approach and used modest amounts of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. We settled on 1 pound of grated carrots for a pleasantly moist texture, and 1/2 cups of vegetable oil for a rich, but not greasy, cake. For a simple mixing method, we mixed the dry ingredients separately from the wet ingredients before slowly whisking them together and then stirring in the carrots. You can serve the cake right out of the pan, in which case you'll need only 3 cups of frosting for the top of the cake.

    2½ cups (12½ ounces) all-purpose flour

    1 teaspoons ground cinnamon

    1 teaspoons baking powder

    1 teaspoon baking soda

    ½ teaspoon salt

    ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg

    ½ teaspoon ground cloves

    4 large eggs

    1½ cups (10%½ ounces) granulated sugar

    ½ cup packed (3½ ounces) light brown sugar

    1½ cups vegetable oil

    1 pound carrots, peeled and grated 4 cups Cream Cheese Frosting (page 693)

    1 cup golden raisins

    1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease one 13 by 9-inch baking pan (or two 9 by 9-inch pans) and line bottom with parchment paper. Whisk flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, and cloves together in bowl.

    2. In large bowl, whisk eggs, granulated sugar, and brown sugar together until sugars are mostly dissolved and mixture is frothy. Continue to whisk while slowly drizzling in oil until thoroughly combined and emulsified. Whisk in flour mixture until just incorporated. Stir in golden raisins and carrots. Give batter final stir by hand.

    3. Scrape batter into prepared pan, smooth top, and gently tap pan on counter to settle batter. Bake cake until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking.

    4. Let cake cool completely in pan, about 2 hours. Run paring knife around edge of cake and flip cake out onto wire rack. Peel off parchment, then flip cake right side up onto serving platter. Spread frosting evenly over top and sides of cake and serve. Sprinkle chopped walnuts on top of frosted cake.

    Cream Cheese Frosting



    WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS: Cream cheese frosting is the perfect partner for carrot cake, and we enriched our version with sour cream for extra tang, and vanilla for depth of flavor. We found that first mixing the ingredients together on a lower speed, until they were well combined, and then turning up the speed gave us more control of the texture, ultimately producing a pleasing fluffy frosting. Do not use low-fat or nonfat cream cheese or the frosting will turn out too soupy to work with. This frosting has a softer, looser texture than other frostings; it won't work with a three-layer cake. If the frosting becomes too soft to work with, let it chill in the refrigerator until firm.

    1 pound cream cheese, softened

    10 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into chunks and softened

    2 tablespoons sour cream 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract

    ¼ teaspoon salt

    2 cups (8 ounces) confectioners' sugar

    1. Using stand mixer fitted with paddle, beat cream cheese, butter, sour cream, vanilla, and salt together on medium- high speed until smooth, about 2 minutes. Reduce speed to medium-low, slowly add confectioners' sugar, and beat until incorporated and smooth, about 4 minutes.

    2. Increase mixer speed to medium-high and beat until frosting is light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. (Frosting can be refrigerated for up to 3 days; let soften at room temperature, about 1 hour, then rewhip using mixer on medium speed until smooth, about 2 minutes.)

  • January 28, 2023 2:06 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Just in time to plan for Super Bowl LVII celebrations, Maureen Janke has offered up her recipe for Hawaiian ham and cheese sliders. They are easy to make, and ready in about 30 minutes.






    • 3/4 cup melted Butter
    • 1 tbsp Dijon Mustard
    • 1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
    • 1 tsp Brown Sugar
    • 1 tbsp Poppy Seeds
    • 2 tsp Dried Minced Onion
    • 12 King’s Hawaiian Dinner Rolls
    • 9 oz thin sliced Deli Ham
    • 8 oz thin sliced Swiss Cheese


    • Preheat oven to 350.
    • Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish.
    • Combine butter, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, poppy seeds, and dried onion?.
    • Slice the rolls to make sandwiches. Remove tops and set aside.
    • Place the bottom pieces into the prepared baking dish.
    • Layer the ham onto the rolls. Top the ham with the Swiss cheese.
    • Place the tops of the rolls onto the sandwiches. Brush or pour the liquid mixture evenly over the rolls.
    • Bake 20 minutes or until the rolls are lightly browned and cheese has melted.
    • Separate into individual sandwiches to serve.
  • January 08, 2023 11:37 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    For those of you who attended last year’s summer picnic, I hope you were lucky enough to have tried one of the stuffed mushrooms.  Kim Schiller said this is her go-to appetizer - and is always well received wherever she shares it. 


    • 7 ounces crabmeat

    • 5 green onions, thinly sliced

    • ¼ teaspoon dried thyme

    • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano

    • ¼ teaspoon ground savory

    • ground black pepper to taste

    • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

    • cup mayonnaise

    • 1 pound fresh mushrooms

    • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

    • ¼ teaspoon paprika

    1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

    2. Combine crabmeat, green onions, thyme, oregano, savory, and pepper in a medium bowl. Mix in mayonnaise and 1/4 cup Parmesan until well combined. Refrigerate filling until ready to use.

    3. Wipe mushrooms clean with a damp towel. Remove stems. Spoon out the gills and the base of the stem, making deep cups. Discard gills and stems.

    4. Fill mushroom caps with rounded teaspoonfuls of filling and place them in an ungreased shallow baking dish. Sprinkle tops with Parmesan and paprika.

    5. Bake mushrooms in preheated oven until heated through, about 15 minutes. Serve hot.


  • May 10, 2021 12:34 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    We are seeing the tips of our asparagus peeking out through the mulch, which means Spring is here. One of the best uses of this abundant vegetable is Sylvia Beach's Cream of Asparagus Soup. Have a safe and fun summer - looking forward to seeing everyone soon!

    Cream of Fresh Asparagus Soup


      • 1 1/2 cups Chicken Broth
      • 2/3 cup Chopped Onion
      • 2 cups Cut Asparagus
      • 1 tsp Lemon Juice
      • 1/8 tsp Ground Mace
      • 2 tbsp Butter
      • 2 tbsp Flour
      • 1/2 tsp Salt
      • few dashes White Pepper
      • 1 cup Milk


      1. In a saucepan, combine the chicken broth, chopped onion, asparagus with the lemon juice and mace. Bring mixture to boiling. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 8 minutes. Place half of the mixture into a blender or food processor. Cover and blend 30-60 seconds or until smooth. Pour into bowl. Repeat with remaining asparagus mixture; set aside.
      2. In the same saucepan, melt the butter. Blend in flour, salt, and pepper. Add the milk all at once. Cook and stir until mixture is thickened and bubbly. Stir in the blended vegetable mixture. Cook and stir until soup is heated through. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper.

      Serves 3 or 4

    1. March 25, 2021 11:50 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

      Doug and Mary Hudson brought Sausage & Egg Bites to a 2018 board meeting using a recipe that Doug invented. They have also made these bites with leftover chopped veggies. They can be served as an appetizer and also make a great breakfast on the go. 

      Sausage & Egg Bites


      • 7-8 eggs

      • 1 tablespoon milk
      • ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
      • ¼ - ½ cup scallions, chopped
      • 1 chorizo link, finely chopped (casing removed)

      Optional Seasonings:

      • salt and pepper (as desired)
      • 1 tablespoon freshly chopped parsley or cilantro
      • 1 teaspoon oregano (or marjoram)


      1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray a mini-muffin pan (24 muffins) with cooking spray.
      2. In a large bowl add all ingredients, except for chorizo and cheese.
      3. Add an even layer of egg mixture to each cavity in the prepared muffin pan. Top with an even layer of chorizo and cheese.
      4. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until eggs are set in the center.

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