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Peaches & Cream Cake

from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe


Peaches and Topping:

  • 29-oz can sliced peaches or 1 quart home-bottled peaches Dole Coupons
  • 16 oz (2 packages) cream cheese, light or regular, softened to room temperature Cream Cheese Coupons
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 6 tablespoons reserved peach juice
  • Cinnamon and sugar for sprinkling

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9×13-inch baking pan with cooking spray and set aside.

In a medium or large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, sugar and cornstarch. Blend. Make a well in the center and add the vanilla, eggs, milk and melted butter. Whisk together until well combined. Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan.

Slice the peaches into bite-sized pieces, scattering them over the top of the batter evenly. In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar and reserved peach juice together until light and creamy. Dollop the cream cheese mixture in tablespoon-sized spoonfuls over the top of the batter and peaches and then use a spatula to evenly spread together to form a creamy layer. It doesn’t have to be perfect, just try to spread it as evenly over the top as possible (it’s ok if peaches are peeking through in spots). Sprinkle the top of the cream cheese layer generously with cinnamon and sugar.

Bake for 45-60 minutes until the edges are puffed and golden and the cream cheese layer has bubbled slightly on top. This is a difficult cake to test for doneness because of the gooey cream cheese layer. If the middle is still jiggly, bake until it no longer jiggles and the cake batter layer is puffed and no longer runny. Serve warm or at room temperature.


Grated Carrot Salad

Grated carrot salad is a favorite dish for French kids. They eat it regularly for school lunch, and it’s popular at home as well. Even adults enjoy it as a starter. They more finely grated the carrots, the more the natural sweetness of the carrots will dominate the flavor of this dish. For kids who have a hard time with crunchier textures, this might just be the dish that convinces them they love carrots.

8 large carrots
2 tablespoons
olive oil
Juice of one orange
Juice of half a lemon
One bunch flat leaf parsley
Optional: a dash of Dijon mustard Pinch of salt
Dressing: Mix the orange and lemon juice with the olive oil and the salt.

You may want to add more oil, or lemon, depending on your tastes. But don’t overdress this salad! It should be nicely coated, but not swimming in the dressing.

Carrots: Peel the carrots. This is important, because the skin is often more bitter than the interior! Grate the carrots in fine shreds using a hand grater or machine. (These food mills are popular in France, and make fine, delicate shredded carrot—if you have one, use it!) The finer the strands, the more delicious the salad.

Parsley: Chop a quarter bunch of flat leaf parsley, in fine, small (I mean teeny, tiny) pieces. Make sure you don’t include any of the stems—just the leaves.

Note: You don’t want dried parsley, as the fresh parsley offsets the texture of the carrots perfectly, whereas dried parsley tends to taste a bit crunchier and, well, dry.

Combine the carrots, parsley, and dressing just before serving. Best served slightly chilled or at room temperature. Bon Appétit!


Quinoa, Broccoli and Squash Casserole


2 cups of red quinoa
4 cups of hot water or broth
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 medium zucchini, sliced finely
2 garlic gloves, minced
2 cups, peeled and diced butternut squash
¼ cup of fresh parsley
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups of broccoli florets


Preheat oven to 375F. In a medium skillet, heat oil. Brown the onion, red pepper, zucchini and garlic for about 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer the grilled vegetables into a medium casserole dish. Stir in water, quinoa, squash, parsley, salt and pepper. Cover and bake for 25 minutes. Remove the casserole dish and add the broccoli, stir the mixture and then put back into oven for another 10 minutes until all the liquid is absorbed. Remove from oven and let stand for 10 minutes before serving.


Butternut Squash with Quinoa

If you can’t find quinoa, you can substitute couscous and cook for less time (5 minutes).


  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup of yellow onion diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh ginger
  • 3/4 cup golden raisins
  • 2 cups butternut squash, peeled and diced small
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 cups of water
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 3 tablespoons of fresh parsley chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon of fresh nutmeg grated

In a large saucepan, heat the oil and add onion, garlic and ginger. Cook for 4 minutes. Add raisins and cook another 2 minutes. Add squash and salt and heat over high heat for 2 minutes. Add water, and bring to a boil for about 10 minutes. Reduce heat to boiling simmer and cook uncovered for 25 minutes or until squash is tender. Once the squash is tender, stir in quinoa, parsley and nutmeg.  Cover and cook for another 10 minutes or until water is absorbed and quinoa is done. Remove from heat and fluff the quinoa.


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