This week's column is dedicated to the Vocational School in Rockland where our grandson Aubrey is taking culinary classes. On certain days, breakfast and lunches are open for the public to share — the price is right, service is great and food is delicious!


Carrot – Raisin Salad

1/2 cup extra – virgin olive oil

6 tablespoons cider vinegar

2 tablespoons honey

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

salt and pepper

2 pounds carrots, peeled and shredded – not pre-shredded carrots in a bag

1 cup raisins

1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained

Whisk oil, vinegar, honey, mustard, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper together in large bowl. Add carrots, raisins, and pineapple and toss thoroughly to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 24 hours. Serve.


Secret Ingredient Biscuits

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup whole milk

3/4 cup mayonnaise – not reduced or fat free

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 450 degrees. Line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Whisk milk and mayonnaise together in separate  bowl. Stir milk mixture into flour mixture until just combine. Using greased 1/4 cup measuring cup, drop 12 level scoops of dough onto prepared sheet, spacing them 1 1/2 inches apart. Use small spoon, if necessary, to dislodge dough from measuring cup. (This dough is sticky, and you may have to re-grease several times during portioning.) Bake until biscuit tops are golden brown, 12 to 14 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through baking. Transfer biscuits to wire rack and let cool for 5 minutes. Serve.


Corn Bake

Mix one 16 ounce can creamed corn, 1 can evaporated milk, 2 tablespoons sugar, 2 tablespoons corn starch and 2 eggs. Pour into 9-by-9-inch buttered casserole dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.


Sweet – Sour Cabbage

1 1/2 pounds red or green cabbage

2 medium apples

1/2 cup cola (room temperature)

2 tablespoons vinegar

2 tablespoons brown sugar

2 tablespoons bacon drippings

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 to 1 teaspoon caraway seeds

Coarsely shred or cut cabbage (should measure 3 cups). Core and dice unpeeled apples. In pan, toss together cabbage, apples and all remaining ingredients. Cover, simmer until cabbage is tender, about 25 minutes. Stir occasionally. Serve.


Pineapple & Cream Cheese Upside Down Cake

1/4 cup butter, melted

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1 can (20-ounce) Dole pineapple slices, drained

8 maraschino cherries

1 package (9-ounce) yellow cake mix

2 packages (8-ounce each) Philadelphia cream cheese, softened

1 package (3-ounce) Jello lemon gelatin

2 eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 9-inch spring form pan with nonstick cooking spray. Stir together melted butter and brown sugar in pan. Place eight pineapple slices in sugar mixture. Place cherry in center of each pineapple slice. (More pineapple may be needed). Prepare cake mix according to the package directions. Pour half cake batter evenly over pineapple. Beat cream cheese, lemon gelatin and eggs in bowl of an electric mixer until smooth. spread cream cheese mixture gently over cake mix. Pour remaining cake mix over cheese cake in pan. Bake 65 to 75 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes. Loosen edges and turn out on serving platter. (If the middle of the cake settles a little lower, as some cheesecakes do, I would suggest covering the tip with Cool Whip.)


Our thought for the week: "We need to make the kind of society where it is easier for people to be good." — Peter Maupin