The Art of Food in Frogtown and Rondo

Peanut Butter Cup Cookies, Jalapeno Popper Spread, and Eggplant Parmesan

Peanut Butter Cup Cookies

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 cup butter, softened 1/2 cup white sugar
½ cup peanut butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg, beaten (or egg replacer)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons milk / non-dairy milk
40 miniature chocolate covered peanut butter cups, unwrapped

Prep: 25 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Ready: 1 hour and 35 minutes

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Sift together the flour, salt and baking soda; set aside.
Cream together the butter, sugar, peanut butter and brown sugar until fluffy. Beat in the egg, vanilla and milk. Add the flour mixture; mix well. Shape into 40 balls and place each into an un-greased mini muffin pan.
Bake at 375 degrees for about 8 minutes. Remove from oven and immediately press a mini peanut butter cup into each ball. Cool and carefully remove from pan.

Jalapeno Popper Spread

2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup mayonnaise / vegan mayo
1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chilies, drained
2 ounces canned diced jalapeno peppers, drained
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 3 minutes
Ready: 13 minutes

Stir together cream cheese and mayonnaise in a large bowl until smooth. Stir in green chiles and jalapeno peppers. Pour mixture into a microwave safe serving dish, and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
Microwave on High until hot, about 3 minutes.

Eggplant Parmesan

1 1/2 cups bread crumbs (can be gluten-free)
1 eggplant, peeled into long strips 1/4-inch thick
2 eggs, beaten
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided so that it can be alternated on eggplant layers
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 (16 ounce) jar spaghetti sauce, divided so that it can be alternated on eggplant layers
1 (8 ounce) package shredded mozzarella cheese, divided so that it can be alternated on eggplant layers
1 pinch dried basil

Prep: 30 minutes
Cook: 37 minutes
Ready: 1 hour and 7 minutes

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Pour bread crumbs in a shallow bowl.
Dip eggplant into eggs; coat with gluten-free bread crumbs. Place in a single layer on prepared baking sheet; lightly sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
Bake in the preheated oven for 6 minutes; remove from oven. Flip eggplant with a spatula; brush with olive oil. Bake until golden brown, about 6 minutes. Remove from oven; reduce heat to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Spread enough spaghetti sauce into a 7x11-inch baking pan to cover the bottom; layer on some of the eggplant slices. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese over eggplant; top with Parmesan cheese. Repeat layering sauce, eggplant, mozzarella cheese, and Parmesan cheese in this order; top with basil.
Bake in the preheated oven until cheese is bubbly and lightly golden, about 25 minutes.

Bringing People Together
These recipes are good because they feed a lot of people. This is good for having big events and mainly just bringing people together. This helps a lot especially in the food movement. Sometimes people want to help and do not know where to start, this is where a big meal becomes handy. You can have everyone come together to brainstorm ideas and to eat. Eating always makes people feel more comfortable. This could also help with the food movement by bringing people together to make people aware of the food movement. If there is free food at an event, that is a reason to go. So, if you have food, there will be people coming just for the food and then you would have people coming for the topic being discussed. You could get a diverse amount of people. Bringing people together is always a good way to bring awareness, talk about ideas, brainstorms ideas, or even just to get to know someone. Food is a great way to do this because everyone eats and likes food!

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