DHS Chefs Cook Up Success

Being in a house all day surrounded by homework and distractions can be stressful. Some of the Dominican community focuses on a place where the stress melts away – the kitchen. With a recipe for success, DHS students and faculty have dished out happiness at home.

Out of the many recipes junior Allie Koenig has tried during quarantine, her favorite is her Mushroom Rosemary Risotto. This dish is vegetarian, which means there is no animal meats included. For Koenig, preparing her own dish “makes me happy when I get to share my food with others.” Koenig’s love for cooking and baking came from watching her dad cook. She said that she was always fascinated by the process and wanted to help with his next culinary masterpiece.

Mushroom Rosemary Risotto

Allie’s Mushroom Rosemary Risotto 

  • 6 cups vegetable broth  
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil  
  • 1 onion, finely chopped  1 tablespoon garlic, minced (more or less depending on your preference)  
  • 2 cup mushrooms  
  • 1 tablespoon rosemary (fresh or dried)  
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)  
  • Garlic powder (to taste)  2 cups rice  
  • 1 cup parmaesan cheese, grated  
  • In a large pot heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, mushrooms, and rosemary and cook until tender. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from pot and set aside.  
  • In the same pot, add a little more olive oil and the rice. Toast the rice over medium heat until the rice is lightly brown (about 2 minutes).  Add a cup of the broth to the rice at a time and stir. Add another cup once the previous cup has absorbed into the rice. The rice should be al dente and you might not have to put all of the broth.  
  • Add in the mushroom mixture and stir. Also add in the parmesan. Add garlic powder and whatever other seasonings you desire. Serve risotto warm and garnish with rosemary or parsley.  
  • Buon Appetito! 

Freshman Madeline Pourciau recreated one of her favorite Jazz Fest specialties, crawfish enchiladas. She enjoys making Prejean’s Famous Crawfish Enchiladas because “incorporating different cultures into dishes is amazing when the different flavors and ideas are put together.” Pourciau has grown up around many cooks in her family, but her father has especially inspired her. He taught her the ways around a kitchen and has made cooking a great way for her to handle stress. She finds many of her favorite recipes in the many cookbooks that have passed on to her from generations. Pourciau even has an Instagram page that inspires followers. Anyone can go to @nolagoodeats to enjoy her epicurean tips. Clink the link to get Pourciau’s favorite crawfish enchilada recipe: https://www.keyingredient.com/recipes/474694388/prejeans-famous-crawfish-enchiladas/

Crawfish Enchiladas

After watching her mother cook for years, eighth grader Layah Cavett has turned to the kitchen during her spare time in quarantine. Cavett finds being in the kitchen comforting because of “the experience of becoming independent and trying new things on my own.” In addition to  having a special love for Spanish and Italian cuisine, Cavett’s favorite recipe from her time at home was a chocolate cake. She especially enjoys the prep work before her baking. While doing prep work, she listens to music, gets out her ingredients out and mixes up some fun.

Eighth grader Layah Cavett mixes up a classic chocolate cake.

Classic Chocolate Cake 


  • 2/3 cup butter, softened  
  • 1-2/3 cups sugar  3 large eggs, room temperature  
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour  
  • 2/3 cup baking cocoa  
  • 1-1/4 teaspoons baking soda  
  • 1 teaspoon salt  1-1/3 cups whole milk  
  • Confectioners’ sugar or favorite frosting  


  1. In a bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 5-7 minutes. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with milk, beating until smooth after each addition. Pour batter into a greased and floured 13×9-in baking pan.  
  1. Bake at 350° until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 35-40 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. When cake is cool, dust with confectioners’ sugar or frost with your favorite frosting.  

English teacher Ms. Charlene Ford shares her favorite banana bread recipe.

English teacher Ms. Charlene Ford has also taken to the kitchen while teaching from home. Ms. Ford makes vegan dishes that avoid all animal products, which can make baking extra tricky. However, using no real butter, eggs, or dairy products has proven to be no challenge for Ms. Ford’s Blueberry Banana Bread. Since banana bread does not require yeast and is an easily prepared dish, it has become one of Ms. Ford’s quarantine essentials.

“I love the scent of baking and the sweet smell that permeates the house,” said Ms. Ford. “I can hardly wait for it to come out of the oven, and I certainly don’t let the instructed time pass before cutting in and having a taste!”

Vegan Blueberry Banana Bread Based on recipe from Giada De Laurentiis 


  • Plant-based Butter, for greasing the loaf pan  
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting the loaf pan  1 teaspoon baking soda  
  • 1 teaspoon fine salt  
  • 1½  teaspoon baking powder  
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon  
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg  
  • 1 cup sugar  
  • ½ cup vegetable oil  
  • ½ cup applesauce 
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract  
  • 2 ripe bananas, peeled and coarsely mashed to yield about 3/4 cup of mashed banana 
  • 1 cup (about 4 ounces) fresh blueberries  


  • Place an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour a 9- by 5- by 3-inch loaf pan. Set aside. 
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg.  In a large bowl, beat the sugar, oil, eggs and vanilla until blended. Stir in the bananas and blueberries.  
  • Add the dry ingredients and stir just until blended. 
  • Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake until a cake tester inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes. Remove the loaf from the pan and cool completely on a wire rack, about 2 hours. 


  • Mini loaf pans or cupcake tins also work well! 
  • If you don’t have nutmeg, double the cinnamon! 

  • Lindsey Foles