Public Meeting Today for the future of School Lunch in LA
at the LAUSD Building at 4th and Beaudry – GOOGLE IT!
1:00 pm
They Validate! ( Park in the Visconti Lot)
Hi All –

Quick alert – and sorry for the last minute notice . . . I just got this on my facebook page this morning, and you know how I feel about eating well… Especially our youngsters.
When: Today, the school board will vote on whether or not to approve the current $290m/five-year food services (processors) contract.
What you can do: Please consider signing up to speak for 3 minutes to share what you think about the current program, and ask the board to postpone the vote for an opportunity to have a larger dialogue with parents and community.
Where do you go: register at the school board conference room at 4th & Beaudry to speak at 1p
Parking: parking is validated in the Visconti lot.
If you do not wish to speak – you can give your time to others

I don’t know if I can make it – I’m teaching cooking class with 7th graders at that time. But I’m gonna try really hard to get there before it’s over. feel free to text me with updates – 310 850 1884.


It’s always a good day at the garden school.  Especially Earth Day; check out these awesome hats made in honor of  our mother.

Earth Day In the Garden

Earth Day In the Garden

Last year,  we got lots of fruit trees donated and they are flourishing this season.

We're baring fruit

We're baring fruit

Last week, when we foraged,  the kids picked all the green peaches, nectarines and plums.

OOPS. Good thing fruit is like hair… It’ll grow back.

This week I’ll have a more specific direction when they start searching for their second lunch, “forage on the ground floor only.” No trees.  It was a heartbreaking moment for me,  but they had a good time doing it!

Getting ready for second lunch

Getting ready for second lunch

Seriously GREAT night!  Our leaders , Sunita and Indra Led us through 10 different recipes.

Sunita and Indra getting ready for the students
Sunita and Indra getting ready for the students

Sunita and Indra were flawless in there demonstrations and assistance and we made a FEAST!  You’ll notice that some recipes have  few to no amounts listed. If you weren’t at the class this may seem a little strange.  I suggest you mix the spices together  before adding and taste!  The leading ladies suggested all the chefs that night could have used more onions.  Make sure you have a gracious portion- don’t be skimpy, this is the base for much of the flavor.

Indra’s Recipes

Indra’s  Sri Lanken  Chicken

Clean and washed  5 Chicken Pieces ( boneless thighs preferred)
½ tsp each salt and pepper, 2 tsp chile powder, pinch of tumeric
2 cloves, 2 cardamom pods, ¼ tsp fenugreek
1 inch of cinnamon, 2 tsp curry powder from your cousin, ½ tsp soy, 1 tsp oil

Combine all to marinate chicken  2- 4 hours or overnight

Saute :
1/2 to 1  onion, bay leaves ( curry leaf)
¼ tsp mustard seeds –  look for the small ones
1 green chile, ½ inch of ginger –  minced
2 cloves of garlic  – minced, ½ tsp cumin seed
2 tsp of dry roasted curry powder

Add chicken. Stir 5 minutes.  add 1.5 – 2  tomatoes, mix. Cover for 5 minutes.
Add ½ cup of water and  ½ cup of coconut milk. Adjust to suit.

Taking in the Spice extravaganza
Taking in the Spice extravaganza

Parippu ~ Lentil or Dal curry

1 Cup of Dal, triple washed.

1.5 cups of water
1 clove of garlic
onion bits and green chile
1 inch of cinnamon stick

Simmer together till done.

Saute: Onions,  garlic, chile powder, bay leaves, red chiles,  mustard seed in olive oil
( feel free to add maldib fish)

Then: add the dal, ¾ cop of coconut milk and ¾ cup of water. Salt at the end.
Sprinkle with curry powder, just a bit.

Cucumber Salad – A Delicious Cold Pickle

Peel and cut the cucumber in quarters lengthwise.
1 tomato  – Decide by taste whether to remove or leave the seeds. Slice small.
Add ¼ of a red onion, sliced the same size as the cucumber.
add green chile rounds.
Salt and Pepper to taste.
Squeeze on the juice of lime.
(Add Maldib Fish if you like.)
Chill and Enjoy

Potato Curry

Boil 2 to 3 potatoes  till just cooked through,  cool,  peel and cube in 1 inch pieces.

¼ onion, 2 garlic cloves, 1 green chile, ¼ tsp mustard seed, ½ – to 1/3  tsp tumeric
oloo har ( fenugreek)
fresh bay ( curry leaf)
1 or 2 red chiles

add ¾ cup of water and ¾ cup of coconut milk.
Add potato.
Heat and reduce.
Sprinkle with Curry powder from your cousin ( or the spice man)  before serving.
(add Maldib fish if desired)

Enjoying our Indian Feast Together
Enjoying our Indian Feast Together

Sunita’s Recipes

Baingain bhartha

mustard seeds
sliced onions
chili powder
garlic cloves
chopped tomato
globe eggplant
cilantro for garnish

1) Poke a few holes in the eggplants.  Roast until they are collapsed, turning every 20 minutes, for about an hour.  Cool, and peel off charred skin.  Set pulp aside.
2) Heat oil on medium-high heat in pan.  Add some mustard seeds and asoefetida.  When the seeds start popping, add the turmeric and sliced onions.
3) Sautee onions until clear.  Add the salt, chili powder, garlic, and chopped tomato.  Sautee a little longer.
4) Add the eggplant pulp and cook for a bit.  Shouldn’t take too long as the eggplant is already roasted.
5) Garnish with chopped cilantro.


(Note this one can take a while unless you decide to pressure cook the lentils first)
Soak the lentils first.

mustard seeds
chopped onions
chopped garlic
ground coriander
chopped spinach
soaked mung lentils

1) Heat the oil in a pan.  Add the mustard seeds.
2) When the seeds start popping, add the coriander, onions and turmeric.
3) Sautee until the onions are clear.
4) Add the garlic, coriander, sal, masala, spinach and lentils.  Add a little water to cover.
5) Cook on medium low heat (for quite a while) until lentils are cooked through.

Toor Dal

ghee (or oil)
cooked toor dal (in pressure cooker)
mustard seeds
curry leaves
chilli powder
tamarind pulp
jaggery (or brown sugar)

1) Heat the ghee in a pan on medium high heat.  Add the curry leaves, mustard seeds, and chili powder.
2) Lower the heat and add the cooked dal and stir well.
3) When it starts boiling, add salt, masala, tamarind pulp and jaggery.
4) Add water to make it the consistency you desire.


cumin seeds
chopped green chilies
chopped cauliflower
fresh ginger

1) Heat oil in pan.  Add cumin seeds.
2) When seeds begin to sizzle, add asoefetida and chilies.
3) After a minute or two, add cauliflower and salt.  Stir well to coat and cook.
4) Grate in fresh ginger to taste near end of the cooking.
5) When finished cooking, stir in chopped cilantro.

I’m catching up on my blog posts, and I realized there’s been so much I haven’t shared.  I’m going all the way  back to  February when we did the premiere reception for “The Yellow Handkerchief.” It was one of those events when 300 folks come out of the screening and  we need to be ready to  serve! We’re real good at this kind of reception,  and  we can do it on a tight budget too.

First we set up the trays while the folks are watching he movie.

300 Salmon Canapes ready to go

300 Salmon Canapes ready to go

I hire a great staff….

Party Makers

Party Makers

And we decorate a little bit.

Lighted Orchid Centerpieces

Lighted Orchid Centerpieces

Come and get it!!

Vegetable Tapenade on Endive Spears

Vegetable Tapenade on Endive Spears

We are ready and waiting to serve you!  This event was at the Silver Screen Theater at the Pacific Design Center. They are sticklers for the paper work  and insurance nonsense, but  the easy to work  and elegant venue always creates a successful and enjoyable evening.

Because you can order your Heritage Turkey at Harmony Farms – but hurry there are only 90 available and I already got two.  They are being raised at B and B Country Chicken Farm in Templeton and are a shocking $9. a pound. WOW. But you know what?  I’m worth it  – are you?

It’s here!  The new and Improved website for Jennie Cooks Catering Company.

Take a look around and have a party!  Or recruit some friends and let’s get together and cook up a storm on a Sunday afternoon.  There’s so much to  do with good food, and I want to help you eat well.

 Oh my julia I love you so

Oh my Julia I love you so

Everybody eats! Everybody  wins!

Mama Botanica is at it again, and we’re spreading the word.

screening  of "Fresh "

Screening of "Fresh"

This coming Wednesday  4.21.10 starting at 6 pm  the Earth Day festivities begin!  We’ll be screening “DIRT – The Movie” It’s the latest film about how we can save our dear mother earth.  We actually catered the  the screening a few weeks at the Pacific Design Center – a zero waste event of course.

Simple Centerpieces

Simple Centerpieces

So come on around – bring a potluck dish to share. Park on the street and walk down the driveway next to Cal Asia.  I’ll be making a few vegan offerings and some delicious Magic Mambo Punch.  A 5$ donation is suggested to cover eatwares and beverages.  The movie will start around 7 pm.

our address 3048 Fletcher Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90065 – my phone – 323.982.0052 an RSVP would be greatly appreciated.