Small Plate Cooking with Chef Richard

Hoosier Village is hosting a culinary competition Jan. 30 with 20 chefs from all over the U.S. who will create extravagant “small plates” that are healthy and easy to replicate at home. Chef Richard creates Mediterranean Quinoa Salad and Dark Chocolate Truffles.

Chef Richard’s Simply Divine Truffles

Yield Makes about 3 1/2 dozen


o 8 ounces best-quality bittersweet or semisweet chocolate bar?, finely chopped * Do not use morsels

o 1/2 cup heavy cream

o 1 tablespoon liqueur, Framboise for raspberry or perhaps Triple Sec for a nice orange flavor (optional)

o Unsweetened cocoa powder, for rolling * use a fine dark cocoa to balance the dark fruit notes of the chocolate


1. Put chocolate into a large heatproof bowl. Bring cream just to a boil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat; pour over chocolate in bowl. Stir in liqueur, if desired. Cover with plastic wrap; let stand 10 minutes. Stir until smooth (do not incorporate air as you stir). Let stand until thick, about 15 minutes.

2. Pour chocolate mixture into a shallow 8-inch dish. Cover and refrigerate until mixture is very cold and set but still pliable, about 30 minutes.

3. Using a teaspoon or a 1/2-inch melon baller, scoop balls of chocolate mixture, transferring them to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper as you work. Refrigerate truffles 10 minutes.

4. Using hands dusted with cocoa powder, dip each truffle in cocoa powder to coat, then quickly shape truffle into a rough round. Refrigerate truffles in an airtight container until ready to serve, up to 2 weeks; before serving, reshape into rounds, and roll each truffle in cocoa powder, if desired. * Truffles can also be dipped in chocolate, coconut or perhaps your favorite cookie crumbs. I enjoy Ginger Snaps put through the food processor.

Now……. Just enjoy this little piece of happiness


Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

Yield Serves 5


o 1/3 cup fresh yellow onions ¼ inch dice

o 1-1/8 tsp fresh, peeled, chopped garlic cloves

o 1/3 cup fresh eggplant ¼ inch dice

o 1/3 cup fresh red bell pepper ¼ inch dice

o 1/3 cup fresh yellow squash ¼ inch dice

o 1/3 cup fresh zucchini squash ¼ inch dice

o 1/3 cup fresh tomatoes ¼ inch dice

o 1/8 tsp olive oil

o 1/8 tsp kosher salt

o 1/3 finely ground black pepper

o ¾ cup dry quinoa

o 1/8 tsp low sodium vegetable base, no MSG

o 1-1/8 cup cold water



Lightly coat the bottom of large sauté pan with olive oil spray. Add onions and garlic and cook over medium high heat. Stir constantly, do not allow garlic to burn. When the onions are translucent, about 2-3 minutes later, add eggplant and red peppers. Sauté for 2-3 minutes more. Add in squash, zucchini, and tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper and allow to cook slowly over low heat for 5-7 minutes until eggplant is cooked. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.


Dissolve vegetable base in water to make stock. Put quinoa into a pot and cover with the vegetable stock. Place over high heat until mixture comes to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover with a tight-fitting lid and cook for 10-15 minutes until quinoa is tender. Mix in the sautéed vegetable mixture and serve warm.










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