Alzheimer Society Cooking Class

  • Rosemary Focaccia

  • Big Italian salad

  • Tuscan kale soup with Italian sausage

  • Cookies two ways- Madeleines/ Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

Rosemary Focaccia


3 cups water (slightly warmer than room temperature)

2 tablespoons yeast

1 teaspoon of sugar

¼ cup olive oil

8 cups all-purpose flour

4 teaspoons salt

6 tablespoons olive oil

¼ cup fresh chopped herbs

3 tablespoons salt


In a stand mixer, pour in water, sugar and yeast.   

Let yeast bloom (about 2 minutes). It will begin to foam and froth

Once the yeast has bloomed add the flour, salt and olive oil.

Turn machine on number 1, and mix for 3 minutes.

Turn machine on number 2, and mix for 4 more minutes.  (Adjust dough as needed with a little bit of water or flour.)

Spread about 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large bowl, and then scrape dough into the large bowl.  Cover with saran wrap, and leave to rise in a warm place.

Knock down the dough.  Place dough on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and spread dough all over the pan. Press down with fingers to create dimples all over the dough, and stretch as much as possible to reach the outside of the pan.

Brush olive oil all over the top of the dough, and sprinkle all over with rosemary and salt.  

Let dough rise an additional 10 minutes, and then load into the oven.  Bake until golden brown, about 25 minutes.

Beyond Be-Leaf Italian Salad:


1 large head romaine lettuce, washed, dried and cut into large, bite-sized pieces

1 large red bell pepper, chopped

1 cup chopped hothouse cucumbers

1 large carrot, peeled into ribbons

Handful grape tomatoes, halved

Handful pitted olives

Feta, crumbled to taste



1 cup loosely packed fresh Italian parsley, roughly chopped

10 big leaves fresh basil

1/4 teaspoon dried oregano

2 cloves garlic, peeled

1/4 cup red wine vinegar, best quality

3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1-1/2 teaspoons honey



Place all salad ingredients in a large bowl. Combine all dressing ingredients in a food processor and blitz to blend. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Right before serving, add about half of the dressing and toss well. Add more dressing little by little as necessary; be sure to dress greens very generously, otherwise salad will be bland. Reserve leftover dressing for another use.


Zuppa Toscana


1 tablespoon olive oil

1 pound Italian sausage

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 onion, diced

12 cups chicken broth

1 large russet potato, peeled and diced

2 cups kale, finely chopped

4 cups heavy cream

salt and pepper to taste

Parmesan to taste


To a large pot over medium heat, add the olive oil. Brown the sausage until no longer pink.

Add the garlic, and onion and cook, stirring often, until the onions a translucent and the garlic is fragrant, about 4 minutes.

Add the chicken broth, potatoes, and kale. Bring the broth to a simmer, reduce the heat to medium-low, and cook until the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes.

Remove the soup from the heat, stir in the cream, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Ladle into soup bowls and serve with parmesan garnish

Madeleines (makes 24)


1 ⅓ cups of all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

⅔ cup of sugar

Zest of 2 lemons

4 large eggs

2 tablespoons of honey

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 cup of butter, melted and warm

4 tablespoons of milk


In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

Place sugar and lemon zest a bowl. Using your fingertips, rub sugar and lemon zest together until sugar is moist and fragrant. Add eggs and whisk until mixture is pale and thickens slightly, about 2 minutes. Whisk in honey and vanilla.

Gently fold in flour mixture in three additions; fold in melted butter until fully incorporated. Stir in milk. Batter should be smooth and shiny. Press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface of the batter; transfer to refrigerator and let chill

Butter and flour a large madeleine pan. Spoon batter into madeleine pan; transfer to refrigerator until ready to bake.

Place a heavy, large baking sheet in oven; preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Place Madeleine pan on preheated baking sheet. Bake until golden and big bumps on top spring back when touched, 11 to 13 minutes. Remove pan from oven and immediately release madeleines from pan by rapping pan on counter. If any stick, use a butter knife or fingers to help release. Let cool on a wire rack.

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies (makes 24)


2 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 3/4 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
6 tablespoons unsalted butter melted and cooled
1 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup confectioners powdered sugar


Preheat the oven to 325° and have ready a cookie sheet lined with either parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and sea salt. Set aside until ready to use.

Add the sugar and eggs to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, and mix on medium-high speed for 3-4 minutes, until pale yellow and noticeably thicker.

Reduce the speed of the mixer to low and add in the vanilla, followed by streaming in the melted and cooled butter.

With the mixer still on low, gradually add in the dry ingredients. Add the chocolate chips and mix once more.

Have ready a small bowl of confectioners sugar, and dust your hands with powdered sugar as well. Scoop out a heaping tablespoon of dough, roll into a ball, and press gently to flatten. Roll the cookie dough in the powdered sugar and transfer to the baking sheet, placing each about 2" apart.

Bake for 12-14 minutes. Serve and enjoy!



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