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In the Kitchen with Mary Ann

Local Food Blogger Shares Two of Her Favorite Recipes

Article by Mary Ann Pace

Photography by Shannon Valentine | Lunalux

Originally published in Cypress Lifestyle

Mushroom Soup with Marsala

This is a mushroom lovers dream and is elegant enough to serve at a dinner party and the holidays.  I used Portobello mushrooms instead of the button but feel free to use both if you wish.  


! ounce of dried Porcini mushrooms

1 cup hot water

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 large shallots chopped

2 garlic cloves finely chopped

1 pound button mushrooms thinly sliced 

4 cups Beef Broth 

3 cups water

2 fresh thyme sprigs or 1/2 tsp dried

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1/2 cup dry Marsala or sherry

3/4 cup heavy cream

salt and ground pepper to taste

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano


Place the dried porcini in a bowl of hot water for 30 min.  Lift the porcini out of the water and squeeze them to extract more liquid.  If the water seems gritty, filter through a coffee filter or cheesecloth.  Chop the porcini.

In a medium skillet, melt butter over medium heat  and saute shallots until tender and lightly golden brown, about 10 minutes.  Add garlic and cook for 2 minutes.  Scrape the mixture into the slow cooker.

Add the porcini, the soaking liquid, sliced mushrooms, broth, water, thyme, and tomato paste.  Cover and cook on LOW for 6 to 8 hours, or until mushrooms are tender.  Just before serving stir in the wine and cream.  Salt and pepper to taste.  

Ladle the soup into bowls and sprinkle with cheese.  Serve with your favorite warm bread.

Sweet Peppers Stuffed with Turkey, Prosciutto, and Cheese

This is a very colorful and tasty dish.  I love using a mixture of red, yellow, and orange peppers.  Serve them with hot orzo or another small pasta to soak up the sauce. Serves 6


2 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium onion, finely chopped

1 medium carrot, finely chopped

1 medium celery rib, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1 pound lean ground turkey

Salt and pepper to taste

1/2 cup dry red wine

2 ounces prosciutto or ham, finely chopped

3/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

1/2 cup plain dry bread crumbs

6 large red, orange and or yellow bell peppers

2 cups canned tomato puree


In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat.  Add the onion, carrot, celery, and garlic.  Cook, stirring frequently, until vegetables are golden.

Add the turkey and salt and pepper to taste.  Cook, stirring often to break up the lumps, until the meat is no longer pink.  Add the wine and bring it to a simmer.  Cook until the wine has evaporated.  Remove the skillet from the heat and let the turkey cool slightly.  Stir in the prosciutto or ham, cheese, parsley, and bread crumbs.  

Cut the tops off the peppers and remove the stems and seeds.  Loosely stuff the peppers with the turkey mixture.  Replace the tops.

Pour the tomato puree into the slow cooker.  Arrange the peppers side by side in a single layer in the cooker.  Cover and cook on high for 3 hours or on low for 5 hours, or until the peppers are tender when pierced with a knife.  Serve hot.  

For more of Mary Ann's recipes visit her blog at

  • Mary Ann Hebrank