Quick and easy recipes you can make at home by...

Quick and easy recipes you can make at home by Long Island culinary schools.  Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Let cooking class come to you with these delicious recipes brought to you by Long Island culinary schools. Get the entire family involved in creating these kid-friendly dishes.

Empanadas with guacamole by The Cook's Studio at wineUdesign

INFO: wineudesign.com; 156 Engineers Drive, Hicksville; 516-939-9463

Makes approximately 6-8 large pastries

For the dough:

  • 2+ cups all-purpose flour, plus bench flour
  •  ½ tsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 stick (4 oz.) butter, cold
  • 1 egg
  •  ½ cup water, cold
  •  ½ tsp. vinegar

1. Mix flour, salt and sugar; then mash butter into dry ingredients with hands in a large mixing bowl until yellowish and butter is pea-sized.

2. Create a well in the center. Combine all liquids into well; whisk with a fork until mixture forms into dough.

3. Knead dough with heal of hand until smooth. If sticky, add more flour. Be sure not to overwork!

4. Flatten dough. Place in a plastic bag and chill for at least 20 minutes.

For the beef filling:

  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 8 ounces ground beef
  • 2 tbsp. sofrito
  • 2 tbsp. chipotle pure
  • ½ cup queso
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

1. Heat and coat a heavy bottom pot with olive oil. Add beef, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon to break up pieces. Cook until it starts to brown.

2. Add sofrito and chipotle; cook for a few more minutes.

3. Add salt and pepper to taste. Separate mixture into a clean bowl; add cheese.

4. Chill or cool to room temperature before assembly. Do not place the hot mixture inside the dough!

Assembly and cooking:

1. Slice dough into equal chunks, depending on desired size.

2. Flatten dough by hand as much as possible. Then, on a lightly floured surface, roll dough with a rolling pin to approximately ¼ inch or less thickness. Use the cutter side of the press to make a disc; place disc on top of press. 

3. Brush edges lightly with egg wash with fingers or pastry brush. Place filling in center and seal.

4. Repeat until dough filling is finished. (Tip: Dough scraps can be rerolled after chilling/resting.)

5. Fry in a 375-degree deep fat fryer, until dark golden brown. For a healthier option, bake in a 450-degree oven, until golden brown.

For the guacamole: 

  •       1 large, or 2 small ripe avocado
  •       1 shallot, minced
  •       3 grape tomatoes, chopped
  •       1-2 garlic cloves, minced
  •       2 sprigs of cilantro, chopped
  •        ½ jalapeño, optional
  •       Juice of ½ lime
  •       Salt and pepper, to taste

1. Scoop out inside of avocado with a spoon.

2. Mix avocado with shallot, tomato, garlic, cilantro, jalapeño, lime, salt and pepper to desired consistency.

3. Serve immediately. If serving later, cover tightly with plastic wrap to stop oxidation.

One bowl pizza dough by Baking Coach

INFO: bakingcoach.com; 320 Broadway Greenlawn Road, Huntington; 631-543-8608

Makes 1 full-sized pie

  • 1 ¼ cups warm water (about 100 degrees)
  • 1 tbsp. dry active yeast
  • 1 tbsp. granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup + 1 tbsp. olive oil (divided)
  • 3 ¼ cups all-purpose flour (divided)
  • 1 tsp. salt


1. In a large mixing bowl, combine warm water, sugar, and yeast; gently stir. Let yeast mixture sit and foam slightly for 5 minutes. Stir in 3 cups flour, salt and 3 tablespoons of oil. 

2. Mix with hands until dough forms. If the dough is too sticky, sprinkle in remaining flour as needed.

3. Coat dough with extra flour. Loosely cover dough in the bowl with a damp cloth or plastic wrap for approximately 30 minutes. Dough will rise and triple in size.


1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. 

2. Grease a cookie sheet or round pizza pan with leftover oil. Press and fit dough onto the pan. Top with sauce and cheese, making sure to leave room around the edges for the crust. 

3. Bake for about 15 to 18 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly and slightly golden brown. Let cool, slice and enjoy!

Fried rice by Baking Coach

INFO: bakingcoach.com; 320 Broadway Greenlawn Road, Huntington; 631-543-8608

Makes 8 — 3⁄4 cup servings

Prep Time: 15 min. 

  • 1-2 green onions, or one small white or yellow onion, chopped 
  • 2-4 large eggs, scrambled
  • 2 cups frozen mixed vegetables
  • 4 tbsp. oil
  • 4 cups cold cooked rice
  • 3-4 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 cup cooked chopped protein: fish, chicken, beef or pork

1. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet or wok on a medium-high heat. Add chopped onion. Cook for 3 minutes, until aromatic. Stir in frozen mixed vegetables. Let cook for 5 minutes. Take out vegetables from pan and set aside in a bowl or dish.

2. Add leftover oil to the pan and pour in beaten eggs, stirring rapidly until eggs scramble. Mix in cooked rice, cooked vegetables and protein of choice. Proceed to cook and mix for 5 minutes. Add 3 to 4 tablespoons soy sauce and toss to cover rice, vegetables and egg. Enjoy!

Creamy risotto with oyster mushrooms and fresh chives by A la Carte Culinary Services

INFO: alacartecs.com; 32 Atlantic Ave, Lynbrook; 516-599-2922

Makes 6 — 8 servings

Cook time: 30 to 40 minutes

  • ¾ ounce dried oyster mushrooms
  • Mushroom soaking liquid 
  • 4 cups vegetable, chicken or beef stock 
  • ½ tsp. saffron threads
  • 2 large shallots, minced (about ½ cup)
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 tbsp. butter, divided 
  • 2 cups Arborio rice
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh chives
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1. Prepare dried mushrooms at least 45 minutes prior to start. Place mushrooms in a bowl and cover with 4 cups hot, non-boiling tap water. Set aside for at least 30 minutes. Remove mushroom pieces, keeping the water. Place mushrooms in a colander or sieve and rinse under running tap water to remove grit. Coarsely chop mushrooms and set aside. Filter mushroom stock through coffee filter-lined strainer to remove grit. Add mushroom stock to a large saucepan. Bring stock to a slight simmer. Crumble in saffron.

2. In a heavy kettle or large saucepan, lightly sauté shallots in oil and 2 tablespoons of butter over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently until shallots are fully softened, but not browned. Mix in the rice and stir for a couple of minutes until completely coated and moderately translucent. Then, stir in the chopped dried mushrooms and wine. Once the rice has absorbed the wine, add a ladleful (about ¾ cup) of simmering stock.

3. Continue stirring and adding stock; do not add all the liquid at once. (Tip: Add more stock when the opening stays for a few seconds after running the wooden spoon across the bottom of the pan. Rice is done when it is creamy or al dente. Each grain should be well coated with sauce.) 

4. Remove from heat and quickly stir in egg yolk, butter, about ½ cup grated cheese and chives. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately with cheese as garnish.