Graf Growers

Cooking Class & Happy Hour Recipes

Cooking Class

On Wednesday, August 12 we held a cooking class where local cookbook author and herb aficionado, Judi Strauss, taught us three cool summer dining recipes. It’s been a week and we are still drooling. Judi wrote The Charmed Kitchen Cookbook and maintains her Charmed Kitchen Blog. At the cooking class and happy hour, she focused on three recipes that we cannot wait to make: a Corn and Barley Salad with fresh Basil, a Marinated Tomato Salad and the showstopping, Peachy Salad. Below we have listed Judi’s recipes along with a few of her other cool summer favorites. Head over the Charmed Kitchen to check out more of Judi’s recipes and see her event schedule.

Judi will be back at Graf Growers on Wednesday, September 16 for a cooking class and happy hour. She will be covering late summer and fall harvest recipes! To sign up, visit or call us at 330.836.2727. Enjoy!

Cooking Class and Happy Hour

*Corn and Barley Salad with Basil

½ c. pearl barley


3 T. cider or white wine vinegar

1 t. Dijon mustard

fresh ground pepper

3 T. olive oil

3 T. fresh basil, cut into thin strips

3 c. cooked corn, from six ears

1 c. diced sweet onion

1 c. diced sweet pepper, any color

¼ c. sliced green onions

Combine barley, 2 cups water and ½ t. salt in saucepan and simmer, covered until barley is tender, about 50 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold water. Combine remaining ingredients and toss with barley in large bowl. Makes 6 servings.

*Peachy Chef Salad


1/3 c. honey

1/4 c. white wine vinegar or cider vinegar

1 t. paprika

1 t. dry mustard

1/4 t. salt

1/2 c. olive oil

3 cups chopped peaches


6 c. torn salad greens

12 oz. cooked chicken, turkey, ham, etc. cut into strips

1 c. cubed cheese

1/2 c. cashews

In blender, combine first five ingredients and start running machine on high. Add oil in a slow stream until mixture becomes thickened. Pour into bowl and stir in peaches and chill, several hours if you can. When ready to serve arrange greens on one large platter or on smaller salad plates. Arrange meat and cheese on platter or plates. Spoon over the dressing, add cashews, and then serve. Serves 4-6.

Marinated Tomato Salad

3 large tomatoes, cut in wedges, or 2 pints cherry tomatoes, halved

1 T. olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

2-3 basil leaves, cut into thin strips

2 T. balsamic vinegar

salt and pepper to taste

Combine ingredients and serve at room temperature. Serves 4-6.

Easy Bean Salad

2 c. green beans

2 c. wax beans

2 c. baby carrots

1 can kidney beans, rinsed and drained- use whatever beans you have on hand

1 c. chopped sweet onion

1/2 c. oil

1/2 c. cider vinegar

1 T. Italian seasoning

salt and pepper to taste

Cook vegetables in boiling water until tender Drain. Combine with remaining ingredients in a bowl and stir well. Chill until ready to serve. You can eat it just the way it is or serve it over lettuce with toasted pita chips.

Tomato Relish

12 large tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped

1 cup diced celery

3‑4 medium onions, peeled and sliced thin

1 green sweet pepper, seeded and chopped

3 red or yellow sweet peppers, seeded and chopped

3 T. canning salt (or non‑iodized)

1‑2 T. prepared horseradish

1 1/4 c. sugar

1‑2 T. whole mustard seed

1 t. ground cinnamon

1/2 t. fresh grated ginger

1/2 t. fresh ground pepper

1/4 t. ground cloves

1 c. cider vinegar

Combine vegetables with salt and horseradish in a stainless steel or ceramic container. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Remove from fridge and drain off all liquids in a colander. Discard juices. Return tomato mixture to bowl and add remaining ingredients, stirring to dissolve sugar. Chill several hours before serving. Adjust seasonings to suit your taste. Re-package in sterile canning jars for easier storage in refrigerator, or for gift giving. Keeps for several weeks in the fridge.

Cream of Fresh Tomato Soup

3 medium-sized ripe tomatoes

1 small onion, chopped fine

1 rib celery, chopped fine

Pinch of sugar, optional

3 whole cloves

1 small bay leaf

3 T. butter

3 T. flour

1 t. salt

3 c. milk

Peel and chop tomatoes. Place tomatoes in saucepan with onion, celery, sugar (if adding), cloves and bay leaf. Bring mixture to a boil; reduce heat and cover, simmering 15 minutes. Melt butter in a large saucepan then stir in flour and salt. Cook mixture until bubbly. Add milk and cook until thickened stirring constantly. Puree tomato mixture through strainer, food mill or in a blender or processor. Add to milk mixture and heat through. Serves 6.

Corn and Black Bean Salad

4-5 ears of corn, cooked and cut off the cob

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

1 sweet pepper, seeded and chopped

1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced

1/2 c. oil

1/2 c. cider vinegar

1 T. sugar- or more to taste

1 t. cumin

salt and pepper to taste

1/4 c. chopped cilantro

Combine corn with other veggies in a medium mixing bowl. Combine oil with vinegar, sugar and seasonings and stir to mix well. Add to corn mixture and toss in the cilantro. Adjust seasonings. Cover and chill a couple of hours before serving. Serves 3-4.


Judi’s Contact Information-

Judi Strauss

216 383 9511


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