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Janet K. Keeler, Times Staff Writer

Janet K. Keeler

Janet K. Keeler is a food columnist at the Tampa Bay Times and the founder of #CookClub, an online cooking community. She is the paper's former food and travel editor. Janet is a also a visiting professor in the Journalism and Media Studies Department of the University of South Florida St. Petersburg and the coordinator of its Culinary Communications programs. Keeler is also the author of Cookielicious: 150 Fabulous Recipes to Bake and Share. She joined the Times in 1992.

Phone: (727) 893-8586


Twitter: @RoadEats

  1. #CookClub recipe No. 34: Lemon-Yogurt Cupcakes with Blueberry Preserves (w/ video)


    It's fun to pick on Martha Stewart. The spun sugar concoctions. The multi-step recipes. The endless search for perfection.

    But darn it, if she can't produce a fantastic recipe.

    Such was my experience with #CookClub recipe No. 34, Lemon-Yogurt Cupcakes with Blueberry Preserves. (She makes them with seedless raspberry jam but in the fine tradition of #CookClub, I tinkered.)

    This recipe come from Stewart's 2009 Cupcakes, which is filled with intricately and whimsically decorated confections. Almost all of them are beyond my skill level. However, a section on unfrosted, unfussy cupcakes drew my eye. They are filled and layered, which makes for a lovely presentation....

    #CookClub recipe No. 34 is Lemon-Yogurt Cupcakes with Blueberry Preserves. This dish would be a lovely offering for a bridal or baby shower, or a potluck dessert for a dinner party. [JANET KEELER   |   TIMES]
  2. Easy Weeknight Meals: Original Columbia '1905' Salad recipe and more


    Mon | Meatless meal

    Linguine With White Bean Sauce is a fast vegetarian meal for a weeknight. Prepare 8 to 10 ounces of whole wheat linguine according to package instructions. In a large skillet, saute 1 diced onion and red pepper in olive oil. When soft, add 2 cloves minced garlic. Add 1 can drained, rinsed white beans and heat through. Add 1 cup vegetable stock, a few tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, red pepper flakes and coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper. Smash about half of the beans to thicken sauce. Mix sauce with drained, cooked pasta and sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese and more parsley. Green salad with grape tomatoes on the side. ...

    The “1905” Salad can serve as a main dish thanks to the meat and cheese.
  3. Easy Weeknight Meals: Hot Italian Sausage-Gnocchi Soup recipe and more


    Mon | Meatless meal

    Make a quick-and-easy Greek Frittata for dinner tonight. Start by sauteing chopped fresh spinach in olive oil in an oven-safe skillet. Add roughly chopped kalamata olives and chopped fresh basil to 8 beaten eggs. (You could also use 1 or 2 teaspoons of dried Greek herbs.) Pour over spinach and, using a heatproof rubber spatula, gently pull cooked eggs back from edge of skillet and tilt pan, allowing any uncooked egg to run to cleared edge of skillet. Repeat this process, working your way around the skillet, until the egg on top is mostly set but still moist, 1 to 2 minutes. Sprinkle with feta cheese crumbles and place in a 350-degree oven to finish. Serve with green salad....

  4. #CookClub recipe No. 33: Baked Macaroni and Cheese with Panko Crust (with video)


    It's a new year and we start a new slate of recipes for #CookClub.

    While everyone is working off the holiday sweets and pounds, I still think a dose of comfort food is good for the more chilly days of January. For me, that includes hot cheese.

    So I give you #CookClub recipe No. 33, Baked Macaroni and Cheese with Panko Crust. Because it fills a 9- by 13-inch baking dish it feeds a crowd and if you have less than a crowd, it reheats nicely....

    #Cookclub recipe #33 is Baked Macaroni and Cheese with Panko crust.
  5. Easy weeknight meals: Crispy Cajun Chicken With Bell Pepper Slaw


    Mon | Meatless meal

    If you've got any leftover dried cranberries, break them out for Wild Rice Salad With Cranberries and Pecans. This is a light vegetarian meal and quite appropriate for this time of the year. To 1 ½ cups of cooked wild rice add ½ cup dried cranberries, ¾ cup toasted pecan halves and a couple of diced scallions or 1 leek. Dress with a vinaigrette made of 3 tablespoons each olive oil and apple cider vinegar, plus 2 teaspoons each orange zest and honey....

  6. New books help us ring in new year with better eating


    There are three things of which we can be certain: death, taxes and the publication of healthy-eating cookbooks at the dawn of a new year.

    New guides to juicing and interesting whole grains, among other 2015 trends, coincide with our new-year resolve to take better care of ourselves. For the most part, we've indulged in culinary pleasures since Halloween. That's two solid months of candy, pies, cookies and creamed just-about-anything. ...

  7. Easy weeknight meals: Kale and Cauliflower Alfredo and more



    Meatless meal

    There's some talk that cauliflower will be the It Vegetable of 2015, so it's fitting that cruciferous florets mingle with yesteryear's hot veggie in Kale and Cauliflower Alfredo (recipe, right). Pureed cooked cauliflower is what gives the sauce its creaminess.


    Flavor boost

    To make Goat Cheese and Shrimp Quesadillas, saute 1 onion and 1 minced garlic clove in 2 tablespoons olive oil for about 3 minutes. Add peeled, uncooked medium shrimp, and cook until pink. (You'll need about ⅓ pound for each serving.) Remove from skillet. Layer cooked shrimp on a medium-sized flour tortilla with knobs of goat cheese and some shredded Jack cheese. Top with another tortilla and place in skillet; cook about 2 minutes on each side over medium heat, until cheese melts. Top with slices of ripe avocado. ...

  8. 10 ideas for your 2015 travel bucket list


    With 2014 in the rearview mirror, it's time to start plotting travel for 2015.

    But where to go in year MMXV?

    That answer depends on your finances and your particular travel profile. Are you adventurous? Will you be moving about as a family, single or couple? Do you like history? Are you into nature? Do you want to fly or drive, or some of both?

    I divide time on the road into two categories: travel and vacation....

    The Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe, N.M., offers classes for adults. Here, students work on their pastel drawings in front of the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture.
  9. Food writers offer their favorite New Year's Eve appetizers


    New Year's Eve is all about nibbles. And, no, I am not talking about the kiss at midnight.

    Appetizers, hors d'oeuvres, little plates, whatever you'd like to call them, are the standard party fare for the last night of 2014. Chips and salsa, a cold shrimp ring and cheese and crackers are on the typical menu, but it seems like a little more effort is in order. After all, serious diet penance starts the next day. Or the day after....

    Beef Tenderloin With Blue Cheese and Chorizo Port Wine Sauce is a showstopper. The recipe yields roughly 30 bite-sized appetizers.
  10. Easy weeknight meals: Hoppin' John Noodle Bowls for a new year


    New Year's edition

    Mon | Meatless meal

    Rigatoni With White Bean Sauce is a muscular dish that gets deep flavor from Swiss cheese, making it an unusual take on mac and cheese. To make the sauce, heat a large saucepan and saute 1 cup chopped onion and 3 cloves minced garlic in 2 tablespoons of melted butter, until tender. Stir in ¼ cup flour and freshly ground pepper. Pour in 2 ⅔ cups milk all at once and cook for another minute. Add 3 cups shredded Swiss cheese and, when it melts, stir in 2 cans drained Northern beans and 1 can drained diced chiles. This is enough sauce for 1 pound of cooked pasta. Green salad on the side....

  11. White lasagna is a good make-ahead Christmas Eve meal


    The question: What can you prepare for Christmas Eve dinner that can be made ahead and eaten whenever? It must be something that will work around the schedules of churchgoers, late arrivers, eager youngsters, adult children making several stops, and last-minute wrappers (or, heaven forbid, shoppers).

    The answer: lasagna.

    This workhorse layered Italian casserole fulfills lots of the requirements for a Christmas Eve dinner. It can be made in advance and stays warm for hours (or is easily reheated) as stragglers come and go. Warm bread on the side and a Caesar salad are fine accompaniments. Pick up Italian pastries, cannoli for one, and set out cookies for dessert. This is a meal that can be eaten in fits and starts, or as a sit-down dinner....

    A sumptuous White Seafood Lasagna, with shrimp, scallops and crab, is perfect for Christmas Eve, and it can be made in advance.
  12. Easy weeknight meals: Recipe for Turkey Chili and more ideas


    Christmas Edition

    Mon | Meatless meal

    Your easy Middle Eastern menu will buy you all kinds of time tonight. And time is what we need Christmas week. Make a Tabbouleh Salad using a kit from the natural food aisle and serve with Roasted Red Pepper Hummus Dip and crackers. To make the dip, mix prepared red pepper hummus with feta cheese crumbles and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Serve with some whole roasted almonds and dried apricots....

  13. #CookClub recipe No. 32: Baked Eggs in Ham Cups


    I like the idea of the overnight breakfast casserole for Christmas morning, but sometimes that's just too much food for a small group.

    And, honestly, leftover egg casserole isn't usually a big draw.

    So cue up #CookClub recipe No. 32, Baked Eggs in Ham Cups.

    I've liked this recipe since the first time I tested it for the Taste section in 2009. I hope you will give it a try and share your photos and comments on Instagram. ...

    The original recipe for Eggs Baked in Ham calls for two eggs, but you can see how the ham cup fell apart with the additional egg. Better to use just one.
  14. Easy weeknight meals: Baked cod with artichokes, olives and more


    Mon | Meatless meal

    Open-Face Roasted Veggie Melts pair amiably with steaming mugs of tomato soup. For the veggies, coat strips of red pepper and slices of portobello mushrooms with olive oil and season with coarse salt. Place in a single layer on a baking sheet and roast for about 20 minutes at 400 degrees. Set aside. Toast bread and then spread with mixture of mayo and minced garlic. Spoon on roasted veggies and top with slices of Gouda cheese. Broil for about 5 minutes or until cheese is bubbling and a bit browned. ...

  15. On the 12th Day of Christmas Cookies: Black Mountain Cookies


    There are cookies and then there are Black Mountain Cookies, also known as MRCs, meal replacement cookies.

    Two of these and you don't need to eat dinner. They are that filling and satisfying.

    The chocolate cookie is soft and threaded with chopped walnuts, though pecans would be a worthy substitute.

    After the cookies are done and transferred from the baking sheet to a wire rack, you'll put a marshmallow piece on top. The heat from the cookie will slightly melt the marshmallow and cause it to adhere to the cookie. ...

    26. Black Mountain Cookie