Cheryl’s Cuisine: March 2019

By Cheryl Radkiewicz

Well, snow is still flying and Lent is upon us…

For some unknown reason, during the year it’s easy to fix meatless meals.  In fact, my husband and I try to keep Mondays as “meatless” and other days we might feel like seafood (meatless again).  

But now that Lent is here and we still adhere to the “Meatless Friday” rules, sometimes we feel like something different rather than a “veggie” dinner or even potato pancakes (although my husband could eat them five days a week).   

Yes, there’s always pierogi, haluski (noodles and cabbage), and pizza, however, I need to add some new items to our Lenten menus.  So, I’ve come up with some great ideas for Meatless Fridays that will surely please your palate.

The first three recipes are hearty,  “meal in a bowl” soups, perfect for cold weather  and “Meatless Fridays.”

Chesapeake Bay Crab Bisque:

4 Tbsp. butter, melted
1 small onion, finely chopped
3 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
2 cups light cream
2 cups whole milk
1 lb. backfin crabmeat
3 Tbsp. Sherry
Salt and cayenne pepper, to taste

Saute’ onion in butter until translucent.  Stir in flour. Add cream and milk, stirring constantly to make a roux.  Simmer 5 minutes, stirring. Add crabmeat, Sherry and seasonings. Heat thoroughly.  Serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.


Cheddar Cheese Soup:

1/2 cup chopped onion
cheese1/2 cup butter or margarine ( I always use butter)
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. salt (or less)
4 cups milk
1 can ( 10 3/4 oz.) cream of mushroom soup or cream of vegetable soup, undiluted
3 cups (12 oz.) shredded Cheddar cheese
3/4-1 cup vegetable broth
Fresh chives, optional, for garnish

In large saucepan, saute’ onion in butter until tender.  Combine flour, mustard, paprika and salt; add to saucepan. Stir to make a smooth paste.  Gradually milk and soup; cook and stir until thick, about 10 minutes. Add cheese and broth, stirring until cheese is melted.  Makes 2 quarts.


Cream of Potato Soup:

8 medium potatoes, diced
1 large onion
2  cloves garlic, finely diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 tsp. salt
1-13 oz. can evaporated milk
1/3 cup butter

Saute’ onions, celery and garlic in butter; set aside.  Add potatoes to large stockpot (about 6 quarts) which has been filled with water to 3/4 full.  Cook potatoes until tender. Add rest of ingredients and taste for seasoning. Simmer 30 minutes.  Before serving add evaporated milk and blend well with immersion blender.


Angel Hair with Broccoli:

10393951 bunch fresh broccoli
1 Tbsp. butter
2 scallions, diced
1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed
2 Tbsp. white wine
1/2 stick butter, melted
1/4 cup light olive oil
1 lb. angel hair pasta
Grated Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese, to taste

Cook broccoli florets into boiling water 3-4 minutes; drain.  Saute’ scallions and garlic in 1 Tbsp. butter, about 2 minutes; add wine.  Cook 5 minutes; add melted butter and olive oil, then broccoli. Heat thoroughly.  Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain. Toss broccoli mixture with pasta.  Serve at once with cheese.


Baked Scallops:

1 1/2 lbs. sea scallops
6 Tbsp. butter
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 clove garlic, pressed
1 tsp. grated onion
2 Tbsp. minced parsley
2 tsp. lemon juice
2/3 cup soft bread crumbs

Cut scallops into 1/2″ slices.  Melt 3 Tbsp. of the butter and mix in salt, pepper, garlic, onion, parsley and lemon juice.  Stir in scallops, coating them well. Place scallops in buttered pie dish or individual ramekins.   Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Melt remaining 3 Tbsp. butter; toss bread crumbs in it and scatter them on top of scallops.  Bake scallops for 10-12 minutes.


How-To-Baked-Salmon-Recipe-10Teriyaki Salmon:

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
4 salmon steaks (about 6 oz. each)

In large resealable plastic bag or shallow glass container, combine vegetable oil, lemon juice, soy sauce, dry mustard, ginger and garlic powder; mix well.   Set aside 1/2 cup for basting and refrigerate. Add salmon to remaining marinade; cover and refrigerate for 1 1/2 hours, turning once. Drain and discard marinade.  Place salmon on broiler pan. Broil 3-4″ from heat for 5 minutes. Brush with reserved marinade; turn and broil for 5 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork.  Brush with marinade. Serves 4.


Baked Swordfish Steak:

2 lbs. swordfish, 1″ thick
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup dry sherry
Dash of cayenne pepper
1 1/2 cups sour cream
1 tsp. paprika
1 cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Wipe steaks dry and sprinkle with salt and pepper and arrange them in buttered baking dish.  Mix sherry, cayenne, sour cream and paprika, then spoon it onto the steaks. Scatted grated cheese on top, and bake for 10 minutes or until done.  Serve steaks smothered in sauce. Garnish with parsley.

Ash Wednesday Begins Season of Lent

ashToday, Ash Wednesday, March 1, will mark the start of the solemn 40-day season of Lent. Parishes throughout the 11-county Diocese of Scranton will distribute ashes as a sign of penance and to remind individuals of Lent’s call to a more complete gospel lifestyle.

At the Cathedral of Saint Peter in Scranton, ashes will be distributed during the 6:30 a.m., 8 a.m., 12:10 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. Masses. The Most Reverend Joseph C. Bambera, D.D., J.C.L., Bishop of Scranton, will be the principal celebrant of the 12:10 p.m. Pontifical Mass. CTV: Catholic Television will broadcast the Mass.

Ash Wednesday commemorates the ancient rite of placing the sign of the cross on the forehead with the reminder “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.” Lent’s invitation to repentance and conversion may also be found in the optional words of this rite: “Repent, and believe in the Gospel.” These ashes are gathered from the burned branches of palm carried the previous year in the Palm Sunday procession.

The Office for Parish Life is conducting an Ash Wednesday Retreat from 9 a.m.-2:30 p.m. in the Diocesan Pastoral Center, 330 Wyoming Avenue, Scranton. All are welcome. To register, call the Office at 570-207-2213.

Since, the Church encourages us to make confession a regular part of our spiritual life, especially during the holy season of Lent, parishes are participating in a Lenten initiative called The Light Is On for You, which means that every Monday evening during the Lenten season, beginning on the first Monday of Lent, March 6, and continuing through Monday of the last full week of Lent, April 3, confessions will be heard in every parish from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

The Diocesan website contains a variety of resources to help parishes extend the invitation to The Light Is On for You, and to help penitents prepare for and participate in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. See (Parish Life Office menu tab, then The Light Is On for You). The site also includes a Parish Directory listing parishes by location. Note: In parishes with multiple worship sites, call the parish office to confirm the site where the Monday evening confessions will be heard. Also check the specific parish bulletins or websites for details.

During Lent the Cathedral of Saint Peter will offer several ways in which the faithful can deepen their relationship with Jesus and come to know him in a more intimate way.

On Fridays the Stations of the Cross will be prayed following the 12:10 p.m. Mass and Novena to St. John Neumann. The Stations will air on CTV live on March 3 after the 12:10 p.m. Mass on that day and then on succeeding Fridays at 11:30 a.m., 2:00 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.

On Sundays, March 5, 12, 19 and 26; April 2 and 9, adoration of the Blessed Sacrament will begin at the conclusion of the 5 p.m. Sunday Mass. Evening Prayer and Benediction begin at 6:30 p.m.



March Calendar of Events

UNICO Pig Roast

The Keystone Chapter of UNICO National is sponsoring a Charity Pig Roast as a community fundraiser, with the Voluntary Action Center as the primary beneficiary, on Saturday, April 9, at Fiorelli’s Banquet Facilities, Peckville. Tickets are available for $50 each, and the event is open to the public. This year’s theme is “Denim and Diamonds”.  A suggested choice of attire can be Blue Jeans to Black Tie.  This event will run from 6-10:30 p.m. and will feature a two-hour open bar with hors d’oeuvres during the first hour, and a sumptuous Italian Pig Roast buffet during the second hour. also featured will be raffles, a photo booth; a dance presentation, and entertainment by “E.J. the D.J.” for the entire evening.  Tax deductible sponsorships are available at $100, $50 and $25.  Reservations must be made by April 1, by calling Jim Mack at 570- 342-7975.  For sponsorships, contact Mark McDade at 570-343-7009.

Crimson Company’s Circus McGurkus

Put on your hat, your socks and your shoes or come any-which-way that you choose and join the Dunmore High School Crimson Company for the Circus McGurkus Carnival.

You may come dressed up as your favorite Dr. Seuss or storybook character.

Dr. Seuss storybook characters will be there to greet you. A continental breakfast of assorted pastries, fruit, yogurt, granola, milk, and coffee is included in your admission along with lots of fun activites for boys and girls! There will be a story corner, coloring and sticker activity, face painting, goodie bags, crafts, games, basket raffles, and a “Green Eggs” hunt to name just a few of the fun activities we have planned. We will also have a “selfie station” and each attendee will have a FREE professional picture taken by Mr. Rich Banick with our “Seussical” characters!

We hope you can join us on Saturday March 5, 2016 from 10 a.m. until noon  at the Dunmore High School Cafeteria. Admission is $10.00 per person.  

Lenten Concerts

In a 67-year tradition of inspiring prayer and meditation through music, the Catholic Choral Society will present two Lenten concerts. The first concert on Sunday, March 6, will be held at SS.. Peter and Paul Parish Church, 13 Hudson Road, Plains, at 3 p.m. Pastor is Rev. John C. Lambert. The second concert will be presented at St. Paul’s Church, 1510 Penn Ave., Scranton, on Sunday, March 13 at 3 p.m. Pastor is Msgr. Neil Van Loon.

Both concerts are open to the public free of charge. Dr. Thomas Rittenhouse and Brenda Grunza are co-presidents of  the Catholic Choral Society. Ann Manganiello is music director of this group while Jean Shields is accompanist. Information may be obtained by calling 570-575-1040 and also at

Knee Surgery Seminar

Orthopedic surgeon John Doherty, M.D., will present a free seminar on knee replacement surgery. on Wednesday, March 1, at 5 p.m. at the McGowan Large Conference Room at Regional Hospital, 746 Jefferson Ave., Scranton. Dr. Doherty, a member of the Regional Hospital medical staff, will discuss techniques to help prevent, diagnose and treat arthritis in the knees.

Free parking will be offered in the hospital parkade. Reservations may be made by calling 570-348-7370.

Meatless Meal for Lent

Cyril and Methodius Ukrainian Catholic Church, Olyphant, will host a “Meatless Meal for Lent” featuring a baked haddock fish dinner on Friday, March 18, at the Regal Room 216 Lackawanna Ave., Olyphant, from 5- 7 p.m. Sit down or take out is available. Call 580-383-9487 for reservations. Pre-sold dinners are $13 per ticket.  Web site is  Rev. Nestor Iwasiw is pastor.

Wind Band Concert

Marywood University’s department of music, theatre, and dance will present the Marywood University Senior Wind Band Celebration on Saturday, March 5, at 7 p.m., in the Sette LaVerghetta Center for Performing Arts. This event is free and open to the public.

Selected high school musicians from throughout the region will meet at Marywood University for two days of instruction from internationally recognized band conductors and clinicians. David Kish, D.M.A., director of bands and associate professor of music at Metropolitan State University of Denver, and Michael Knight, D.M.A., assistant professor of music at St. Norbert College in De Pere, Wis., will lead participants in the Grand Finale Concert.

For information, call F. David Romines, D.M.A., music, theatre, and dance department co-chair at Marywood, at (570) 348-6268, or visit

Marywood Painting Exhibition

Marywood University is presenting a painting exhibition, Narratives Seen,  in the Mahady Gallery, on the first floor of the Shields Center for Visual Arts through April 3, 2016. The exhibition, are free and open to the public.