Food For The Soul

This is a winter when we need warmth more than ever and we’ll likely be cooking for ourselves. As a fun activity, our Tribe decided to share some of our favorite recipes to start a Yalo cookbook! Hearty soups, cheesy plates of pasta, and even some Super Bowl snacks. Each season, we plan to add more scrumptious dishes and yummy snacks, so at the end of a year, we have a collection of tasty foods. (And, when we can finally be all together again, bring some of these to a company outing!)

Now that we’re out of 2020 … a year that has tested our souls … here are some foods that are good for the soul:


By Arnold Huffman, President/CEO

  • 2 boxes of Cheeseburger Hamburger Helper
  • +2 lbs. of ground turkey
  • +6 cloves of garlic
  • +1 whole yellow onion
  • +3 serrano peppers
  1. Brown the meat
  2. Follow the Cheeseburger Hamburger Helper recipe on box
  3. Add all veggies when you add the macaroni

Olive Garden Zappa Toscana (but a bit healthier)

By Maggie Tyma, Business Analyst

  • 1 lb. ground spicy Italian sausage – (mild can be substituted)
  • 8 slices bacon, diced – (divided)
  • 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and diced
  • 2 cloves garlic – minced
  • 2 Tbsp flour
  • 32 oz chicken stock
  • 4 large russet potatoes, peeled and diced into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 cup canned coconut milk
  • 1/2 bunch kale (a couple of handfuls) – de-stemmed and torn into bite sized pieces
  • Salt and pepper, – to taste
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Dash of cayenne
  1. In a frying pan: drizzle oil and add the minced onion and garlic. Sauté until fragrant. Sprinkle flour over onion and garlic, then stir to combine. Remove the contents and put into a slow cooker. Pour in chicken stock, stirring as you pour. Add in potatoes.
  2. Add the sausage to the frying pan crumbling as it cooks until it just begins to brown. Then add to the slow cooker.
  3. Let cook on low for 6 hours or high for 4 hours.
  4. While it cooks fry bacon is residual sausage grease until crisp, then remove to plate with the sausage. Crumble the bacon. Leave to the side until done. 
  5. When potatoes are fork-tender it is ready.  Add in most of the crumbled bacon, coconut milk and kale.  Stir and cook 5-10 minutes until kale is wilted.
  6. Taste and season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes and cayenne if desired.  Top with remaining bacon and enjoy!

Skyline Lasagna

By Rachel Stallard, Sr. Content Director

  • Lasagna noodles
  • 1 cup cheddar
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan
  • 1/3 cup mozzarella
  • 3 cans skyline chili
  1. Layer 1: Cooked lasagna noodles
  2. Layer 2: 1/2 cup cheddar and 1 can Skyline chili
  3. Layer 3: Cooked lasagna noodles
  4. Layer 4: 1/3 cup Parmesan; 1/3 cup mozzarella; 1 can Skyline chili
  5. Layer 5: Cooked lasagna noodles
  6. Top layer: 1/2 cup cheddar and 1 can Skyline chili
  7. Cover with aluminum foil and bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes
  8. Top with hot sauce!

Proper Bacon

By Jon Bishop, Design Systems Architect

This recipe creates perfectly textured bacon. Bacon your family and friends will dream about. It is both crispy and chewy. Every slice is cooked evenly and to perfection. It retains its tenderness in the fridge for up to a week. And, the best part, the cleanup is insanely easy with no scrubbing necessary.

  • 1lb of thick-cut bacon (10-12 strips)

*Note: Ask for a “pack from the back” at your local grocer’s butcher


Step 1 – The Secret is in the Name

It’s weirdly obvious, but the big trick is to pull your bacon out of the frying pan and bake it in the oven.

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
  • Line a large baking tray with tinfoil. Make sure to cover the bottom and sides! Use heavy-duty grill foil for maximum coverage.
  • Lay 10-12 strips of thick cut bacon into the pan. Try to keep the strips from touching or overlapping.
  • Cook for 28-32 minutes. Go do something else until your timer goes off.
Step 2 – Let It Sit

Once you’ve pulled your tray of bacon from the oven, set the tray on a counter.

  • Use tongs to transfer the hot bacon from the tray onto a paper-towel lined plate.
  • Place 4-6 strips of bacon onto the paper towel, place a new paper towel over top, press gently to pick up any extra grease, and repeat.
  • Let the bacon sit for a minimum of 10 minutes to ensure tenderness and texture.
Step 3 – Clean Your Tray
  • Place one or two paper towels onto the tinfoil to absorb excess grease
  • Fold the tinfoil inward from each edge, careful to keep the grease from spilling out at creases.
  • Tighten the folded tinfoil into a ball and throw away
Pro Tips
  1. When you bake in bulk use the paper towels from the previous batch of bacon to absorb your tray grease. It’s just economical.
  2. Store your bacon in the fridge in a storage quart Ziplock container. It’ll keep up to 7 days, if it lasts that long.
  3. Ways to eat your bacon
    • Cold: Seriously, this bacon is amazing right out of the fridge on its own, popped into a sandwich, or crumbled and added to salads.
    • Reheat: Take your already crisp, tender, chewy bacon and pop it into a frying pan on medium heat for a couple minutes. It’ll heat it nicely, add a little more texture, and you can wipe up the pan grease with half a paper towel

Eis’s Philly Cheese Steaks

By Brian Eisenberg, Technical Director

  • 2 lbs. tri tip steak
  • 3 green peppers
  • 2 large sweet white onions
  • Sliced provolone
  • Franz Outdoor rolls 6x (hoagies also work)
  • Olive oil 1-2 T
  • Butter 1-2 T
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Dice onions and peppers into small evenly sizes 1/4″ square pieces.
  2. Trim most of the fat from tri-tip and rough cut/ shave the steak into small bite sized pieces.
  3. In a seasoned iron skillet, add some olive oil and butter and salt over medium high.
  4. Add peppers and onions. Cook 3-5 min or until onion turns translucent and slightly brown around the edges.
  5. Drain into colander in sink and stash in bowl/plate.
  6. Clean colander for next step.
  7. Wipe skillet from previous step, add some more olive oil, butter, and salt.
  8. Add the shredded tri tip and cook until the pink color just disappears.
  9. Drain excess fat in colander.
  10. Wipe iron skillet clean and then add the onions/peppers and steak back together in the skillet and cook for 1-2 min.
  11. Open rolls and place 2x at a time inverted on top of skillet so the inside of the roll heats up from the steam coming off the steak and pepper and onion mix.
  12. Once the roll is hot, add 2 slices of provolone to the bottom of the (helps keep it from breaking apart).
  13. Add enough steak/onion/pepper mix to fill the roll up and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Sausage Tortellini Soup

By Kate Castrovince, Sr. Director/Executive Client Leader

  • 1 pound Italian or turkey sausage
  • 1 T. oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 cloves garlic (chopped)
  • 5 cups beef broth
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup dry red wine
  • 2 cups chopped tomato (with liquid)
  • 1 cup thinly sliced carrots
  • ½ t. basil
  • ½ t. oregano
  • 8 oz. can tomato sauce
  • 1 ½ cups sliced zucchini
  1. Sauté onion and garlic
  2. Brown sausage and drain
  3. Add all other ingredients above and simmer for 30 minutes

Additional ingredients

  • 8 oz. tortellini or little ravioli
  • 3 T. parsley
  • 1 medium green pepper (chopped)
  1. Add these ingredients to soup and simmer 45 minutes more
  2. Serve with grated parmesan cheese on top
  3. Enjoy!

Vegetable Soup

By Kate Castrovince, Sr. Director/Executive Client Leader

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 medium carrots cut into medium dice
  • 1 large yellow onion cut into medium diced
  • 2 medium cloves of garlic minced
  • 2 cups ½ inch cubed peeled butternut squash (about half a 2 Ib. squash)
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • Salt
  • 1 quart (32 oz) lower salt chicken broth (in a carton)
  • 1 14.5 oz can no-salt added diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups lightly packed, coarsely chopped kale
  • Brown rice
  1. Heat the oil in large soup pot over medium heat. 
  2. Add the carrots and onion and cook, stirring occasionally until they begin to soften, about six minutes. 
  3. Add the garlic and cook for a minute more. 
  4. Add the squash, cayenne pepper and one teaspoon salt. 
  5. Stir to combine. 
  6. Add the broth and tomatoes with their juice. 
  7. Bring to a boil. 
  8. Reduce heat to medium, then cover and simmer for ten minutes. 
  9. Add the kale and cook uncovered until the squash is tender and the kale is wilted. About ten minutes more. 
  10. Season to taste with more salt and/or cayenne pepper.

Chicken and Dumplings Soup

By Sarah Scheider, Business Analyst

Cozy Chicken & Dumplings | Tasty Recipes - Cooking videos and recipes
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast, cubed
  • 1 cup diced yellow onion
  • 1 cup sliced carrot
  • 3 cloves garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 ½ cups frozen peas
  • 4 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 1 ⅓ cups heavy cream
  1. In a 6-quart Dutch oven, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook until browned on both sides. Remove from the pot and set aside.
  2. Add carrot and onion and cook until just tender, about 3 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and stir for another minute, until fragrant.
  4. Reduce the heat to medium-low and add the butter and flour, stirring constantly for 3 minutes to prevent lumps from forming.
  5. Add the chicken and any accumulated juices back to the pot and stir to coat in the roux.
  6. Add the chicken broth, cream, thyme, and bay leaves and bring to a simmer. Once soup is at a simmer, add the frozen peas, cover, and cook for 15 minutes.
  7. Make the dumplings: In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, pepper, and cream. Stir until mixture comes together into single mass of dough.
  8. Using a large spoon or ice cream scoop, form the dough into small round balls about 1 inch (2 ½ cm) in diameter (the dough should yield 14-16 dumplings).
  9. Place the dough balls in the simmering soup (making sure they don’t touch), add the parsley, and cover. Let the soup simmer for 15 minutes, or until the dumplings are cooked through.
  10. Ladle into bowls, giving 1-2 dumplings per serving.

Corn Pudding

By Brandon Bradford, Operations Director

  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 package corn bread/muffin mix
  • ½ cup 2% milk
  • 1 can whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1 can cream style corn
  1. Preheat oven to 325.  In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy
  2. Add eggs one at a time
  3. Beat in sour cream
  4. Add muffin mix alternately with milk
  5. Fold in corn
  6. Pour into a greased 3qt baking dish.
  7. Bake uncovered 45-50 minutes until lightly browned

Mom’s Dressing

By Lance Shoulders, VP of Client Strategy

  • 2 boxes Jiffy cornbread mix
  • 1 can chicken broth
  • 1 can cream of celery soup
  • 2-3 slices of bread
  • 1 cup of onions
  • 1 cup celery
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • Dash of salt
  • ¼ tsp. pepper
  • 1 tsp. sage
  1. Sauté onions and celery in butter until onions become translucent
  2. In a large bowl mix cornbread, chicken broth, cream of celery, onions, celery, eggs, mushroom soup, salt, pepper and sage
  3. Tear bread into small pieces and add to other ingredients
  4. Pour into greased baking dish
  5. Heat at 375 degrees for ½ hour (should be brown)

Aunt Stacey’s Mac and Cheese

By Lance Shoulders, VP of Client Strategy

  • 1 cup macaroni
  • ¼ cup chopped onion
  • 1 T. butter
  • 1 T. flour
  • Dash pepper
  • 1 ¼ cups milk
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  1. Cook macaroni
  2. Cook onions and butter in saucepan
  3. Add flour and pepper
  4. Add milk
  5. Stir until thick and bubbly
  6. Add shredded cheese and stir until melted
  7. Stir in macaroni
  8. Pour into casserole dish
  9. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes

North End Sunday Gravy

By Kevin MacConnell, Sr. Director/Executive Client Leader

  • 1lb sweet Italian sausage
  • 1recipe meatballs (recipe follows)
  • 12lb piece beef
  • 12lb piece pork or 2 -3 lean pork chops
  • 12cup olive oil
  • 1medium onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • dried basil
  • dried mint
  • red pepper flakes
  • 12tablespoon sugar (to taste)
  • 1 (12 ounce) can tomato paste
  • 2 (28 ounce) cans ground tomatoes
  • 2 (28 ounce) cans water
  • salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • 1lb ground beef
  • 14 lb ground pork
  • 1cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 12 cup milk
  • 12 cup fresh parsley or 8 teaspoons dried parsley flakes
  • 14 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 12 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced


  1. Fry beef and pork in 1/4 cup of olive oil in a large saucepot.
  2. Remove meats as they brown and add another 1/4 cup oil to the juices in the pan.
  3. Saute the onion, garlic, and 2 pinches each of the seasonings until the onion is transparent.
  4. Stir in the tomato paste and cook, stirring, until the paste melts into the oil. This is called “Italian roux”.
  5. Stir in an extra couple of pinches of the seasonings. Add the tomatoes and blend.
  6. Fill the two tomato cans with water and add water until the sauce is as thick as you like it. Remember the sauce is going to cook down.
  7. Let the sauce come to a boil and add salt and pepper and an additional 2 pinches of seasonings.
  8. Return the meat to the pan and simmer, uncovered, for 2 hours. Stir every 15 minutes or so using a wooden spoon.
  9. Brown the sausages in some olive oil and add to sauce with sugar to taste. Simmer another hour.
  10. Make meatballs and either fry in oil or bake in oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Add to sauce.
  11. Cook for an additional hour. Add water as it cooks if you think it needs it, but you should have a sauce that doesn’t separate on the plate.
  12. Remove meats and let sauce settle for a few minutes until fat rises to the top. Skim as much fat as possible from the sauce. The less fat it contains, the better the sauce.

Philly Cheesesteak Crescent Ring

By Mike Lonergan

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 large green bell pepper, sliced (or 1/2 green and 1/2 red bell pepper if desired)
  • 1 lb. steak strips, precooked thinly sliced *see notes
  • 2 Pillsbury original crescent rolls, tubes
  • 12 slices provolone cheese
For the Sauce:
  • 2 tbsp sour cream
  • 2 tbsp mayo
  • 1 tsp horseradish, prepared
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Sauté the onions and peppers in the melted butter until soft, about 5 to 7 minutes.
  3. Stir in the steak strips to mingle with the onions and peppers then remove from heat, drain any excess liquid.
  4. Unwrap the crescent rolls and separate into 8 small rectangles. Arrange on a non-greased 12 inch pizza pan or a parchment lined baking sheet in the shape of a sun, leaving a small circle (about 2 1/2 inches wide) in the center. Half of each crescent dough rectangle should hang over the edge of the pizza pan.
  5. Place 6 slices of provolone cheese around the half of the crescent dough rectangle that is on the pizza pan. Top with the well drained steak, onions and peppers, making sure to keep the filling in a circular tube around the crescent dough. Top with the remaining cheese.
  6. Carefully pick up the overhanging crescent dough and enclose the filling, tucking the dough underneath in the center of the ring, so all the filling is enclosed. (some might peek out, and that’s ok).
  7. Bake for 20 to 23 minutes until dough is cooked through and is a deep golden brown. Let cool slightly before slicing.
  8. Meanwhile combine the ingredients for the sauce and whisk together. Serve the sauce with the cheesesteak sandwiches. Enjoy!

*this is a great way to use up leftover steak. If you do not have leftover steak, you can grill 1 lb of fresh ribeye steaks and then slice into thin strips when cooked.

We hope these foods bring you warmth and comfort this winter and throughout the year!

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