Chefs of the Evening

Deborah Webber’s First Lady took home Chef of the Evening honors at a recent OCWS mini-tasting. Deborah, a six-year member of the OCWS along with husband Michael, had never tried the recipe.

“The original recipe said to use crackers for the dip,” Deborah says. “I like the idea that the guests can just pick up a baguette with the dip already on it and not hold up others while you take the time to put the dip on yourself.”

First Lady Dip


4 ounces Cream Cheese

1 cup mayonnaise

1/2 cup diced yellow onion

1 cup dried and sweetened cranberries

1 cup chopped walnuts

1 cup shredded Swiss cheese

1 cup chopped cooked bacon

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

Sour dough or ciabatta baguette, sliced into approximately ¼ to ½ inch thick pieces

Extra Virgin Olive Oil


MIX together at high speed the Cream Cheese and mayonnaise in a large bowl until a creamy consistency.

STIR the onion, cranberries, walnuts, Swiss cheese, bacon, salt and pepper into the creamed mixture until thoroughly combined and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to overnight

Just prior to serving.

BRUSH the sliced baguettes on both sides lightly with extra virgin olive oil.

TOAST the Oiled Baguettes in a sauté pan over medium heat until golden on both sides.

SPOON the dip mixture onto the toasted baguette.

SERVE immediately.



2 lbs. ground turkey (or beef)

1 cup breadcrumbs (preferably seasoned)

2 eggs

½ cup chopped parsley (dried parsley is ok)

1/3 cup ketchup

3 TBSP minced onions (I usually use fresh onion and sauté)

2 TBSP soy sauce

¼ tsp garlic powder

¼ tsp pepper


16 ounce can jellied or whole cranberry

12 ounce chili sauce

1 TBSP brown sugar

1 TBSP lemon juice


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine ingredients for sauce and mix well.

Pour a small amount into a casserole and then place the meatballs on top.  (just cover the bottom of the dish with the sauce.)


In a large bowl, combine ground turkey, breadcrumbs, parsley, eggs, ketchup, onion, soy sauce, garlic powder and pepper.  Mix well and form into small balls.  Cover the meatballs with the rest of the sauce and cook at 350 for about 30 – 45 minutes depending on the size of the meatballs.

Courtesy OCWS member Shelley Cohen, who says this recipe is easy to prepare and can be frozen or served fresh.