Pasta de Banner

Pasta de Banner by Matt Banner
Videography and Production by Zachary Nicholson


Matt Banner, a freshman finance major, cooks up an original dish on the fly. Raised in a household of Italian chefs, Banner shows the techniques he learned growing up in the kitchen. Pasta de Banner is a simple, yet interesting mix of vegetables and pasta that is sure to please your taste-buds!



  •  1 cup of mushrooms
  •  1 cup of onions
  •  2 cloves
  •  1 pound of ground meat
  •  ½ cup of okra
  •  ½ teaspoon of salt
  •  ½ teaspoon of pepper
  •  1 serving size of noodles
  •  ½ cup Spaghetti Sauce



Begin by washing all of the vegetables thoroughly. Then dice the onions into small pieces. Once the onions are diced, cut the cloves into very small pieces. Also dice the okra into small chunks.

Next, place all the diced vegetables into a pan. Cook in the pan until the onions begin to caramelize or turn light brown.

After the vegetables are cooked place ground meat into pan and cook until meat is dark brown (or desired meat preference.)

Once the meat is cooked, place the vegetables and the meat in the same pan. Stir the vegetables and the meat together.

Next, bring water to a boil. Add pasta noodles once water is boiling. Cook pasta in boiling water for approximately 10-12 minutes.

Once the pasta is cooked and ready, add it to the stir-fry of vegetables and meat.

Stir the noodles and stir-fry as desired. Add Spaghetti sauce and stir.

That is it! Enjoy eating your Pasta de Banner!

Pasta de Banner completed!

Pasta de Banner completed!

Greek Yogurt Chicken Salad

Greek Yogurt Chicken Salad by Cassandra Antell
Videography and Production by Jessica Valles

Junior biophysics major Cassandra Antell, cooks chicken for a fresh salad. The dish is simple and tasty, perfect for a quick and healthy meal during a busy week.


  • 2 cooked chicken breasts
  • 1/2 granny smith apple
  • 2 stalks of celery
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries (Crasins)
  • 2 tbsp. chopped almonds
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 1/4-cup plain Greek yogurt
  • Pinch of salt & pepper
  • Squeeze of lemon juice
  • Club crackers


Season the chicken to your liking and cook it thoroughly. Shred the cooked chicken and set it aside in a mixing bowl. Chop the celery, apples and onion then add it to the mixing bowl. Add the almonds and dried cranberries while also stirring in the Greek yogurt. Season with salt and pepper and serve with club crackers. This recipe makes about six servings of salad.

Greek Yogurt Chicken Salad

Greek Yogurt Chicken Salad

Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies

Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies by Morgan Pullins
Videography and Production by Bria Bell

St. Mary’s Women’s Basketball player Morgan Pullins, a sophomore and exercise sports science major, showcases her technique on baking peanut butter cookies. As she takes us step by step, Morgan shares background information on why this tasty treat is significant to her personally.


• 3/4-cup Jif® Creamy Peanut Butter
• 1/2 cup Crisco® All-Vegetable Shortening
• 1 1/4 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
• 3 tablespoons milk
• 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
• 1 large egg
• 1 3/4 cups Pillsbury BEST® All Purpose flour
• 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
• 3/4 teaspoon salt


HEAT oven to 375°F. Combine peanut butter, shortening, brown sugar, milk and vanilla in large bowl. Beat with electric mixer on medium speed until well blended. Add egg, beating just until blended.
COMBINE flour, baking soda and salt. Add to creamed mixture at low speed, mixing just until blended. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart onto baking sheet. Flatten slightly in a crisscross pattern with tines of fork.
BAKE 7 to 8 minutes or until set and just beginning to brown. Cool on baking sheet 2 minutes. Remove to wire rack to cool completely.

Makes 3 dozen


Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies!

Baked Meatball Parmesan

Baked Meatball Parmesan by David Wilkins                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Videography and Production by William W. Gilbert

Chef David Wilkins is an Engineering major. Here, he shows us how to make Baked Parmesan Meatballs. The recipe has been passed down through his family.

Ingredient List
• 1 lb. ground beef
• ½ cup grated parmesan cheese
• ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
• 1 egg
• 1 clove garlic, minced


Pre-heat the oven to 375°F. While the oven is warming, mix all of the ingredients in a bowl. Using your hands, form mix into 12- 2″ meatballs. Place in a greased, foil-lined, 15x10x1-inch pan, then, bake for 25 min. or until done (160°F).

Serving Suggestion

Try serving with your favorite hot cooked pasta and sauce, and a quick-bagged salad tossed with your favorite dressing.
Substitute 1 Tbsp. parsley flakes for the chopped fresh parsley.
Prepare using 1 pkg. (16 oz.) ground turkey.


3rd Annual Magazine Launch Party

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The Taste of StMU magazine launch party expanded to a new location with a new sponsor, new donors, a new scholarship, a new university president and two new student design winners for the third annual event on Wednesday, November 28, 2012.

St. Mary’s alumnus Jose Trevino of All Events San Antonio sponsored the launch party, establishing the Taste of StMU scholarship to honor the winner of the “Professionals’ Choice” award.

Rachel Grahmann (see magazine) won the scholarship and Professionals’ Choice award as determined by a committee of professional consultants who work in the fields of graphic design, marketing and food catering. New University President Tom Mengler presented her with a certificate along with a St. Mary’s University bookstore gift card. Her respective “chef,” Kristina Garcia, received a commemorative award plate imprinted with the Taste of StMU logo.

Over 70 alumni, faculty, staff and guests attended the event and voted Nick Canedo’s magazine as the winner of the “People’s Choice” award. He also received a bookstore gift card while his “chef,” Kirsten Acosta, received an apron imprinted with the Taste of StMU logo.

The magazine launch party gave graphic design students the opportunity to showcase what they have learned throughout the semester by editing and creating their own 20-page edition of Taste of StMU magazine, complete with ads, photographs and stories. The chefs featured in their magazines provided the food for the event.

On the menu were banana lumpia, red velvet cupcakes, chocolate chip muffins, chicken fettuccine alfredo, blueberry cheesecake, fideo, Hershey’s chocolate cake and bizcochuelo con durazno.

The event also featured a trio of live jazz musicians on piano, saxophone and bass, and a slideshow was displayed which showcased magazine covers and short videos produced by former students—a number of whom were in attendance.

The graphic design class thanks all those who supported the event. See Flickr photo album.

Hershey’s Chocolate Cake

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Hershey’s Chocolate cake  by Kimberly Quintanilla
Story and Photos by Danielle Torres 

Balancing baking and book work is never easy, but baking has always been part of Junior Health Administration major Kimberly Quintanilla’s life. She grew up watching her mom bake all the time. She enjoys cooking when she is bored, for fun and to relax. She chose to bake a Hershey’s chocolate cake because it is one of her favorite pastries.

Quintanilla says she loves attending St. Mary’s because the atmosphere is so friendly. “I love all my professors and the hospitality here is amazing,” she says.

Quintanilla enjoys eating pasta along with hot Cheetos and cream cheese. Her favorite kind of food to make is chicken pasta, even though she doesn’t get to make it much here at school because of her busy schedule.

Choosing to share this recipe wasn’t hard, especially with the new installation of ovens in every residence hall on campus this year.

In particular, she enjoys cake and chocolate so she had no problem combining the two to make one sweet pastry.

Some tips Quintanilla offers when preparing this are to “make sure to pre heat the oven, don’t be afraid to use lots of Choco powder and even if it might not look pretty it still will taste great.”

Cake Ingredients 

  • 2 c sugar
  • 1-3/4 c all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 c HERSHEY’S Cocoa
  • 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1-1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 c milk
  • 1/2 c vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 c boiling water


  • 1/2 c (1 stick) butter or margarine
  •  2/3 c HERSHEY’S Cocoa
  •  3 c powdered sugar
  • 1/3 c milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


Preheat the oven to 350°F. Get all the ingredients and mix them in a large bowl later pour in the boiling water to help make it easier to sir. Sir until lumps are gone. Take two 9-inch pans with oil and flour so that when the cake bakes, it won’t stick to the pan. Stick both pans in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes. Take them out and let them sit for about ten minutes to cool. While the cakes are in the oven,  start making the frosting. The first thing to do is melt butter in a bowl. Then stir in cocoa. Alternately add powdered sugar and milk, beating to spreading consistency. After that is done add small amounts of additional milk, if needed. Stir in vanilla after the milk is poured. When completed, the cake feeds up to 20 servings.


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Fideo by Jose Lucio
Article and Photos by Isaac Lucio

Affordable, fast, and easy to make—if those are qualities someone is looking for in a dish, then Jose Lucio’s recipe for fideo is the right one.

Jose Lucio, nighttime supervisor of the Blume Academic Library at St. Mary’s, was born in San Antonio and has had his three children attend the university.

Lucio likes the fact that St. Mary’s is a small university, believing that the smaller class sizes are much better for students, helps students’ behavior and allows less commotion than there may be at larger schools.

Lucio’s favorite foods are fish and Mexican, so he enjoys cooking different kinds of meat.

Often, he adds in spices and decides it is right by how it looks, so he found it interesting to give the spices actual measurements for this recipe.

He chose to cook fideo for its affordability, ease of preparation and taste.

It is also something that his family has eaten for dinner just about every day for years.

“We all make it a little bit different, just cook slow, don’t rush, and remember to use a low flame,” Lucio advises.


•1 c of Water
•½ box of Vermicelli
•½ tsp of Salt
•½ tsp of Pepper
•¼ tsp of Ground Camino
•1 can of Tomato Sauce

The first thing to do to make fideo is to place a pan on a stove and pour in half a box of Vermicelli, then turn on the fire to a low setting. Using a spoon, continually stir the Vermicelli around the pan until you notice some of them turning brown. At that point, pour in a cup of water, keeping in mind the steam from it will be hot. You no longer need to stir it, just add in half a tablespoon of Salt, half a tablespoon of Pepper, and a quarter tablespoon of Ground Camino, and then wait for the water to boil. Once it’s boiling, add one can of Tomato Sauce, fill the can with water and pour it in as well – this way you can get all of it into the pan. Now all you have to do is let it sit for three to five minutes, once the time is over, turn the fire off and enjoy. This recipe can serve from one to three people, depending on how hungry they are!

Steaming Spaghetti with Meat Sauce

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Steaming Spaghetti with Meat Sauce
Story and Photos by Emily Scruggs

Priscilla Ortega, St. Mary’s University senior psychology major, prepares her signature dish, spaghetti, by following a coveted family recipe.

When she moved from her family’s home in McAllen, Texas, into a house she shares with her sister in San Antonio, her mother’s spaghetti recipe was one of the comforts of home that Ortega brought with her.

The small campus and strong sense of community are two aspects of St. Mary’s that encouraged Ortega to attend school there.

While these attributes are reminiscent of the small town Ortega grew up in, making her family’s spaghetti recipe is the best remedy when she feels homesick.

Ortega learned the pleasant blend of spices that makes up the spaghetti sauce at the age of 10, under the instruction of her mother and older sister.

Since then, cooking has been a relaxing hobby for her, especially when she feels the stress of balancing school and work.

Italian ranks at the top of her list of favorite foods, along with the Mexican dish botanas.

Though she typically likes diverse dishes, seafood remains to be one type of food that she dislikes.

After graduating from St. Mary’s in May 2012, Ortega plans to attend graduate school abroad to study international relations or mass communication.

She studied in London for a semester during her junior year and cannot wait to return.

London boasts a diverse cuisine, ranging from fish and chips to curry.

Even with the variety of food that will be available to her, Ortega will still keep her family’s spaghetti on the menu.


  • 1 large onion
  • 2 T of butter
  • 3 crushed garlic cloves
  • 1 lbs of ground beef
  • 2 tsp of garlic salt
  • 2 tsp of onion salt
  • 2 tsp of crushed red pepper
  • 2 tsp of pepper
  • 2 tsp of cumin
  • 16 oz Ragu mushroom sauce
  • 1 package of spaghetti noodles
Serves eight.

Chop onion and sauté with butter and garlic. When onion and garlic have softened, sauté ground beef until completely brown. Add to beef garlic salt, onion salt, red pepper flakes, pepper and cumin. Once everything is softened and well- cooked, pour mushroom sauce over beef and warm over low heat. Boil spaghetti noodles for 10 minutes. Once noodles are soft, serve them on a plate and cover them with beef sauce. Serve in the company of crescent rolls.

Macadamia Blondies with Caramel Maple Topping

Macadamia Blondies with Caramel Maple Topping by Kimberly Vela
Videography and Production by Veronica Luna

Kimberly Vela is an alumna and graduate student at St. Mary’s University. As a vegetarian for six years, Vela learned how to cook for herself and loves to share her recipes with her friends.


  • 2 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 6 ounces firm silken tofu
  • ¼ cup rice or soy milk
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 1 ¼ cups raw macadamias, partially chopped and partially ground

Ingredients for the topping:

  • ¼ cup nonhydrogenated margarine
  • 2 tablespoons turbinado or other brown sugar
  • ¼ cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 cup raw macadamia nuts, coarsely chopped


Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease 9 x 13 inch pan. In blender or food processor, blend tofu and soy milk until smooth. Add oil, sugar and vanilla, then blend. Combine the dry ingredients in mixing bowl and mix well. Fold in nuts. Dough will be thick. Spread in baking pan, bake 25 minutes.

Prepare topping: Mix all ingredients except nuts in saucepan. Heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat, bring to boil one minute. Stir in nuts, remove from heat. Remove blondies from oven, pour on topping, then bake 10 more minutes. Let cool completely before serving.

Green Chicken Curry

Green Chicken Curry by Nathian Mambru
Videography and Production by Gerardo Mendez

Nathian Mambru, a senior at St.Mary’s University, learned to cook from his mother at the age of four. He has since grown a love for cooking which can be enjoyed with his many dishes. In this video, Mambru prepares Green Chicken Curry, a delicious Indian dish with a kick.


  • 2 lbs skinless chicken breast, diced
  • 2 cups Basmati rice
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 half sticks of unsalted butter
  • 1 tbs ground marjoram
  • 2 tbs curry power
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1 tbs garlic powder
  • 24 oz premium coconut milk
  • 1 cup green diced chile
  • 1/2 cup jalapeno diced chile
  • salt
  • pepper


Basmati Rice: Melt half sticks of butter in saucepan. Once melted, add 2 cups of water and 1 cup of milk along with 2 cups of rice. Add a pinch of salt and pepper. Allow it to boil, then let simmer for 15 minutes. Fold rice every 10-15 minutes.

Green Chicken Curry: Add butter to frying pan and allow it to melt. Coat the chicken with some butter and season with garlic powder, salt and pepper. Put the chicken in the frying pan and let it brown and then bring the heat down to medium. In a mixing bowl, pour the coconut milk, add the diced jalapeno chile, ground marjoram, salt and pepper, and mix throughly. Pour the mixture into the pan. Simmer for for five minutes then add the green onions. Allow to simmer for 10-25 minutes more, then serve with the Basmati rice and garnish with curly parsley. Makes seven servings.

Special thanks to Nate and Aldo for preparing the dish and to Bert for letting us use his kitchen. Thanks guys in ZAX!