Coulee Region Cooks (131)

Join Mike Hayes each Thursday morning on WIZM for Coulee Region Cooks, the area's only live radio cooking show. Mike is joined by some of the best chefs and home cooks throughout the La Crosse area as they share their favorite recipes. Catch Coulee Region Cooks Thursday mornings at 10am on WIZM.

Wednesday - April 1, 2015 12:00 am

Balsamic Fish Tacos

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  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 4 Tilapia Fillets, cut into 1 inch pieces (you may substitute any other firm, white fish)
  • 2 Tablespoons Zatarains Creole Seasoning
  • ¼ teaspoon Kosher salt
  • ½ head red cabbage, coarsely chopped
  • 3 green onions, diced
  • ½ cup Marzetti Simply Dressed Balsamic Salad Dressing
  • 1 large tomato, seeded and diced
  • 2 cups Basil Asiago cheese
  • 6 small tortillas, warmed 


In a large skillet, heat olive oil and butter over medium heat, until butter is melted. Toss Tilapia fillet pieces with Creole seasoning. Add to the skillet and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Sprinkle with salt. While fish is cooking, toss chopped cabbage and onion with Marzetti Simply Dressed Balsamic Salad Dressing. Once combined, add to the skillet with the fish and continue stirring over medium heat until cabbage becomes tender and fish is completely cooked through (approximately 5 minutes). Remove from heat. Assemble the tortillas with shredded cheese, fish and cabbage mixture, and topped with diced tomatoes. Drizzle with additional Marzetti Simply Dressed Balsamic Salad Dressing, if desired.

Wednesday - April 1, 2015 12:00 am

Stuffed Cuban Pork Tenderloin

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  • 1 (1-pound) pork tenderloin, trimmed
  • 2 tablespoons whole-grain Dijon mustard
  • 3 thin slices Swiss cheese, halved
  • 1/3 cup chopped bread-and-butter pickles
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Cooking spray


Method: Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Cut a lengthwise slit down the center of the tenderloin two-thirds of the way through the meat. Open halves, laying tenderloin flat. Place tenderloin between 2 sheets of plastic wrap; pound to 1/2-inch thickness using a meat mallet or heavy skillet. Spread mustard evenly over pork and sprinkle with cilantro. Arrange cheese and pickles over pork in a single layer. Roll up, starting with long side; secure pork at 1-inch intervals with twine. Combine salt, pepper and oregano and sprinkle over pork. Place the pork on a grill rack coated with cooking spray. Grill 22 minutes or until a thermometer registers 155°, turning after 11 minutes. Remove from grill. Let stand covered for 5 minutes. Cut into 12 slices.  I like mine a little spicer, so I normally use Famous Daves Signature Spicy, but that's just me. Enjoy

Tuesday - June 9, 2015 12:00 am

Vegetable Whole Grain Skillet Lasagna Recipe

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(serves 4-6)


  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup chopped sweet onion
  • ½ green pepper, sliced thin
  • 1 large clove garlic, chopped
  • ½ yellow squash/zucchini, sliced lengthwise and on an angle, then cut in half
  • 4 oz baby bella mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 8 whole grain lasagna noodles, broken into 2-inch lengths
  • 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes and juice
  • 1.5 cups favorite spaghetti sauce
  • 1.5 cup water
  • Handful baby spinach
  • 1-1.5 cups of reduced fat ricotta
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, optional


1. Heat the oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and green pepper and cook until onion begins to brown, about 4-5 minutes. Stir in the garlic, zucchini and mushrooms and cook, stirring constantly for about 5 minutes. 2. Place the noodle pieces around the skillet and then cover with the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, water and top with the baby spinach. Bring the juices to a boil, cover and turn the heat to low and allow to simmer, stirring occasionally, until the lasagna is tender, about 20 minutes. 4. Remove the skillet from the heat, place spoonfuls of ricotta on top, scatter Parmesan and allow to sit for a few minutes. Serve warm.

Thursday - March 12, 2015 12:00 am

Bayou Gumbo

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  • 3 tbsp. Pillsbury Best All-Purpose Flour
  • 3 tbsp. oil
  • 1/2 lb. smoked sausage, cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • 2 cups frozen cut okra
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 large green bell pepper, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp. ground red pepper (cayenne)
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1 can (14.5 ounce) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 pkg. (12 ounce) frozen shelled deveined cooked medium shrimp, rinsed
  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked regular long-grain white rice
  • 3 cups water


In small saucepan, combine flour and oil; mix well. Cook, stirring constantly, over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium; cook, stirring constantly, about 10 minutes or until mixture turns reddish brown. Place flour-oil mixture in 3 1/2 to 4 quart slow cooker. Stir in all remaining ingredients except shrimp, rice and water. Cover; cook on low setting for 7-9 hours,. When ready to serve, cook rice in water as directed on package. Meanwhile, add shrimp to gumbo mixture in slow cooker; mix well. Cover; cook on low setting for additional 20 minutes. Serve gumbo over rice. Makes 6 servings

Thursday - March 5, 2015 12:00 am

Beef Fajitas

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  • 11/2 lbs. beef flank steak
  • 1 lg. onion, chopped (1 cup)
  • 1 med. green sweet pepper, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 or 2 jalapeño peppers, chopped
  • 1 tbsp. snipped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1 tsp. bottled minced garlic
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 can stewed tomatoes (8 oz.)
  • 12 flour tortillas (7-onch.)
  • 2 tsp. lime juice (up to 3 tsp.) (optional)
  • Shredded colby and Monterey Jack cheese (optional)
  • Guacamole (optional)
  • Sour Cream (optional)
  • Salsa (optional)

1. Trim fat from steak. Cut steak into 6 portions. Combine steak, onion, green sweet pepper, jalapeño peppers, cilantro, chili powder, cumin, coriander, garlic, and salt in Crockery Pot. Add undrained tomatoes. 2. Cover; cook on low for 8 to 10 hours. (Or cook on high for 4 to 5 hours.) 3. Set oven to 350°. To heat tortillas, wrap them in foil and bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until softened. remove steak from cooker and shred. return steak to cooker. stir in lime juice, if desired. 4. To serve, use a slotted spoon to spoon steak mixture onto warm tortillas. Top with cheese, guacamole, sour cream, and salsa, if desired. Roll up tortillas. Makes 6 servings.

Thursday - March 5, 2015 12:00 am

Three Sisters Stew

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  • 1 pound trimmed pork loin, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Kosher salt, as needed
  • Black pepper, as needed
  • 2 tablespoons neutral oil, such as canola
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 cups turkey or chicken stock, preferably homemade or low-sodium
  • 1 medium yellow squash, diced
  • 1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, drained
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained
  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can chopped tomatoes
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels
  • 1 (4-ounce) can roasted green chilies (1/2 cup)
  • ½ bunch fresh cilantro, roughly chopped


Season pork with cumin, salt and pepper. Heat oil in a Dutch oven or large heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Add pork, in batches if necessary, and cook, turning as needed, until lightly browned on all sides, 5 to 6 minutes. Transfer pork to a bowl and set aside. Add onion to pan and sauté, stirring occasionally, until translucent, 5 to 7 minutes. Add garlic and sauté, stirring occasionally, until lightly colored, 2 to 3 minutes. Return pork to pan, along with stock and squash, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, covered, for about 30 minutes. Add beans, tomatoes, corn and chilies and cook, uncovered, over medium heat until stew has thickened, about 40 minutes. Add cilantro and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Thursday - March 5, 2015 12:00 am

Chicken & Sausage Ragu

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  • 1-pound rigatoni
  • 1-pound Italian sausage cut in 1-inch chunks
  • 1-pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 cup diced onions
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp minced fresh garlic
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • ½ tsp red pepper flakes
  • ½ cup dry red wine
  • 1-14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 2 oz. mascarpone or cream cheese
  • parmesan cheese for garnish


Cook rigatoni according to package directions. Drain. Sauté sausage, chicken and onions in oil over medium high heat until browned (5-7 minutes). Add garlic, tomato paste, fennel seeds and pepper flakes. Cook until fragrant (2-3 minutes). Add wine, tomatoes, broth, vinegar and bay leaf. Bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until sauce is reduced (about 5 minutes). Stir in mascarpone until melted. Spoon ragu over pasta and garnish with parmesan cheese.

Thursday - March 5, 2015 12:00 am

Pork Pad Thai

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  • 8 oz dry rice noodles
  • 1/3 cup each low sodium chicken broth, rice vinegar & ketchup
  • 3 Tbsp sherry
  • 2 tsp each brown sugar, fish sauce and chili garlic sauce
  • 1 Tbsp canola oil
  • 1 pound boneless pork, thinly sliced
  • 2 Tbsp each minced fresh garlic and minced fresh ginger
  • 1 ½ cup thinly sliced carrot strips
  • ½ cup diced & seeded tomato
  • 2 cans bamboo shoots


  • ½ cup chopped dry roasted peanuts
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro


Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain, rinse & set aside. Whisk together broth, vinegar, ketchup, sherry, brown sugar, fish sauce and chili garlic sauce in a large bowl. Add sliced pork and marinate for 10 minutes, Drain pork & reserve marinade. Heat oil in a wok or large frying pan over medium heat. Add drained pork and stir fry until cooked through. Transfer to a plate. Add ginger and garlic to the wok and stir fry 1 minute. Add carrots and stir fry 2 minutes. Stir in noodles, pork, reserved marinade, tomato & bamboo shoots. Stir fry 2-3 minutes. Garnish with peanuts and cilantro.

Thursday - March 5, 2015 12:00 am

Meatloaf Muffins with Tomato Gravy

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  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 1/3 cup prepared yellow mustard
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • Meatloaf
  • ¾ cup skim/fat free milk
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ¾ cup plain bread crumbs
  • 2 pounds lean ground beef
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • ½ cup diced & seeded fresh tomato
  • 1 Tbsp worchestershire sauce
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper

Tomato Gravy

  • 1 cup diced onions
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1-14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup low sodium beef broth
  • ¼ cup ketchup
  • 2 Tbsp prepared yellow mustard
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil. For topping, combine all ingredients and set aside. To make meatloaf, Mix together all ingredients with your hands until well blended. Using a ½ cup measure, portion mixture into a 12 cup muffin tin. Brush top of each meatloaf muffin with topping. Place muffin tin on prepared baking sheet and bake muffins until cooked through…25-30 minutes. As muffins cook, make tomato gravy. Saute 1 cup onions in olive oil over high heat until softened (about 3 minutes). Add canned tomatoes, and remaining tomato gravy ingredients. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium low and simmer 10-15 minutes. Serve muffins topped with tomato gravy. Excellent with mashed potatoes!

Thursday - March 5, 2015 12:00 am

Meatball Vegetable Soup

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  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup thinly sliced carrots
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • ¾ cup diced green pepper
  •  1 cup sliced green beans
  • 1-15 oz can great northern beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1-14 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 quart chicken broth
  • 3 Tbsp long grain brown rice
  • 1 tsp basil 1 tsp oregano
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • meatballs
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • ½ cup bread crumbs
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • Grated parmesan cheese


Make meatballs by combining all meatball ingredients in a bowl. Mix well and form into 1-inch balls. Place meatballs on a cookie sheet with low sides. Bake in 350 degree oven for 15 minutes. Remove from cookie sheet and drain if necessary on paper towels. Set aside. While meatballs cook, heat olive oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Add carrots, onion green pepper and green beans. Cook stirring occasionally until onion is softened (about 7 minutes). Add northern beans, tomatoes, broth, rice, oregano, basil, salt & pepper. Cover and bring to a boil, reduce heat & simmer 20 minutes. Add cooked meatballs to soup and simmer for 10 more minutes. Serve with grated parmesan cheese.

Coulee Region Cooks Podcasts

  • 04-14-2017 by Mike Hayes
    New Head Chef at Twisted Moose Tim Fuhrman shares favorite recipes, and a few tricks.
    Created on 2017-04-15 10:56:28
  • 04-06-2017 by Mike Hayes
    Jim Bressi Brought news from the Kwik Trip Dairy, Switzerland and a few fondue recipes too
    Created on 2017-04-07 15:53:58
  • 03-23-2017 by Mike Hayes
    Wendy Storandt from Storandt Farms shares some tasty salsa and jam recipes from her farm cookbook.
    Created on 2017-03-24 15:30:10
  • 02-23-2017 by Mike Hayes
    Tan Pham of Cuisine Adventure Tours takes us on a tasty trip through Vietnam.
    Created on 2017-03-01 16:27:11
  • 02-16-2017 by Mike Hayes
    Tina Gilbertson from The Dairy Council shares some of her favorites.
    Created on 2017-02-21 16:34:18