Meals and Gardening

Food and fellowship are central to our way of life. We tend to each other through conversation and God’s creation, from the food we grow to other sustainable practices.



Normally guests on retreat will prepare their own meals and eat in their cabins. Groups and other visitors are invited to eat the evening meal in the House of Peace, relishing time in community as supper is prepared each day (times vary, so please ask). Oftentimes guests participate in the preparation of the meal and everyone helps with cleanup afterwards. Any participation in our life continues to build the experience of family.

If you are with us in the morning or afternoon, you are welcome at the House of Peace at any time to help yourself to breakfast and lunch.

You can discuss your needs with us (such as asking about foods if you have an allergy) and we will make arrangements accordingly or offer an alternative.



Following our 11 a.m. Mass on Sundays, we invite you to join us for brunch. Because brunch is served buffet-style, there are some new health safety procedures in place such as hand sanitizing and using a new plate if going up for seconds. Please bring a dish-to-pass just large enough for yourself and two other people as we cannot keep leftover buffet food. Other gatherings may also ask for a dish-to-pass – please check our calendar.



We have some “famous” recipes at the Mountain!


Creamed Onions

Fr. Dan Riley, ofm, and his sister, Ellen Riley Kruse, share the family recipe that has become a Mountain favorite.

  • 4 Tbsp butter
  • 5 Tbsp flour
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 ½ cups freshly grated sharp cheddar (you may want more)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg  (to taste)
  • 50 (approx.) medium-sized boiling onions (NOT pearl onions)


First, peel all the onions.

Butter a big enough casserole dish to hold them all with sauce.

Melt butter slowly in heavy saucepan. Add flour slowly and mix to make a roux. Whisk in the half-and-half. Let this cook slowly and whisk frequently until it gets to a white sauce consistency (not real thick because you’ll be adding cheese). Stir in salt, pepper and nutmeg, and turn off heat.

Bring a large pot of water to boiling. Add onions. Cook until they have some give but are not real tender. Drain. Put into buttered casserole dish.

Heat up the white sauce. Add cheddar (more if you want it real cheesy). Whisk while the sauce thickens until really creamy. Taste for salt, pepper and nutmeg. You may also add a little pre-grated Parmesan, your choice.

Pour sauce over onions. Add breadcrumbs on top if you like.

Bake at 350 degrees until nice and bubbly on edges, at least 45 minutes.

You may make the cheese sauce the day before and heat it slowly while prepping onions.


I join my sister, Ellen, one of the great cooks of the world in our family, in saying….enjoy!
Mountain Dip
Br. Kevin Kriso, ofm, shares the simple trick to making a student favorite at the Mountain. 

A few years ago I made the “old school” onion soup mix dip of my high school days. Many of the students went wild. A few even demanded the recipe, so here it is:

  • 1 16oz container of sour cream
  • 1 envelope of dry French Onion Soup Mix

Place both ingredients in a bowl and use a whisk to mix together thoroughly.

Let sit a few minutes and enjoy with chips or cut vegetables.

Steamed Sugar Snap Peas or Baby Bok Choi
Br. Kevin shares this recipe for a quick and tasty vegetable side dish. 

Clean the peas or Bok choy of any dirt or bruised areas.

Gently steam them in a pan until tender but not soft.

In the meantime, make a sauce of a few tablespoons of sesame oil, about half as much soy sauce, a small amount of brown sugar and about a half teaspoon of dry mustard. Whisk together and adjust to taste.

Remove the peas or Bok choy from the pan and place on a platter.

Pour the sauce over them just before serving.

Caramel Apples
Take some nice unblemished apples. Wash and drain them.

Cut out the cores and slice the apples (you might consider using one of those combination apple corer and slicer tools).

Place a handful of apple slices in cereal or salad bowls.

Pour some caramel syrup over the apple slices.
Cover with some whipped cream, add an optional tablespoon of granola and serve.


Our gardens celebrate the communion with creation and the joy of simple, manual labor. In relationship to our large House of Peace and other dwellings that recall both community and solitude, and stand in relationship to Holy Peace Chapel, it recalls for us that not only there, but throughout the Mountain and the Earth we commune with our God, giving thanks and praise through Jesus Christ for all that God has done for us.

RELATED: The Cycle of Gardening Seasons

We welcome people to help us tend our vibrant garden!


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Upcoming Events

  1. Mass at the Mountain – Every Sunday at 11 a.m.

    January 14, 2024 @ 11:00 am - October 19, 2025 @ 1:00 pm
  2. Wednesday Evenings of Re-Creation 2024 – July 3, 10, 17, 24, 31

    July 3 @ 6:00 pm - July 31 @ 10:00 pm

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