Marie's Kitchen: Therapist at work, and the kitchen

Dana Kylen has been my massage/Reiki therapist for more than three years. She is a certified massage therapist, Reiki master teacher, raindrop technique practitioner, and clairvoyant spiritual guide. Her additional massage certifications include: Swedish/relaxation, hot stone, pregnancy, senior and massage for those with cancer or terminal illness. She does not do deep-tissue massage (which suits me just fine!).

Special to the Coastal Point • Marie Cook: Dana Kylen, is a massage and reiki therapist. She also provided this weeks recipes to Marie Cook. Here Kylen is pictured with her 15-year-old dog, Lillee.Special to the Coastal Point • Marie Cook: Dana Kylen, is a massage and reiki therapist. She also provided this weeks recipes to Marie Cook. Here Kylen is pictured with her 15-year-old dog, Lillee.According to Dana, “Therapeutic massage involves the manipulation of the soft-tissue structures of the body to prevent pain, discomfort, muscle spasm and stress, along with promoting health and wellness. Massage, once considered an indulgence, is now viewed as a healthy routine, providing benefits both physically and emotionally.”

Some people avoid massages because they don’t like to be touched. That’s one of the reasons that Dana studied Reiki and became certified to be a Reiki master teacher. Reiki is non-invasive — a type of energy work that helps to balance and strengthen the receivers’ energy, aiding in promoting the body’s natural ability to heal itself by replacing negative energy with positive healing energy.

“It is a gentle energy,” said Dana, “and may be safely used by all ages, including babies, pregnant mothers, surgical patients, and the frail and the elderly, regardless of their state of health.”

Dana also teaches Reiki Levels I, II and III. Classes can be arranged for groups of up to six people, but she also offers classes on a one-to-one basis. To schedule massages, Reiki treatments, classes, or to get more information for treatments available for your particular health issues, call Dana at (302) 539-8199.

I visit Dana on a weekly basis for different types of massage, as well as Reiki treatments for a couple of ongoing health issues. She has been a tremendous help to me since the first day I met her. Her positive attitude and gentle and loving spirit uplift me as much as her treatments do.

One of my favorite treatments is her raindrop technique, where she applies seven to nine essential oils on the spine, using a feathering motion, as did the Lakota Indians.

“This technique is a powerful, non-invasive, non-manipulative process that can help improve your mobility, your health and your vitality,” she said. “It is a tremendous boost to your immune system, and it releases toxins and kills viruses and bacteria that have accumulated along the spine.” (I love the smell of the oils and always look forward to this delightful technique!)

About nine years ago, Dana became aware of her intuitive, clairvoyant abilities and took numerous courses on spiritual connection.

“It is always a blessing and a privilege to be the messenger offering guidance from angels and spirit guides,” Dana said. (I can attest to Dana’s gifts, because I have received many blessings through her.)

During that time period, when Dana lived in Pennsylvania, she volunteered her services to the American Cancer Society. She provided complimentary massages to the employees at the Hershey center, as well as to many who stayed at the Hershey Ronald McDonald House. She also provided seated chair massage at numerous fundraising events.

Along with massage and Reiki, Dana now offers spiritual readings and has hosted several weekend workshops on angel communication and angel-chakra connections (chakras are the body’s energy centers).

“My dear friend, teacher and mentor, Candy Danzis, internationally known as ‘The Mainstream Mystic,’ led the workshops,” said Dana. “Feedback was very positive on how informative and fun the workshops were.”

I attended the workshops and can tell you that the positive energy in the room was palpable. I’m looking forward to Candy’s next workshop, Angel Alignment, which will be held the weekend of Sept. 21-22, teaching us how to tap into our intuitiveness and connect with our angels or spirit guides. Again, if you’re interested in attending, contact Dana at (302) 539-8199 or visit Candy’s website at

As you can see in the photo, Dana’s constant companion and confidante is her bichon frisé, Lillee.

“Her registered name is Easter Lillee Angel,” said Dana, “and she truly is an angel.”

When Dana went to pick out her puppy, several were jumping all over her, but she was drawn to Lillee, who was withdrawn and stayed off to the side.

“From that first day, she has had her place in the bed and in my heart.”

As it turned out, Lillee had a severe respiratory ailment and, if Dana had not brought her home, the vet said that the puppy might not have survived. Lillee is now more than 15 years old. She has congestive heart failure, she’s blind in her left eye, and she’s almost deaf. But Dana says that her “sniffer” works very well. “She can sniff out a potato chip from two rooms away!”

Since Dana began working out of her home, Lillee (with the permission of all of us who come to Dana for treatment), rests quietly underneath the massage table during a treatment, offering her own calming, loving energy to the session.

Dana’s hobbies include making prayer shawls, hats and scarves with a loom and a renewed interest in bike riding, especially with her teenage grandson, Max. And shopping! Dana is a top-notch shopper! She not only works from her home, she also loves spending time there sitting on her screened-in sun porch, enjoying the hummingbirds.

“I could spend hours just watching the hummingbirds,” she said.

Dana’s family includes a daughter, a son, seven grandsons, one great-grandson, one great-granddaughter and one more great-grand-something on the way. She also has three grand-pups. Everyone lives in Pennsylvania, but they visit often, expecting to be greeted with the aroma of a big batch of Dana’s homemade barbecue.

Dana prepares her Crustless Crab Quiche in a glass Pyrex 7.5-inch pie plate. I don’t own a 7.5-inch, so I’d have to make it in an 8-inch something or other. When I do that, I’ll have to remember that it will cook faster and will spread out a bit more. Dana made this for me and served it with a fresh green salad topped with goat cheese, fresh raspberries and her homemade Raspberry Cream Dressing (recipes follows) which is delicious!

Crustless Crab Quiche

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.


4 eggs, lightly beaten

? 3 fresh asparagus spears, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

? 1/2 cup lump crabmeat

? 1/4 cup shredded Swiss cheese

? 1/4 cup 4-percent cottage cheese

? 2 tablespoons chopped onion

? 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

Method for Crustless Crab Quiche:

Combine all ingredients. Pour into a 7.5-inch pie pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes. Yield: 4 servings.

Dana couldn’t find the brand of raspberry vinegar she used to use for her Raspberry Cream Dressing, so she purchased Bellino Raspberry Wine Vinegar at Harris Teeter. Today, I found the same brand of vinegar at Giant. A simple salad, as described above, of greens, goat cheese (or your favorite cheese), fresh raspberries and this dressing is guest-worthy. This recipe was given to her by the proprietor of a lovely little tea room in Pennsylvania.

Raspberry Cream Dressing


? 3/4 cup granulated sugar

? 1/4 cup raspberry vinegar

? 1 cup heavy whipping cream

Method for Raspberry Cream Dressing:

Whisk together sugar and vinegar. Add cream and mix well. Pour over greens. Refrigerate leftover dressing. Yield: About 1-1/2 cups dressing.

Dana tweaked her mother’s recipe for barbecue to come up with one of her family’s favorites. She usually doubles the recipe to serve when the gang’s all here. The barbecue can be made with ground beef or turkey, but since Dana stopped eating red meat about 20 years ago, she always uses turkey.

Dana’s Turkey or Ground Beef Barbecue


? Chopped onion to taste

? 1 pound ground turkey or ground beef

? 2 tablespoons cider vinegar

? 1/2 cup ketchup

? 1/2 cup water

? 1/4 teaspoon chili powder

? 1/4 teaspoon paprika

? 2 teaspoons granulated sugar

? 1 tablespoon yellow mustard

? 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

? 1/4 teaspoon salt

Method for Turkey or Ground Beef Barbecue:

Put a little water into the bottom of a skillet and add the onion and turkey or ground beef; brown; drain. Mix the rest of the ingredients and pour into the pan. Simmer for 20 minutes. Yield: At least 4-6 sandwiches.

Chocolate Whoopie Pies are coming back into favor, but Vanilla Whoopies are new to me. Dana found her recipe in a food column about 20 years ago and prefers vanilla to chocolate.

Vanilla Whoopie Pies

Preheat oven to 350-375 degrees F.


? 2 cups granulated sugar

? 1 cup shortening

? 3 eggs

? 2 teaspoons baking soda

? 1 teaspoon cider vinegar

? 1/4 cup canned, sweetened condensed milk (not evaporated milk)

? 1 cup buttermilk

? 4 cups all-purpose flour

? 3 teaspoons baking powder

? 1 teaspoon cream of tartar

? 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Method for Vanilla Whoopie Pies:

Cream sugar, shortening and eggs. Combine the baking soda and vinegar with the condensed milk. Add that milk combination and the buttermilk alternately with flour, baking powder, cream of tartar and vanilla, to the creamed mixture.

Drop by spoonfuls on greased cookie sheets. Bake at 350 to 375 degrees for about 15 minutes, or until cookies spring back when touched lightly with your index finger. Let cookies cool before filling. Yield: Approximately 1-1/2 dozen.

Filling for Whoopie Pies:

? 2 egg whites, beaten thoroughly

? 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

? 4 teaspoons all-purpose flour

? 4 cups 10X confectioners’ sugar

? 4 tablespoons milk

? 1 cup Crisco (solid)

? Pinch of salt

Method for Filling for Whoopie Pies:

To the beaten egg whites, add the vanilla and beat a bit more. Mix the flour, confectioners’ sugar, milk, Crisco and salt, and add this all at once to the egg/vanilla mixture. Beat until fluffy. Top one cookie with filling and then top with another cookie, pressing lightly.

Since Dana knows that I’m allergic to chicken, she made her Chicken Normandy recipe with ground turkey for my husband, Jim, and me. This makes a large casserole, so it will be perfect for a weekend meal with leftovers for lunches or another weeknight dinner. I may change up the soup to cream of mushroom or cream of celery, instead of cream of chicken, when I make this dish.

Chicken or Turkey Normandy

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.


? 2 tablespoons butter, divided

? 3 cups peeled, thinly sliced, sweet apples such as Fuji or Gala (about 3 apples)

? 1 pound ground chicken or turkey

? 1/4 cup apple brandy or apple juice

? 1 can (10-3/4 ounces) cream of chicken soup

? 1/4 cup finely chopped green onions

? 2 teaspoons fresh minced sage or 1/2 teaspoon dried sage leaves

? 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

? 1 package (12 ounces) egg noodles, cooked and drained according to package directions

Method for Chicken or Turkey Normandy:

Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a 12-inch nonstick skillet. Add apple slices; cook and stir over medium heat for 7 to 10 minutes, or until tender. Remove apples from skillet.

Add the ground chicken or turkey to the same skillet; cook and stir over medium heat until browned; drain. Return chicken or turkey to skillet and stir in apple brandy or apple juice and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in soup, onions, sage, pepper and the apple slices. Simmer for 5 minutes.

Toss the cooked noodles with the remaining butter and spoon into a well-greased, deep 9-by-13-by-2-inch casserole. Top with the chicken or turkey mixture. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 15 minutes, or until hot. Yield: 8 to 10 servings.

One of Dana’s Pennsylvania clients was a personal chef who shared her recipe for Cheesecake Bars.

Cheesecake Bars

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.


? 2 packages crescent rolls

? 2 bars (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened

? 1 egg yolk (reserve the white)

? 1 tablespoon lemon juice

? 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

? 3/4 cup granulated sugar

? 1/2 cup cinnamon-sugar

Method for Cheesecake Bars:

Spread 1 package of crescent rolls in the bottom of a 13-by-9-by-2-inch cake pan; pat together into one large piece. Beat the cream cheese egg yolk, lemon juice, vanilla, and 3/4 cup granulated sugar; spread over the crescent rolls.

Place the second package of crescent rolls over the top of the cream-cheese mixture. Brush with reserved egg white. (Dana does not beat the egg white.) Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar mixture. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. Cool, then cut into squares. Yield: Approximately 12 bars, depending on how you cut them.

At an angel workshop held at Dana’s home, guests enjoyed her Mounds Brownie Cake, a recipe she found many years ago in a newspaper article — happy smiles all around as we enjoyed slices of this rich, chocolaty cake. Topping with chopped Mounds candy bars is an option, but since Mounds is my all-time favorite candy bar, I can’t imagine not using them to top this cake!

Dana claims that she uses 21-ounce packages of dark chocolate brownie mix. I checked store shelves and saw boxes ranging from 18 to-19-1/2 ounces, so if those are your only options, go for the larger boxes.

Mounds Brownie Cake

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Ingredients for Cake:

? 2 packages (21-ounces each) dark chocolate brownie mix

? 1 cup mini chocolate chips, divided

Method for Mounds Brownie Cake:

Coat two 9-inch round baking pans with cooking spray. In a large bowl, prepare brownie mixes together according to package directions for cake-like brownies. Stir in 1/2 cup chocolate chips. Divide the batter between the two baking pans.

Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into centers comes out with moist crumbs clinging. Remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans; cool completely.

Ingredients for Filling:

? 1/2 cup butter

? 2 cups 10x confectioners’ sugar

? 1 tablespoon milk

? 1/2 teaspoon coconut extract

? 1 cup sweetened, flaked coconut

? 2 cans (16 ounces each) dark chocolate frosting

? Mounds candy bars, chopped (optional)

Method for Filling:

At medium speed on an electric mixer, beat butter until fluffy. Gradually beat in sugar, milk, and extract. Stir in the coconut and remaining 1/2 cup chocolate chips.

Place one cake layer on a serving plate; spread with all of coconut mixture. Top with remaining cake layer; spread frosting over the cake and top with chopped up Mounds candy bars, if desired. Yield: 20 servings.

I couldn’t find medium-sized cans of pineapple tidbits to make Dana’s Pineapple Casserole, so I used one 20-ounce can, drained. Dana is not a red-meat eater, but I will serve this as a side dish with ham or pork.

Pineapple Casserole

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.


? 2 medium-size cans pineapple tidbits, drained

? 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour

? 3/4 cup granulated sugar

? 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

? 1 sleeve Ritz crackers, crushed

? 1 stick butter or margarine

Method for Pineapple Casserole:

Grease a 9-inch baking dish. Place drained pineapple into the dish. Mix together the flour, sugar and grated cheese, and sprinkle on top of the pineapple. Melt butter or margarine and mix it with the crushed Ritz crackers. Sprinkle this on top of the ingredients in the baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Yield: 6 to 8 servings.

Editor’s note: If you have recipes to share, or recipes you want, contact Marie Cook, Coastal Point, P.O. Box 1324, Ocean View, DE 19970; or by email at Please include your phone number. Recipes in this column are not tested by the Coastal Point.)