Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Dinner’ Category

I made this recipe for the first time during a recent Mom’s/Ladies Wine Evening at my place.  Our wine theme for this event was California and so I went with a healthy, bite sized salad.  I’ve been to California many times and it is many things to me (special memories) so I also decided to make some Pico De Gallo & Guacamole to represent all the incredible Mexican food I’ve tasted in Southern California. 

The ladies loved this Lentil Salad and so I’m sharing the recipe.

Note I served this salad in shot glasses. Quite often I serve mini salad or pureed soups in shot glasses when having people over for dinner.  It’s simple and it’s Fun.

Adapted from Canadian Living

Feta & Lentil Salad

1/4 cup slivered, toasted almonds
1 cup dried green lentils
3 cloves garlic, peeled
1/3 cup olive oil
3 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tbsp (or more) fresh oregano, finely chopped
salt & pepper to taste (1/4 tsp each)
1 cup cucumber, diced
1/2 cup roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
1/2 cup red onion, diced
2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
1/3 cup feta cheese, crumbled

Toast your almonds in a pan over medium heat watching and stirring often until they start to brown. Set aside to cool.

Bring large pot of water to a boil.  Add whole garlic cloves and lentils.  Reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes.  Drain and rinse with cold water.  Remove garlic cloves and continue to allow lentils to drain in colander.

Whisk together oil, red wine vinegar, oregano, salt and pepper.  Add lentils, feta, cucumber, onion, parsley and tomatoes stirring to combine.  When ready to serve sprinkle with toasted almonds.

Read Full Post »

This is one of those recipes I’ve gone past several times…always drawn to the quantity of fresh herbs used.  Rummaging through my fridge recently I discovered I had all the herbs required to make that “Thai Chicken” recipe.  Fortunately I also had some green curry paste and was inspired to add some more flavour to the dish.

Happy to report this recipe got 4 thumbs up…the family loved it.  The kidlets did not complain about the herbs at all even commenting on how much they enjoyed it.  Fresh Tasting & Flavourful.

For this recipe I pulled out of the freezer both bone-in chicken thighs and boneless chicken breasts as they needed to be used up.  I threw them all into the marinade noting the different cooking times for the chicken.  Each morsel tasted equally divine.

Adapted from ATCO Blue Flame

Thai Inspired Chicken

1/4 – 1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped fine
1/4 – 1/2 cup fresh mint, chopped fine
1/4 – 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped fine
2 tbsp grated fresh ginger
2 tbsp soy sauce
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp green curry paste
1/4 cup oil (canola or olive)
splash of your favourite hot pepper sauce
4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts OR bone in, skin on chicken thighs

Combine all ingredients except chicken in ziplock bag. Squishy it to mix flavours. If you find it a little on the dry side add some more oil. Add chicken, squeezing to ensure marinade permeates chicken.

Let stand 30 minutes at room temp or longer in fridge to develop flavours. Remove chicken from marinade and discard.

For boneless chicken breasts grill over medium heat approx 12-15 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.

For bone-in chicken thighs grill over medium low heat for approximately 20-25 minutes or until cooked through.

Read Full Post »

One of my girlfriend’s came to visit me last weekend.  She lives in Northern BC and we’ve been friends for over 25 years.

I asked her what she wanted for supper on her first night here and to make a long story short we ended up having grilled steak.  No shortage of steak lovers in this family.  I grew up having steak occasionally, although it would always be the same cut of steak with the same BBQ sauce cooked the same way. I swear this is part of the reason I scream for flavour and diversity in my cooking.

Chimichurri sauce originates from Argentina & South America. It is a lovely & tasty accompaniment to any grilled meat. We’ve enjoyed this recipe before and so it was time to enjoy it again.

We grilled some asparagus & mushrooms as a side.

Adapted from ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen

Steak with Chimichurri Sauce

2 tbsp oil
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp coriander
2 lbs steak (whatever you enjoy, striploin, sirloin, filet, etc.)
salt & pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a plastic ziplock back and squishy to ensure steak is covered. Let marinate on counter for 30 minutes or longer in the fridge.

Remove steak from bag and grill over medium heat to preferred doneness. Serve with Chimichurri sauce.

Chimichurri Sauce
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves
2 tbsp lemon juice, fresh
2 tbsp fresh oregano
5 cloves garlic, peeled
1/2 tsp each salt & pepper

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Serve immediately.

Read Full Post »

So impressed was I that hubby really enjoyed this salad. So much so he took it for lunch today.  Now if only I could get the kidlets to enjoy quinoa since it is a complete protein and good for you.   Here’s hoping one day!

This is a quick-lunch, side dish or even meal for one. Add some roasted/grilled chicken  if you wish or it as is. Yum.

Quinoa, Cucumber & Mint Salad

1 cup quinoa
1 cup water
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1-2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup cucumber, quartered and sliced
3-4 green onions, sliced
1/3 cup packed fresh parsley, chopped
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, chopped
salt & pepper to taste

Add water, quinoa and salt to pot, bring to a boil. Reduce, cover and simmer until water has been absorbed and quinoa tender (about 12-15 minutes). Scoop into a bowl and set aside to cool.

In a cup, or small bowl whisk together vinegar, oil, salt and pepper. Pour it on quinoa and add cucumber, green onions, parsley & mint.  Mix well.  Adjust seasonings as needed.  Pairs nicely with grilled meat.

Read Full Post »

I’ve tried many different versions of chicken fajita’s and always found the flavours are rather bland.  This recipe had the flavours blending nicely and everyone loving this dish.  In fact my dd asked for it for lunch the next day at school (now that is unusual).

Fajita’s for our family are a quick & easy supper on an activity night.  These are truly yummy.

Chicken Fajitas

4 chicken breasts, boneless & skinless
1 tbsp chili powder
2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp cumin
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp lime juice, fresh
oil (canola or olive oil)
1/2 cup spanish onion, sliced
1 cup pepper (red, green, orange, yellow), sliced
whole wheat flour tortillas 

Fixins
shredded lettuce
diced tomato
salsa
guacamole
sour cream
hot peppers (banana or jalapeno)
shredded cheese
I also used pico de gallo & chopped cilantro

In a ziplock bag combine chili powder, oregano, salt, cumin, garlic, lime juice and a little oil.  Seal bag and smoosh to combine flavours. Add your chicken and smoosh a little more.  Refrigerate for a minimum 15 minutes or longer if you have time.

Put your onions and peppers in a bowl.  Pour on a little oil and season with salt, pepper and a little cumin.

Take chicken out of marinade and drain.  Put on greased BBQ and grill approximately 6-7  minutes per side on med-high until cooked through and juices run clear.  Remove from heat and let rest under cover.

Meanwhile on a pre heated BBQ grill topper or stove top grill pan add some oil and your onion/pepper mix.  Give it a little more s&p and saute for about 4-5 minutes or under veggies tender crisp. Set aside in a bowl.

Get all your fixin’s ready, heat up your flour tortillas (10 seconds in microwave), slice your chicken, grab some peppers/onions and you are ready to assemble your chicken fajita.

My family loves them!

Read Full Post »

With activities taking up several evenings during the week I am always on the look out for a quick, affordable and nutritious meal.  Pork Chops can be fried, grilled or broiled quickly and a lean protein our family enjoys.

Adapted from Atco Blue Flame

Maple Soy Pork Chops

2 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp oil
1-2 tsp ginger, freshly grated
3 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
3 cloves garlic, crushed
4 boneless pork chops

Add all ingredients except pork chops into a ziplock style bag. Mush it up to combine. Add your pork chops, seal bag and squishy bag to ensure chops are coated evenly.

Marinate for a minimum 30 minutes. Longer is better.

Remove pork chops from bag and grill over low heat on BBQ until done, about 30 minutes for thicker chops.

In the photo I paired my pork chop with balsamic & basil grilled veggies. Will post that recipe soon.

Read Full Post »


Third times a charm?  Good thing I’ve had 5 workouts in 4 days to make myself feel better about these pizza experiments.  This will be the last pizza submission for this week as I am getting pizza’d out.  However having said that I have at least 4 more ideas spinning through my head for pizzas based on leftovers.

Leftover taco meat can be used many ways.  On a pizza for a quick lunch or supper is a quick meal for a busy family.  I love hot peppers and used pickled jalapeno’s in this recipe.  I also used regular peppers (orange, yellow & green) both sliced and diced. 

Options are endless.  What I enjoy on a taco or taco salad is what I put on this pizza.  I did not use exact quantities below as some people may prefer more of a topping, others less.  You decide.

 

Taco & Pepper Pita Pizza


1/4-1/2 cup taco meat
1/4 cup peppers (cut into rings, or diced)
1-2 tbsp salsa (or taco sauce)
1 tbsp pickled jalapeno peppers (or banana peppers)
1/4 cup diced tomatoes
1/2-1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese or monterey jack
1/2 cup sliced lettuce (romaine)

Spread salsa on your pita with a spoon, knife or pastry brush.

Next layer on your peppers, tomatoes and taco meat. Finally spread your cheese all over.  I admittedly added a light dusting of shredded parmesan on top.

Broil in oven for about 2-3 minutes or until cheese melted and bubbling. I bake mine on a pizza stone but a cookie sheet or pizza pan works just as well.

Remove from oven, let sit for a few minutes before slicing. I sprinkled fresh lettuce on top.  Outstanding.

Read Full Post »


I thought yesterday’s pizza creation was pretty tasty and since today is pizza day for lunch, the inspiration carried over and I wanted to create another yummy pizza.

I always use pita pockets to make pizzas for lunch for the kids.  They are the perfect size for little hands/people and hold the ingredients well.   Looking around my kitchen for inspiration I discovered some uncooked squash that needed to be used up.  Not enough time to grill it, I steamed it instead.  Being a lover of all things squash but never having had it on pizza I was up for the challenge.  I looked through the fridge and fished out some basil and goat cheese.  A new recipe was born.

Note: If you like goat cheese but do not care for a lot of pepper buy a plain or perhaps herb goat cheese and omit the additional cracked pepper I added at the end.

I can honestly say I had a Clinton Kelly moment when I took my first bite.  (If you ever watch The Chew….love that show…whenever Clinton tastes something he adores he becomes incoherent).  Yes I felt that way, this pizza rocked my socks off.  Trying to figure out what to call this pizza was my biggest challenge. 

If you are up for a new pizza and like the ingredients…try it, you will not be disappointed.  I didn’t calore count this one but I’m pretty sure since there are fewer ingredients it is well under 500 calories.

Squash & Goat Cheese Pita Pizza

1 Byblos Garlic Greek Pita Pocket
1-2 tbsp Soft Unripened Peppercorn Goat Cheese, broken up
Olive Oil
2-3 sprigs Fresh Basil, chiffonade
1/2 cup cooked butternut squash (grill or steam), chopped into smaller pieces
1-2 tbsp Asiago Cheese, shredded
Cracked Black Pepper

Drizzle a little olive oil onto your pita. Spread with a pastry brush.

Next add your cut, cooked butternut squash and your goat cheese. Sprinkle on your basil and some Asiago cheese.

Broil on pizza stone for 2-3 minutes or until Asiago cheese melts a little and edges of pita brown. Remove from oven and let sit a few minutes.  If you do not have a pizza stone a pizza pan or cookie sheet works just as well.

Just before serving (to myself) I added additional Asiago & basil on top and some fresh cracked black pepper.

For me this taste combination was a winner…one the next time the family wants pizza for supper…I will happily oblige.

Read Full Post »

Everyone in our house loves pizza.  But our pizza likes are as individual as our personalities.  Hubs is meat & mushrooms and doesn’t stray far from it.  Kids vary between ham/pineapple, pepperoni with a few veggies or olives thrown on depending on their mood & the alignment of the sun, moon & the stars.  Me I prefer mostly veggie style pizzas with a variety of ingredients including chicken.  I also love to experiment and try new variations. So we tend to make pizza more often than we order them in as this enables us to make our pizzas to our individual tastes. 

With pizza on the lunch agenda this week I decided to jump the gun after trying some delicious Tandoori Naan Bread last night and have pizza for lunch today.   Inspiration Struck.  The Tandoori Naan bread has Tandoori (curry) spices in the bread and it is seriously delicious.

I calorie counted this more for curiousity sake, not because I am calore counting.  It comes in under 500 calories for the entire pizza….if you can finish it that is.

For those wondering about the Naan bread, here in Calgary I purchased it at the Co-op Grocery Store.  Remember when you make pizzas you do not have to use just pizza sauce…instead try tomato, BBQ, pesto…..experimentation is the name of the game.

Tandoori Chicken Naan Pizza

1 piece Tandoori Naan bread
1 tbsp mango chutney
1/4-1/2 cup leftover roast chicken, shredded or cut up
1/3 cup grated pizza cheese or straight mozzarella
1/4 of a pepper (yellow, red, orange), sliced or diced
Handful of cilantro, torn

Spread your mango chutney all over your naan bread. If you need more use more but your calorie count goes up 40 calories per tbsp of mango chutney used.

Next layer on your chicken and peppers. You can sprinkle on some cilantro and then add your cheese.

Broil in oven for about 2-3 minutes or until cheese melted and bubbling. I bake mine on a pizza stone but a cookie sheet or pizza pan works just as well.

Remove from oven, let sit for a few minutes before slicing.  Since I love cilantro I add fresh on top. If you do not like cilantro, flat leaf parsley will work too.

Hmmm…next time I may sprinkle on some spanish/purple onions.

Simply delicious!

Read Full Post »

Another recipe on the radar for awhile…..I love anything with coconut.  I finally pulled the chicken out of the freezer and got them into the marinade.  Then after a long day and with an activity night ahead of us, I decided against grilling the chicken and opted for quick sandwiches instead.  It was just one of those days.

The chicken ended up getting grilled the next night and as such marinating for 24 hours.  Uh, yum.  The coconut did it’s job and the chicken was delicious but did not have an overpowering coconut flavour.

Adapted from ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen

Coconut Chicken Thighs

1 cup canned coconut milk, stir well
1-2 tbsp fresh lime juice
2 tsp lime peel, grated
1 tbsp fish sauce
2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1 clove garlic
10 bone-in, skin on chicken thighs

Combine all ingredients in ziplock bag, except chicken. Swishy the bag to incorporate and mix up ingredients. Remove 1/2 cup of the marinade, cover and refrigerate.

Add chicken to the bag, close bag and move around to marry it with the marinade. Marinate for a minimum 30 minutes up to several hours if you have the time.

When ready to grill remove chicken from the marinade. Grill over medium heat for approximate 15 – 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Keep an eye on them as flare ups may occur and the skin will get quite charred.

Serve with reserved marinade and coconut rice.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.