I don’t dine at Greek restaurants or try to make Greek-inspired dishes very often, so when I do, I really savor the chance and opportunity to do so. This recipe, Grilled Pitas with Feta, Red Onion, Olives & Tomatoes, looked liked a perfect dish with Greek flavors and I especially liked the fact that I would get a chance to utilize the outside grill yet again this week.
This is very simple to make. All it requires is a few minutes for prep/cutting, patience for the grill to heat up, and a penchant for feta cheese!
Step 1: Cut Tomatoes, Onions, Garlic and Olives
Step 2: Toss Prior Ingredients Together
with Olive Oil and Fresh Mint
Step 3: Brush Pitas with
Olive Oil and Grill
Step 4: Grill Pita and Add Tomato Mixture
Step 5: Cut and Eat!
I happen to like feta cheese, but I realize that not everyone does. I made this with my boyfriend and quickly learned he is definitely not a fan. It’s not fun when he won’t eat any, but at the same time, I get to have more. In these situations, I guess it’s a good thing because I get to have more… unless I just eat the whole thing. In that case, perhaps it’s not the best, but oh well!
Sometimes, it is just nice and convenient to be able to throw a quick appetizer together for a dinner party or get-together. This recipe was no different. Considering this recipe uses only five ingredients (not including salt & pepper) and creates one of my favorite ingredients (sun dried tomatoes minus the sun), I became absolutely smitten.
I made these as an appetizer this past Christmas for my family. My brother, who is quite a picky eater, does not usually appreciate my cooking and choices; however, this time, he actually really liked this appetizer. So, for your next get-together, make sure to make these (even the most picky eater will like them!): Crostini With Thyme-Roasted Tomatoes.
Step 1: Cut Tomatoes in Half Lengthwise
Step 2: Place Tomatoes on Pan With
Olive Oil, Thyme, Salt and Pepper; Roast
Step 3: Slice Bread and Bake in Oven
Step 4: Place Roasted Tomatoes
on Top of Bread and Eat!
If in a bind, this is perfect for a last-minute recipe since it uses normal household items. Plus, it results in a simple, yet delicious result!
Cooking with limes always reminds me of Summer barbecues and Mint Mojitos. I love the light and fruity flavors that result out of summer dishes because the Fall and Winter seasons definitely encompass more heavy and comfort-filled items. Despite the fact that the season of Summer has come and passed, I still enjoy cooking with limes year-round. So, I was ecstatic (and very thankful) when I found this recipe for Honey Lime Chicken from The Enchanted Cook. I had also recently been in the mood to grill so this recipe was absolutely perfect.
In addition to my penchant for limes, I love the fact that grilling (for the most part) can be quite easy and takes little time and effort. For this recipe, I just measured the dry ingredients, zested and juiced a lime and then combined all the ingredients into a Ziploc bag with the chicken to marinate. All this recipe took was less than five minutes of prep time before work and then it was ready to throw on the grill after coming home. All in all, this was a very flavorful recipe that tasted very light – exactly what I needed amidst all the heavy and calorie-laden options for Fall foods.
If you haven’t noticed already, I’m literally all about “ease, ease, ease” and “few ingredients, few ingredients, few ingredients”. Rarely a time exists where I cave and use a recipe that requires over 12 seperate ingredients. That being said, this Tuesday was no different. A friend from college came over to visit my roommate and I. I decided to make a simple dinner and one that would require few ingredients (of course!!).
I had already picked up a lemon at the store a few days prior and decided I wanted to incorporate it somehow. Since I already had pasta on hand, I figured I’d try to figure out some type of pasta-lemon duo. After some glancing around the cupboard, I decided to make Fresh Lemon Pasta as a nice, summery dish.
Step 1: Smash Garlic and Chop Finely
Step 2: Grate Parmesan; Juice and Zest Lemon
Step 3: Combine Zest, Juice, and Olive Oil
Step 4: Combine Cheese, Cooked Noodles, Sauteed
Garlic, and Olive Oil/Lemon Sauce Together; Enjoy!
Although it almost seems too simple, my tastebuds were not disappointed and my wallet was sure happy with me too. As cheesy as that sounds, it is completely true! Anyway, the key to this recipe’s success is lots of garlic (lots!) and playing around with the lemon-to-olive oil ratio in order to make a sauce that includes enough lemon, but doesn’t make your mouth pucker in a sour grin. Next time, I’d like to add chicken or perhaps olives and tomatoes. Until then…
This past weekend, we stumbled upon the new issue of Cooking Light. The cover featured a gorgeous salad (yes, gorgeous). The reason why I use that description is a result of the medley of colors and flavors that this salad uses. Without looking into the exact ingredients, we were all completely sold by the picture. So, after a quick trip to the store to grab some items, we were set to make this fabulous salad.
So, what do you think? Does our representation look like the cover of this issue’s Cooking Light? I’ll let you be the judge. Nonetheless, I would feel confident to say that it is pretty hard to mess up a salad (especially this salad). The only “real” manual labor results in the cooking of bacon and shrimp. Next, chop the vegetables and combine the liquid ingredients to make the salad dressing. Combine and enjoy!
I will totally look forward to making this salad again on a perfect summer evening. Plus, with a low calorie and fat count, you can’t go wrong!
P.S. Check out the current issue of Cooking Light for other interesting recipes!
After making this recipe, the song “My Favorite Things” from Mary Poppins started to play in my head. At first this seemed strange, but then it dawned on me why this song was stuck in my head — this recipe encompasses many of my favorite ingredients: lemon, basil, cheese, and garbanzo beans.
But, to be perfectly honest, I usually do not make “bean salads.” So, nonetheless, I was a bit hesitant to try this recipe of Chickpea Salad with Lemon, Parmesan, and Fresh Herbs; however, since it contained my favorite ingredients, I was hoping that the marriage of these elements would produce a fantastic result.
This recipe was a definite hit. The only modification I would make is to reduce the amount of lemon juice. But, other than that, this recipe is so simple that I will continue again and again to make it on days when I’m not in the mood to cook!
When I was younger, my mom frequently used her bread-maker to make fresh bread and strawberry mango jam on Sunday mornings in the summertime. I loved the jams that she used to make and yearned for the weekend mornings when I would awake to the wafting smell of syrupy strawberries circulating from the kitchen. Needless to say, I was more than heartbroken when I heard the unfortunate news that our precious bread-maker had ceased to work. Fast-forwarding many years to today, my craving for homemade bread remerged. But, I faced a huge dilemma: I found myself without a bread-maker and lacking in the ingredients to make jam. The once revered sourdough bread topped with delectable preserves was out of the question; however, I could make a type of bread by baking a buttery rendition of Cracked Pepper Foccacia. Dilemma solved!
Step 1: Mix Olive Oil, Salt, Pepper,
Yeast, and Water Together
Step 2: Stir in Flour to Mixture and Put
Into Ball; Let Rise for 45 Minutes
Step 3: Stretch Dough Into Pan; Spread
Rosemary, Thyme, and Salt On Top
Step 4: Bake, Slice, and Serve With
Balsamic Vinegar and Olive Oil
I was amazed at how well this bread turned out (especially considering the fact that I baked it for a few minutes too long!). Personally, I think this tastes best when fresh out of the oven. Although I liked the rosemary and thyme spices combined with sea salt, I’d like to experiment with other items from the flavor palette next time. Perhaps some kalamata olives, peppers, sundried tomatoes, or whole garlic cloves for next time?
Within the past few months, I have truly learned to appreciate the small things in life and to be thankful for normal, everyday things most people take for granted. That being said, I am thankful (again) for Thanksgiving because it serves as a perfect reminder to remember what you are thankful for and count your blessings!
Don’t forget to tell your family and friends this Thanksgiving season that you are thankful for them — just a few words can make such a significant difference!
All right, it is time to move onto other Thanksgiving festivities a.k.a FOOD. It is definitely a good thing that Thanksgiving comes only once a year for according to the NYDailyNews.com, the average Thanksgiving meal rakes in a whopping 3,500 calories! Despite learning that terrifying fact, I still wanted to cook the usual Thanksgiving foods; however, I tried to make some of these foods a tad bit healthier (key words being “tried” and “some”)!
Now, it’s no myth that the reason why Thanksgiving foods are so unhealthy lies in the ingredients with butter, cream, sugar, and nuts as the prime culprits. And, vegetables dishes are usually sparse at Thanksgiving, but even when they are present, they are often laden with plenty of cream, cheese, and fried goodness. Nevertheless, the following pictures highlight a few of the side dishes I made for Thanksgiving as well as my Mom’s Turkey (side dish recipes taken from Epicurious.com and all contain a link to the original recipe):
1. Potato Gratin with White Cheddar Cheese
2. Italian Sausage and Bread Stuffing
I forgot to take a picture of the finished product… oops!
3. Roasted Sweet Potato Rounds with Garlic Oil and Fried Sage
5. Lemon Pear Croustade
All of these side dishes actually turned out pretty well considering these were first-time recipes! Although only one of these recipes is a little bit healthier (Roasted Sweet Potatoes), I would totally recommend to make any of these dishes again. The Pear Croustade was a bit hit with the family and I will continue to use its pasty recipe for other future baked goods!