Thursday, July 26, 2012

Zucchini Corn Cheesecake with Pan Roasted Tomatoes

I have lots of favorite comfort foods, but cheesecake is definitely one of my favorites. This week while I was recipe testing I decided to think outside the box and create a cheesecake that would be acceptable for dinner instead of dessert AND also be healthy. It posed quite a challenge but it was exciting to see the result. Most cheesecakes require a long baking time but this one will be on the table in 35 minutes. The pan roasted tomato topping makes it extra special.

Zucchini Corn Cheesecake with Pan Roasted Tomatoes

3/4 cup plain breadcrumbs, toasted          
1 TB butter, melted  
10 oz. silken tofu
2 oz. light cream cheese
1/3 cup feta cheese, crumbled
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 cup frozen corn, thawed (could also use canned or fresh)
1/2 cup zucchini, diced small
2 cups cherry tomatoes, whole (could also use golden cherry tomatoes)
Salt and pepper 

Method:
1. Preheat oven to 425.
2. Combine breadcrumbs with melted butter, salt and pepper and press onto the bottom of a 8 inch pie plate. Bake 5 minutes and allow to cool.
3. Meanwhile, combine the tofu, cream cheese, feta, basil and thyme in a food processor or blender until smooth. Pour mixture into a mixing bowl and combine with corn and zucchini. Season.
4. Spread the mixture evenly onto the breadcrumb crust and bake 30 minutes.
5. While the cheesecake bakes, heat 1 TB olive oil in a medium skillet over medium high heat and add the tomatoes. Season the tomatoes and allow them to cook until they start to "pop". Once this occurs, turn the heat down the low and let the tomatoes continue to cook, stirring occasionally.
6. When the cheesecake is done, pop it in the freezer for 5 minutes to allow it to set completely.

Serve cheesecake topped with tomatoes. A perfect way to enjoy summer vegetables while they're still in season!



                        

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Lemon Pepper Chicken

When the weather is this hot, you know its grill time! I've always been a huge fan of lemon pepper chicken but I decided to create my own version using lemon zest, ground pepper and kosher salt. So yummy and fresh. I finished the chicken with an extra splash of lemon juice as well. I served the chicken over a bed a fresh romaine from the farmer's market, whole wheat rotini, sun dried tomatoes and a dijon balsamic vinaigrette. The combination was so good we finished the entire platter!

Lemon Pepper Chicken

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts (6 oz each)
Zest of 2 lemons
1 Tbsp. fresh ground pepper
2 tsp. kosher salt

Method:
Rub chicken breasts with the spice mixture and enough olive oil to coat. Heat to grill to medium heat. Grill chicken breasts on each side for 5-6 minutes or until juices run clear. Finish with the more fresh lemon juice.


Dijon Balsamic Vinaigrette

2 Tbsp. good balsamic vinegar (the longer its aged, the sweeter your vinaigrette)
1 Tbsp. dijon mustard
2 tsp. honey
1/3 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper