Thursday, August 27, 2015

Spicy Chicken Lettuce Wraps


If you're looking for a light meal or appetizer, look no further. These sweet and spicy lettuce wraps are light and fresh with a wonderful crunch!

1. Combine sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.


2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes.


3. Add bell pepper, jalapeno, celery, snap peas and carrot and cook for 3 minutes longer, stirring often.


4. Finish with green onion, water chestnuts, basil and sauce; stirring to combine.



5. Serve chicken mixture in lettuce cups and garnish with peanuts.


Spicy Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Serves 4

All you need:
Sauce
4 tablespoons light soy sauce
2 teaspoon freshly grated peeled ginger
1 teaspoon agave nectar (or honey)
2 garlic cloves, grated
Juice of 1 lime
2 tablespoons Hoisin sauce
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound ground chicken
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
2 stalks celery, thinly sliced
1/2 cup sugar snap peas, diced
1/2 cup shredded carrots
1 bunch green onion, thinly sliced
1 (8 oz.) can water chestnuts, drained and roughly chopped
10 fresh basil leaves, chopped
10 large Boston lettuce leaves
1/2 cup dry-roasted peanuts, chopped

All you do:
1. Combine sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.
2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes.
3. Add bell pepper, jalapeno, celery, snap peas and carrot and cook for 3 minutes longer, stirring often.
4. Finish with green onion, water chestnuts, basil and sauce; stirring to combine.
5. Serve chicken mixture in lettuce cups and garnish with peanuts.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Summer Vegetable Lasagna with Parsley Walnut Pesto


This lasagna is so fresh and decadent. While summer begins to wind down, it's time to take full advantage of all the wonderful produce available at the store and farmer's market. I decided to use corn, green beans, eggplant and zucchini, but you can add whatever veggies you like. The parsley pesto adds an extra touch of richness that makes this dish truly irresistible! 

1. Preheat oven to 350. 
2. Combine pesto ingredients in a food processor. Transfer to a bowl and set aside. 



3. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook for 1 minute. Add zucchini, corn, green beans and eggplant and cook for 5 minutes longer, stirring often. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer mixture to a bowl. 



4. In the same skillet, melt butter and add flour, whisking constantly for 2 minutes. Add milk and bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer and cook for 2 minutes longer. Stir in cheese and reserved vegetables and turn heat off. 



5. Combine ricotta, egg, Parmesan and salt in a mixing bowl. 


6. Assemble lasagna: Cover bottom of a 13x9 pan with the veggie sauce. Follow with a layer of nooles, then ricotta, then mozzarella cheese. Repeat two more times. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes; uncover and bake for 10 minutes longer. Allow lasagna to sit 5 minutes before cutting. 





7. Serve each lasagna slice with a dollop of pesto. 


 Summer Vegetable Lasagna with Parsley Walnut Pesto
Serves 8

All you need:
Pesto
1 bunch Italian parsley, leaves only
1/4 cup chopped walnuts, toasted 
1 clove garlic 
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese 
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, diced 
1 small zucchini, diced 
1/2 cup fresh corn kernels (about 2 ears corn) 
1 cup fresh green beans, cut into pieces 
1 small eggplant, peeled and diced 
3 tablespoon unsalted butter
3 tablespoons flour 
3 cups whole milk 
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese  

2 cups whole milk ricotta cheese 
1 egg, beaten 
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese 
1/4 teaspoon salt 

1 (9 oz.) package no-boil lasagna noodles 
2 cups whole milk shredded mozzarella cheese 

All you do:
1. Preheat oven to 350. 
2. Combine pesto ingredients in a food processor. Transfer to a bowl and set aside. 
3. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook for 1 minute. Add zucchini, corn, green beans and eggplant and cook for 5 minutes longer, stirring often. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer mixture to a bowl. 
4. In the same skillet, melt butter and add flour, whisking constantly for 2 minutes. Add milk and bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer and cook for 2 minutes longer. Stir in cheese and reserved vegetables and turn heat off. 
5. Combine ricotta, egg, Parmesan and salt in a mixing bowl. 
6. Assemble lasagna: Cover bottom of a 13x9 pan with the veggie sauce. Follow with a layer of nooles, then ricotta, then mozzarella cheese. Repeat two more times. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes; uncover and bake for 10 minutes longer. Allow lasagna to sit 5 minutes before cutting. 
7. Serve each lasagna slice with a dollop of pesto. 

 
 

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Italian Meatballs with Fire Roasted Tomato Sauce

 This is one dish I can definitely say will satisfy all taste buds and makes great leftovers (served in a sub roll, perhaps!). The sweet peppers and sundried tomatoes in the meatballs balance perfectly with the sauce. If you're looking to make this dish lighter, simply swap ground chicken or turkey for the beef.


1. Preheat oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil.
2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, red pepper, sundried tomato, onion powder and garlic powder and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Season with salt and pepper, remove pan from heat and allow mixture to cool slightly.

3. Place ground beef in a large bowl. Add the cooled veggie mixture, breadcrumbs, basil, egg, Worcestershire, salt and pepper. Form into balls and place on the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until cooked through.




4. Meanwhile, place tomato sauce, tomato paste and Italian seasoning in the same skillet used for the veggies and bring to a simmer. Cook on low, stirring often, for 10 minutes. Finish with fresh basil.



5. Serve meatballs topped with sauce and sprinkled with cheese, if desired.


Italian Meatballs with Fire Roasted Tomato Sauce
Serves 4


All you need:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 red onion, diced small
1/4 red bell pepper, diced small
5 sundried tomato halves, diced small
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 1/2 pounds ground beef
1 cup Italian breadcrumbs
5 fresh basil leaves, chopped
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste

Sauce
2 (14.5 oz.) cans fire roasted tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
5 fresh basil leaves, chopped

1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, for topping (optional)

All you do:
1. Preheat oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil.
2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, red pepper, sundried tomato, onion powder and garlic powder and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Season with salt and pepper, remove pan from heat and allow mixture to cool slightly.
3. Place ground beef in a large bowl. Add the cooled veggie mixture, breadcrumbs, basil, egg, Worcestershire, salt and pepper. Form into balls and place on the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until cooked through.
4. Meanwhile, place tomato sauce, tomato paste and Italian seasoning in the same skillet used for the veggies and bring to a simmer. Cook on low, stirring often, for 10 minutes. Finish with fresh basil.
5. Serve meatballs topped with sauce and sprinkled with cheese, if desired.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Peach Waldorf Salad


When peaches are in season, I buy them in bulk! Not only do I love them for breakfast and snacking, but they are a wonderful addition to salads. I decided to make a version of the classic waldorf salad, but use golden raisins and peaches instead. This is a great dish to take to a picnic, but also awesome as a light lunch or side dish at dinner (with pork chops or chicken). Yum!

1. Combine peaches, grapes, celery, walnuts and raisins in a large bowl. 


2. In a small bowl, combine mayo, yogurt, parsley, lemon juice, honey, salt and pepper. 


3. Pour dressing over the peach mixture and toss to combine. Keep salad cold until ready to serve. 




   

Peach Waldorf Salad
Serves 6

All you need:
2 peaches, pitted and diced 
1 cup green grapes, halved
1 cup red grapes, halved 
1 stalk celery, thinly sliced 
1/2 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup mayo
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt 
1/4 bunch flat-leaf parsley, chopped
Juice of 1 lemon
2 teaspoons honey
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

All you do:
1. Combine peaches, grapes, celery, walnuts and raisins in a large bowl. 
2. In a small bowl, combine mayo, yogurt, parsley, lemon juice, honey, salt and pepper. 
3. Pour dressing over the peach mixture and toss to combine. Keep salad cold until ready to serve. 
   

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Fish Tacos with Watermelon and Avocado Salsa


 It's watermelon season! While great on it's own (and oh so refreshing), I wanted to use it in a recipe. This salsa is the perfect combination of sweet and spicy and the avocado adds a nice creamy bite. Feel free to use whatever you fish you like, but I think flaky cod works great. If you have any leftover salsa, scoop it up with some whole grain tortilla chips!


1. Combine salsa ingredients in a bowl. Cover tightly with plastic and place in the fridge. 


2. Heat a grill pan (or large saute pan) to medium-high. Coat cod with garlic powder, chili powder, salt and oil. Cook for 4 minutes per side, or until cooked through. Transfer to a platter. 





3. Warm tortillas in the same pan, then fill with fish and salsa. 


 Fish Tacos with Watermelon and Avocado Salsa 
Serves 4 (3 tacos each) 

All you need:
Salsa - 
2 cups finely diced watermelon 
1/4 red onion, finely diced 
1/4 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped 
Juice and zest of 2 limes 
1 small jalapeno, seeded and diced 
1 small ripe avocado, peeled, pitted and cubed 
Pinch salt 
Pinch sugar 

1 1/2 pounds fresh cod 
2 teaspoons garlic powder 
2 teaspoons chili powder 
1/2 teaspoon salt 
2 tablespoons olive oil 

12 corn tortillas 

All you do:
1. Combine salsa ingredients in a bowl. Cover tightly with plastic and place in the fridge. 
2. Heat a grill pan (or large saute pan) to medium-high. Coat cod with garlic powder, chili powder, salt and oil. Cook for 4 minutes per side, or until cooked through. Transfer to a platter. 
3. Warm tortillas in the same pan, then fill with fish and salsa.