03 Sep Stuffed Zucchini

Ingredients:

  • 5-6 large zucchinis
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • 6 ounces of fresh mozzarella, cut into small cubes
  • 4 cups of basic marinara sauce
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup fresh chopped basil
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped Italian parsley
  • 1/2 cup of panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper

Directions:

1.  Prep zucchini by cutting them in half lengthwise and scooping out some of the flesh from the center of each half leaving about a 1/4 inch thick shell. Season the flesh side with a little salt and pepper. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees

2.  Coat a large pan with olive oil (about 3-4 tablespoons) and sauté the onion until soft (10 minutes or so). Add the garlic and cook for another few minutes. Add the ground chicken to the pan, season with salt and pepper. Cook until the chicken is completely cooked. Turn off the heat, add a cup of the tomato sauce to the chicken and mix well. Let the mixture cool, (you don’t want to scramble your eggs) then add the beaten eggs, the basil, the parsley and cubed mozzarella and mix well.

3.  Spray 2 large baking dishes with non-stick spray and add 1 1/2 cup of tomato sauce to each baking dish. Spoon some of the chicken mixture into each zucchini shell filling them nice and full so that the filling is rounded on top and place them on top of the sauce in a single layer. In a small bowl, mix together the bread crumbs and parmesan cheese with some salt and pepper. Sprinkle the mix onto the top of the zucchini’s and then drizzle them with olive oil (about 2 tablespoons or so). Bake uncovered for 25-30 minutes or until zucchinis are tender and the tops are golden. You may need a minute or two under the broiler to get the tops nice and golden. Serve garnished with fresh basil.

** May substitute ground beef or ground turkey for ground chicken. Makes 6 servings in 2 baking dishes

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26 Aug Tips for Grilling Chicken

Close the top: If your grill has a cover, always cook your chicken with the cover down. It will make your grill more oven-like, and your food will cook more evenly. Also, because the cover cuts off some of the oxygen, you’ll have fewer flare-ups.

Be patient: Resist the urge to continuously move the chicken around while it cooks.  Use long-handled tongs-Poking chicken with a fork will cause precious juices to escape.

Test for doneness: Make a small cut into the thickest part so you can be positive that it’s no longer pink inside. You can also use a meat thermometer to check if your meat has reached a safe internal temperature: 180 degrees F. for whole chicken, and 170 degrees F. for breasts.

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26 Aug Grilled Chicken Ratatouille

Ingredients

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, (about 1 1/4 pounds)
  • 1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise
  • 1 red bell pepper, halved lengthwise, stemmed and seeded
  • 4 small tomatoes, halved lengthwise
  • 1 small eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
  • 1 medium red onion, cut into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh marjoram
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Canola or olive oil cooking spray
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, 1 tablespoon red-wine vinegar

Directions

  1. Preheat grill to medium-high.
  2. Combine oil, basil, marjoram and salt in a small bowl and reserve 1 tablespoon of the mixture in another small bowl; set aside.
  3. Coat both sides of bell pepper, eggplant, zucchini, tomato and onion pieces with cooking spray. Grill the vegetables, turning once, until soft and charred in spots, about 5 minutes per side for the pepper, 4 minutes per side for the eggplant and zucchini and 3 minutes per side for the tomatoes and onion.
  4. Rub the tablespoon of reserved herb mixture on both sides of chicken and sprinkle with pepper. Grill the chicken until cooked through and no longer pink in the center, 4 to 5 minutes per side.
  5. Transfer the grilled vegetables to a cutting board and chop into 1-inch pieces. Return to the bowl and toss with vinegar and the remaining herb mixture. Serve the grilled chicken with the ratatouille. 4 Servings
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21 Aug Easy Peach Cobbler

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar, divided
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 cups fresh peach slices
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • Ground cinnamon or nutmeg (optional)

Directions

1.  Melt butter in a 13- x 9-inch baking dish.

2.  Combine flour, 1 cup sugar, baking powder, and salt; add milk, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened. Pour batter over butter (do not stir).

3.  Bring remaining 1 cup sugar, peach slices, and lemon juice to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly; pour over batter (do not stir). Sprinkle with cinnamon, if desired.

4.  Bake at 375° for 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown. Serve cobbler warm or cool. 10 servings

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21 Aug Chicken and Peach Curry

Ingredients

  • 2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/2 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 2 tsp Thai red curry paste (for a hot curry, add 1/2 to 1 tsp more)
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp finely grated lime peel
  • 1 cup light coconut milk
  • 1 peach, skinned and sliced
  • 2 handfuls of fresh green beans
  • 1 small red pepper, (cayenne or other pepper) thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced,
  • 2 Tbsp coarsely chopped cilantro or green onion
  • Cooked rice

Directions

1.  Using a sharp knife, cut the chicken into 3/4-inch cubes; reserve.

2.  Heat oil in a wok or frying pan over high heat. Add the onion and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add the chicken and the garlic and cook until the chicken is golden-brown and almost cooked through, about 5 minutes. Add the red curry paste, sugar, lime peel, red pepper, and coconut milk and stir until well mixed. Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes.

3.  Meanwhile, skin and slice the peaches. Add the green beans to the chicken mixture. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add peaches right before serving. Sprinkle with basil, green onions and cilantro. Serve over rice, serves 4

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15 Aug Cajun Fried Okra

Ingredients

  • 6 cups oil, for frying
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 pounds fresh okra, sliced 1/2-inch thick
  • 1/4 teaspoon Cajun spice
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk

Directions

1.  Heat oil in a large, heavy-bottomed skillet or Dutch oven to 350 degrees F. (You may not need to use this much oil; do not fill the pan more than halfway up the sides with oil.)

2.  In a medium bowl, combine cornmeal, flour, House Seasoning (see below), and Cajun spice.

3.  Dip okra in buttermilk and then dredge in cornmeal-flour mixture to coat well.

4.  Carefully add okra to the hot oil and cook until golden brown. (It may be necessary to fry the okra in batches.) Remove from oil, drain on paper towels, and then serve immediately. 6-10 servings

 

House Seasoning:

  • 1 cup salt
  • 1/4 cup black pepper
  • 1/4 cup garlic powder

Mix ingredients together and store in an airtight container for up to 6 months.

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15 Aug Okra and Tomatoes

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh okra, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 4 slices bacon, diced into small pieces
  • 1 small onion, peeled and chopped, 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 ripe tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chicken base
  • 1 tablespoon sugar, fresh ground black pepper

Directions

1.  Cook bacon slightly. Saute onion and garlic with bacon until tender.

2.  Add tomatoes, chicken base, sugar and pepper. Stir well and let simmer for about 20 minutes. Adjust seasoning if needed.

3.  Meanwhile wash okra and remove fuzz and cut into pieces. Add the okra and simmer until okra is done, about 20 more minutes. 4 servings

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03 Aug Marinated Vegetable Salad

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1 tbp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tbp Dijon mustard, 1 tbp minced garlic
  • 3/4 tsp salt, 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 3 cups cauliflower florets
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes
  • 1 cup bottled cherry peppers, halved
  • 3 medium zucchini, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 3 carrots, peeled and cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced

Directions

1. In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, Italian seasoning, Dijon mustard, garlic, salt, sugar, and pepper. In a large bowl, combine the cauliflower, cherry tomatoes, cherry pepper halves, zucchini, carrots, and onion.

2. Pour the dressing mixture over the vegetables, tossing gently to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours, stirring occasionally- 8 servings

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03 Aug Pasta with Garden Tomatoes and Fresh Mozzarella

Ingredients

  • 2/3 pound fresh mozzarella (1/2-inch cubes)
  • 1/2 tsp coarse sea salt
  • 1 cup olive oil, 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped garlic1 pound pasta
  • 4 cups chopped vine-ripened tomatoes, seeded
  • 3/4 cup freshly grated Romano cheese
  • 1/2 cup chopped basil

Directions
1. Toss mozzarella and salt together, and set aside. Fill a medium stockpot with water and bring to a boil.

2. Heat the oil and butter in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic, reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is very tender — about 10 minutes.

3. Cook the pasta in the boiling water until al dente. Add the tomatoes to the cooked onions, and increase the heat to medium-high. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until just tender — about 5 minutes.

4. Drain the pasta, and toss into the tomato-onion mixture to evenly coat. Remove from the heat and stir in the salted mozzarella and 1/4 cup Romano cheese.

5. Transfer to a large platter and garnish with fresh basil leaves and remaining 1/2 cup cheese. Serve immediately. 8 servings

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27 Jul Watermelon, Heirloom Tomato, and Feta Salad

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped mixed fresh herbs
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 heirloom tomatoes, cut into chunks
  • 1 cup (1-inch) cubed red seedless watermelon
  • 1 cup (1-inch) cubed seeded yellow watermelon
  • 1/4 cup vertically sliced red onion
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

Directions

1.  Whisk together first 4 ingredients in a large bowl.

2.  Add tomato, watermelon, and onion; toss to coat.

3.  Sprinkle with cheese; toss gently. Makes 6 servings.

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