Fennel, Orange and Kalamata Olive Salad

4 08 2014

I’m not much of a fennel fan, but I really enjoy it in this dish! I had this salad at a party this summer and knew I’d replicate it once we got fennel in our Fresh Fork Market grab bag. And this past week we did….so, here’s the yummy salad! Fresh, delicious and crunchy, this salad is great as a side dish for dinner, or is a perfect addition to your picnic fare.

Fennel, Orange and Kalamata Olive Salad

The following serves 4 as a side salad (compliments of This Girl’s Gotta Eat):

  • 1 fennel bulb, thinly sliced
  • Handful of fennel fronds, chopped
  • Zest of 1 small orange
  • 2 oranges, peeled, separated and pits removed and sliced in bite size pieces – watch out for seeds
  • 1 heaping cup of pitted kalamata olives
  • 1/4 cup of oil from the olives, or olive oil
  • 2 – 3 Tbsp of white wine vinegar
  • Small pinch of salt
  • Ground black pepper to taste
  • 2.5 ounces, or half a small container of organic arugula

Combine the fennel, fronds, orange zest, orange pieces, olives, oil, vinegar and salt and pepper in a medium-large bowl. Mix well and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Taste, and add more oil or vinegar to your liking if needed.

Dish out arugula and top with the fennel, oranges and olives.

“Greek Salad” Chicken

15 04 2014

This speedy supper is a take on a pasta dish I found in my latest issue of the Food Network Magazine. They used ingredients commonly found in a Greek salad, cooked them up and tossed them with spinach pasta. Looked delicious, so I thought I’d use the same ingredients with chicken, for a low-carb option instead.

"Greek Salad" Chicken

“Greek Salad” Chicken

The following serves 2-3 (adapted from Food Network Magazine):

  • 3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 small boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • Kosher salt
  • Garlic powder
  • 1 bell pepper, red or yellow, cut into 1/2-inch strips
  • 1 can (15 oz) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 heaping cup pitted kalamata olives, chopped
  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat, low-sodium chicken stock
  • 2 packed cups organic baby arugula
  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat, crumbled feta cheese
  • Lemon flavored oil for serving

Heat 2 Tbsp of oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Season chicken lightly with salt and garlic powder, then add to the hot skillet and cook until browned on both sides, 5-8 minutes, flipping half way through. Remove the chicken to a plate and set aside.

Lower heat to medium. Add remaining Tbsp of oil to the same skillet and add peppers. Cook, stirring occasionally, until just tender, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic, red pepper flakes and oregano and cook for a minute until fragrant. Next add the chickpeas and season very lightly with salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until everything is lightly browned, another 3-5 minutes. Next add the olives and deglaze with the chicken stock bringing to a slow bubble, and scrapping up any brown bits that may have formed on the bottom of the skillet. Slide the browned chicken back in, lower heat and simmer until cooked through, 5 minutes.

Remove from the heat and stir in the arugula until wilted (you may want to remove the chicken first to give yourself more room to work with). Divide the pepper and chickpea mixture among plates, top with pieces of chicken, crumbled feta and a drizzle of the lemon flavored oil (or extra-virgin olive oil).

Pasta option: If you wanted to make the pasta option, simply cook up 12 oz of dry penne to al dente, save 1/2 cup of the cooking water and toss the penne and the starchy water with the rest of the cooked ingredients. Finish the dish the same way, with feta and a drizzle of olive oil.

Tuscan Skillet With Chicken, Beans, Shrooms and Greens

14 02 2014

Whipped this one skillet beauty together by rifling through my fridge and pantry for goodies to cook with! It may not be fancy for Valentine’s Day, but in true Tuscan fashion, this dinner is simple and delicious. It’s all about building flavors one layer at a time.

Tuscan Skillet With Chicken, Beans, Shrooms and Greens

Tuscan Skillet With Chicken, Beans, Shrooms and Greens

The following serves 2 (compliments of This Girl’s Gotta Eat):

  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed
  • Herb salt
  • 4 pieces of turkey bacon, chopped
  • 1 shallot, thinly sliced
  • 2 large
  • garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 package (10 oz) baby bella mushrooms, sliced
  • Dry white wine
  • 1 can (15 oz) cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 oz arugula
  • 8 oz dry orzo
  • Fresh parsley, chopped
  • Grated parmesan cheese
  • Optional: lemon oil and red pepper flakes

Bring a pot of water to boil.

Season chicken liberally with a herb salt (or whatever seasoning and dried herbs you like, I use a combo of kosher salt, rosemary, garlic powder, paprika and lemon zest). Heat a Tbsp of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and add chicken. Saute, stirring occasionally until heated through and starting to brown, 5-6 minutes. Remove to a plate.

In the same skillet add the bacon. Cook until to browned and crisp. Remove to another plate.

Next, add a little more oil and the shallots and garlic to the same skillet. Cook another minute or so until beginning to softened and fragrant. Add the mushrooms and cook until starting to brown, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Season with salt to taste.

While the mushrooms saute, cook the orzo according to package directions in the pot with the boiling water. Save a little of the cooking water, then drain. Return to the pot you cooked it in and toss with a little lemon oil.

Once the mushrooms are starting to brown, add some white wine to deglaze, a good turn of the pan, scrapping up all the browned bits on the bottom. Add the beans, chicken and orzo, stirring everything together. Add a little of the cooking water, cook a few more minutes until beans and chicken are heated through. Remove from heat and toss in the arugula to wilt slightly.

Dish up and top with bacon crumbles just before serving. Garnish with parsley, parmesan and red pepper flakes (if you like a little heat).

Mushroom Wonton Ravioli With a Pesto-Bechamel Sauce

16 01 2014

Since you get a healthy amount of wonton wrappers in one package, it can be a challenge to use them all at once. Need an idea for what to do with the extras? There are so many great things you can whip up, including quick ravioli! And of course, what is ravioli without sauce? A great sauce doesn’t have to take all day…for instance a bechamel, which is a white sauce made from milk and a roux of butter or oil and flour, can be made on a weeknight. You can add cheese to flavor it, or even a little homemade or store-bought pesto, which goes great with this mushroom filling.

Mushroom Wonton Ravioli With a Pesto-Bechamel Sauce

Mushroom Wonton Ravioli With a Pesto-Bechamel Sauce

The following serves 2 (compliments of This Girl’s Gotta Eat):

  • Olive oil
  • 1 shallot, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 (8 oz) package sliced baby bella mushrooms
  • Wonton wrappers
  • 2 Tbsp whole wheat flour
  • 2 cups skim milk
  • Nutmeg, grated
  • 2 Tbsp pesto
  • Parmesan cheese, grated

In a large skillet, heat a little oil over medium-high and saute shallot until soft, a few minutes. Add garlic and red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, another minute. Add mushrooms and cook until browned, stirring often for about 5 minutes. Turn off heat and allow mushrooms to cool slightly. Mix in some parmesan cheese.

Bring a pot of water to boil and make the ravioli. Place some of the mushroom mixture in the center of a wonton wrapper. Don’t over stuff or the wonton will tear. Dip finger in a bowl of water and moisten the sides of the wrapper. Fold the wrapper over into a triangle and press moistened sides together to stick.  Finish building the ravioli and set aside.

Next work on the bechamel sauce, you can make this right in the skillet you used to cook the mushrooms. Heat 2 Tbsp of oil, once hot, whisk in 2 Tbsp of flour. Cook for a minute to make sure the flour is incorporated into the oil. Then, whisk in the milk. Continue to whisk until sauce thickens. Season with a little grated nutmeg to taste. Finally, stir in pesto. Lower heat to simmer and keep warm.

Once the water is boiling, drop in the ravioli and cook for 2-3 minutes. When they come to the top they’re done. Remove ravioli with a slotted spoon and add right in the skillet with the pesto-bechamel sauce. Gently toss ravioli to coat in the sauce.

Divide ravioli among plates and top with a little more sauce and parmesan cheese. If you have extra mushroom filling you can garnish with that as well. This can be a meatless meal, or you can serve with a protein of your choice, such as sauteed chicken with arugula (shown above).

Sausage and Arugula Frittata Cups

12 01 2014

I’m not looking forward to starting a new work week tomorrow, but I am excited for breakfast! 🙂 These little beauties pack a punch of flavor, and couldn’t be easier to make. Rather than making a frittata (an Italian baked omelette), I made these in a muffin tin so I could easily grab-n-go. Whip up a batch on Sunday and enjoy these for breakfast throughout the week.

Sausage and Arugula Frittata Cups

Sausage and Arugula Frittata Cups

The following makes 12 frittata cups (compliments of This Girl’s Gotta Eat):

  • 10 eggs
  • 8 oz cooked breakfast turkey sausage, finely chopped (such as a box of Bob Evan’s patties)
  • 1 cup sharp provolone cheese, shredded or grated
  • 1 cup packed arugula
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 and spray a 12 cup muffin tin with non stick spray.

Whisk eggs and season with salt and pepper to taste. Fold in sausage, cheese and arugula.

Fill the muffin tin evenly with the egg mixture, don’t worry if some of the arugula is sticking out, it will just look rustic when it’s done. Bake for 20 minutes, or until eggs are set. Remove from the oven and top with a little salt and pepper.

Store in a covered container in the fridge and enjoy cups for breakfast throughout the week.

To make an actual frittata (great on the weekends!), heat a little butter or oil in a large oven-proof skillet and add the egg mixture. Cook for a few minutes until the eggs begin to set on the bottom and the sides, then transfer to a preheated 350 degree oven and bake for 20-25 minutes until eggs are cooked through and the top begins to brown. To remove the frittata from the skillet, loosen around the sides with a spatula and flip onto a plate or cutting board. Cut into pie pieces and serve with hot sauce.

Last Night’s Leftover Ingredients = Today’s Lunch: Provolone & Prosciutto Grilled Cheese With Arugula Salad

5 02 2012

I never leave food behind; I always enjoy leftovers for lunch or use them to create a new dinner; turning those leftover ingredients into thoughtful and creative dishes! For a quick lunch today, I used leftover ingredients from last night’s delicious dinner: Provolone and prosciutto grilled cheese with a simple arugula salad.

Provolone & Prosciutto Grilled Cheese With Arugula Salad

Provolone and prosciutto grilled cheese:

  • 2 slices of Italian bread
  • 2 slices of provolone cheese
  • 1 slice of prosciutto
  • Butter or olive oil garlic spread

Spread slices of bread with butter or an olive oil garlic spread (I get this in the deli of my grocery store for quick garlic bread and grilled cheese recipes). On the inside of a slice of buttered bread, layer one slice of cheese, the slice of prosciutto, next add the other slice of cheese and top with the other piece of buttered bread. Saute in a small skillet over medium-low heat until toasty brown on one side. Flip, pressing down to help the ingredients stick together, and continue toasting until the second side is brown.

Arugula and spring mix salad:

  • Handful of arugula and handful of baby spring mix salad
  • Good sprinkle of garlic powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • Good drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil
  • Drizzle of red wine vinegar

Mix all ingredients together and taste – adjust the oil and vinegar to your liking. I have a heavy hand when it comes to the vinegar 🙂

Saltimbocca Chicken Breasts With Sage Pan Sauce Over Creamy Arugula Pasta

5 02 2012

In Italian, saltimbocca literally means to “jump in the mouth.” And the combination of prosciutto, provolone cheese and sage are just that delicious! The pasta with greens compliments the classic flavors of saltimbocca too. This meal doesn’t take as long as it may seem, but elicits a special feeling…great to make for date night!

Saltimbocca Chicken Breasts With Sage Pan Sauce Over Creamy Arugula Pasta

The following serve 2 (compliments of Cuisine For Two):

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 5 oz each)
  • Ground black pepper
  • 2 oz provolone cheese, cut into two sticks
  • 4 slices prosciutto
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp unsalted butter, plus another 2 Tbsp butter, softened
  • 1 Tbsp minced shallots
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1/3 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tsp minced fresh sage

For the pasta:

  • 4 oz dry angel hair pasta
  • 3 Tbsp heavy cream
  • 2 Tbsp grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup torn arugula

Preheat oven to 400. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil to cook the pasta, cover the pot with a lid to speed up the boiling time.

Season chicken with pepper, cut a slit in each, then stuff with cheese. Wrap each breast with two overlapping slices of prosciutto. The slices I had were a little on the small side, so I ended up using three slices each.

Saute chicken in oil and 1 tsp butter in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Cook, turning to brown all sides, 6-8 minutes total. Place chicken bundles on a rack set on a baking sheet; transfer chicken to the oven for 5 minutes to finish cooking. Remove chicken and let rest 5 minutes before serving.

When you put the chicken in the oven, work on the sauce. Saute shallots for sauce in 1 tsp butter over medium-high heat using the same skillet in which the chicken was browned. Cook until shallots are soft, about 1 minute. Deglaze pan with wine; simmer over high heat until liquid nearly evaporates. Add broth and lemon juice; simmer until liquid is reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Stir in 2 Tbsp butter and sage.

When you take the chicken out of the oven to rest, work on the pasta (your pasta water should be boiling by now). Cook the pasta in boiling water for about 4 minutes. In a bowl, whisk together the cream, parmesan, egg yolk, zest, pepper flakes, salt and pepper – then top with arugula. Drain the pasta and add it to the bowl. Toss to coat pasta with sauce and to wilt the arugula.

Place one chicken bundle on each of two plates; drizzle with sauce and serve alongside pasta.