Healthy Mediterranean Cooking at Home

Monthly Archives: February 2021

 

2 servings

Ingredients

2 small baby bok choy, trimmed and halved lengthwise
2 tablespoons chicken broth
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce
1/.4 teaspoon red chili flakes
2 tablespoons peanut oil/ divided
12 medium shrimp, peeled, deveined
6 sea scallops
½ teaspoon Kosher or sea salt, divided
2 slices fresh ginger, 1⁄4 inch thick, peeled and crushed with a knife
1 large clove garlic, sliced
1 scallion. minced

 

Directions

In a small bowl, whisk together the broth, oyster sauce, soy sauce, sugar, cornstarch, sesame oil, rice wine, and chili paste.

Cut the scallops horizontally in half so that all the pieces are about 1/2 inch thick
Cu the shrimp in half lengthwise. Pat the seafood dry with paper towels.

Heat a large skillet with a cover over high heat until a drop of water sizzles on contact and add 1 tablespoon of the peanut oil,

Carefully add the scallops and shrimp in a single layer. Cook undisturbed 1 minute, letting the scallops begin to sear. Sprinkle on 1/4 teaspoon of the salt and stir-fry for 30 seconds or until the scallops and shrimp are opaque but not cooked through. Transfer the seafood to a plate.

Add the remaining 1 tablespoon peanut oil to the wok and add the ginger and cook for 30 seconds, then add the bok choy, garlic, ¼ teaspoon salt, and the chili flakes. Stir-fry, adjusting the heat to prevent scorching until the bok choy begins to soften, 2 minutes. Turn the heat to low and cover the pan. Cook the bok choy for about 5 minutes. Tuen the bok choy over and cook for another 2-4 minutes until very soft. Remove the cover.

Stir the oyster sauce mixture to recombine and add to the skillet, Stir-fry the bok choy for one minute, and place two bok choy halves in each of two serving bowls. Return the seafood to the pan and stir-fry until they are fully cooked and coated in the sauce for about 2 minutes. Evenly divide the seafood over the bok choy in each bowl. Sprinkle each with minced scallions and serve with rice if desired.


Roasted Porterhouse Pork Chops

2-3 servings

Ingredients

2 Berkshire Porterhouse (Double) Bone-In Pork Chops
4 teaspoons pork seasoning/rub (If you don’t have this in your pantry, see recipe below.)
Kosher salt and cracked black pepper if your seasoning doesn’t contain these
Olive oil

Directions

Sprinkle one teaspoon of pork seasoning on each side of the pork chops. Rub it into the meat and refrigerate the chops for several hours.
Preheat oven to 400 F. Oil a baking dish just large enough to hold the chops. Drizzle with olive oil.
Place the baking pan in the oven and roast for about 40 minutes, turning the chops over after 20 minutes. A meat thermometer should read 140 F.
Remove from the oven and let the chops rest for 10 minutes.

 

Pork Seasoning

Combine 1 teaspoon of each in a jar and mix well.
Salt, garlic powder, white pepper, onion powder, ginger, and natural hickory smoke flavor,

 


Roasted Sweet Potatoes And Pears

Ingredients

2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into eighths
2 pears, Peeled, cored, and cut into eights
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
2 tablespoons butter

1 1/9 Pumpkin Pie spice or
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Oil a 9- inch by 13-inch baking dish.
In a large bowl, toss sweet potatoes with vinegar, seasoning, and salt and pepper to taste. Spread into a single layer in the prepared pan. Dot with the butter.

Bake 20 minutes. Add the peas and stir the mixture. Bake 20 minutes more. Serve with the pork.

Add a green vegetable to round out the menu. I made Swiss Chard. Here is my recipe

 


I used fresh pineapple instead of canned because my market had a buy one, get one promotion on cubed fresh pineapple last week. I put the pineapple in my processor and pulsed it until it was the consistency of crushed pineapple. Don’t over-process or you will have juice. The fresh pineapple worked just fine. This very moist cake is good for breakfast, as is, or you may serve it for dessert with sweetened whipped cream,

Ingredients

1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup sour cream or yogurt
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
3 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups crushed pineapple with juice

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and thoroughly grease a bundt pan.

In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, sour cream, and sugar.

Add eggs and vanilla and whisk until smooth.

Whisk in baking powder, baking soda, and salt until completely combined.

Whisk in flour until just incorporated. Slowly stir in the crushed pineapple with a spatula.

Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake for 45-50 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean when inserted into the center of the cake.

Let cake cool to room temperature. Run a thin spatula or knife about the outside of the pan and around the tube. Turn the cake over onto a serving plate.


If you do not have an air fryer use the broiler. You may need a few more minutes for cooking depending on how well you like your fish cooked. Salmon and swordfish also work in this recipe.

Air Fryer Tuna Kabobs

Sauce
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Kabobs
2 fresh tuna fillets, about 6 oz each cut into 1-inch cubes
1 red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 medium zucchini, cut into 1-inch cubes
½ red onion, cut into 1-inch cubes
Bamboo sticks soaked in hot water or metal skewers that fit your fryer
4 oz cooked thin spaghetti

Directions

 


Combine the sauce ingredients in a mixing bowl and set aside.
Thread the tuna on two long skewers. Thread the vegetables on 4 skewers, alternating the vegetables. Place the skewers on a platter and brush with some of the sauce. Let the skewers rest at room temperature for 15 minutes.
Preheat your air fryer to 350 degrees F and heat for 5 minutes.
Place the prepared skewers into the air fryer basket for 4 minutes. Brush with the sauce and turn the kabobs over. Brush that side with sauce. Cook for 4 to 6 minutes more depending on how well cooked you like your fish.
spread the cooked spaghetti on a platter. Place the kabobs on top of the spaghetti and pour the remaining sauce over the kabobs. Swerve immediately.


Strawberry Tiramisu

Ingredients

30 whole  ladyfingers
8 oz mascarpone cheese
2 cups cold  heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ cup powdered sugar
½ cup orange juice
3 cups fresh strawberries, sliced

Directions

In a large mixing bowl beat heavy cream until soft peaks form.

Add in the mascarpone cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract and beat on medium speed until stiff, set aside.

Separate the ladyfingers.

Line half of the ladyfingers in a single layer, in the bottom of a 9×13 baking dish.

Brush the ladyfingers with half of the orange juice.

Spread half of the mascarpone mixture over the ladyfingers and layer with half of the sliced strawberries.

Repeat the steps again.

Place in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight. Cut into 8 squares for serving.

 


Flank Steak Roulade

Ingredients

1½-2pound flank steak
1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1 teaspoon black pepper, divided
2 jarred roasted red peppers, diced
1 medium green zucchini, shredded
1 cup shredded mozzarella
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 garlic clove, grated
2 tablespoons olive oil

Directions

Preheat oven to 400°F.
Squeeze zucchini in a kitchen towel to rid it of excess liquid.
Combine the zucchini, roasted red peppers, and mozzarella in a mixing bowl. Add the Italian seasoning and garlic.
Butterfly the flank steak.Season with half the salt and pepper.
Spread the vegetable mixture evenly over the seasoned flank steak.
Roll the flank steak and tie with butcher twine. Season the outside of the roulade with the remaining salt and pepper.

Heat a large ovenproof saute pan over high heat until very hot. Add oil and sear all of the sides of the roulade until golden brown.

Place the pan in the oven and cook until the internal temperature reaches 120°F for medium-rare (approximately 18-20 minutes). Let the roulade rest for 20 minutes after removing it from the oven and the residual heat will raise the temperature of the meat to 125-130°F.
Slice and remove twine before serving.

Roasted Beet Ane Pear Salad

Ingredients

2 large beets, scrubbed clean with a vegetable brush
A small drizzle of olive oil, for roasting the beets
1 ripe red pear, chopped into ½ inch pieces
¼ cup walnuts, toasted
¼ cup blue cheese, crumbled (or more)
A few handfuls of salad greens of your choice

Dressing
2 tablespoons oil
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon of honey
Sea salt and fresh black pepper

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Roast the beets by drizzling them with a bit of olive oil, some salt, and pepper, and wrapping them in foil. Depending on the size and freshness of your beets, they should take from 40 minutes to 1 hour to roast in the oven. Check occasionally, when they are fork-tender they are done. Set them aside to cool. As soon as they’re cool enough to touch, run them under the faucet and slide off the skins with your hands. Chop into roughly ½ inch cubes and set them aside to cool completely. (To save time, I suggest doing this up to one day ahead of time and popping them in the fridge until you’re ready to assemble the salad).
Assemble all salad ingredients on a plate and mix with the dressing.

Green Beans with Dill Vinaigrette

Ingredients

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
1 pound green beans

Directions

Stir together the vinegar, mustard, and salt in a small bowl until the ingredients are combined and the salt has dissolved. Whisking constantly, slowly pour in the oil and continue to whisk until emulsified. Gently stir in chopped dill and set aside.
Steam green beans until tender. Drain. Arrange green beans in a serving dish and season with a little bit of salt. Pour the dill dressing over the green beans. Mix well and leave at room temperature until serving time.


PanSeared Filet Mignon and Crabmeat Stuffed Lobster Tails

For the steak
2 Filet Mignons, 1 inch thick
1 tablespoon steak seasoning
2 tablespoons butter

For the lobster
2 frozen lobster tails, 5 ounces each
1/2 cup dry white wine
Lemon wedges

Crabmeat Stuffing:
2 tablespoons butter, salted
2 tablespoons minced onion
1/4 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 cup panko crumbs
1/2 cup jumbo lump crabmeat, picked over for shells and cartilage
Pinch salt
Freshly ground white pepper, to taste
1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
2 teaspoons olive oil

Directions

Thaw lobster 1 to 2 days in the refrigerator or place in a clean bowl under cool running water until completely thawed.

To make stuffing:
Melt butter in a small saucepan or saute pan. Add onion and garlic and cook until onion is translucent. Do not brown. Fold in panko, crabmeat, salt, white pepper, lemon zest, and olive oil.

Heat oven to 450 degrees F.

Split top side of lobster shell down the center with scissors, keeping tail fan intact. Pull shell open; lift tail meat, leaving it attached at the end, and lay over top of the shell, “piggyback” style. Make a cut down the center of the meat 1/4-inch deep. Season with salt and pepper.

Pour wine into a small baking dish. Place lobster tails in the dish. Spoon stuffing over top of the meat. Bake 10 to 12 minutes in the center of the oven, until the meat, turns from translucent to opaque (white).

Remove from the oven and drizzle pan juices lightly over the lobster. Serve with lemon wedges

To cook the steaks

Season the steaks with steak seasoning, rubbing the spices into the steaks. Let rest until room temperature.
Heat a small ovenproof skillet and add the butter.
Sear filets for 2 minutes on each side, until you see a golden-brown crust form.
Place the full skillet with filets onto the center oven rack to finish cooking. Place the skillet in the oven at the same time you put the lobster in the oven.

The best temperature for a filet mignon is, generally, medium-rare, which will give them a slight pinkness in the center. To cook to this temperature, your steaks should read 130-degrees with a meat thermometer before removing them from the oven. Shoot for 120-degrees for rare and 140-degrees for medium. After they’ve finished cooking, place the steaks on a plate and cover loosely with foil for about 10 minutes to rest.

Twice-Baked Potatoes

Directions

1 large russet potato (about 10 to 12 ounces each)

Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/4 cup sour cream

2 tablespoons heavy cream

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 scallion, minced

Paprika, for sprinkling

Directions

Bake the potato early in the day. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Prick the potatoes all over with a fork. Brush lightly with the oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast on a sheet tray until tender, 50 minutes to 1 hour. Cool enough to handle.

Slice the potatoes lengthwise and scoop the potato flesh into a medium bowl, leaving a 1/4-inch shell all around. Season the insides of the potato shells lightly with salt and pepper. To the bowl with the potato, add the sour cream, half-and-half, and butter and mix until almost smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the scallion. Mound into the potato shells. Place on a baking sheet. Refrigerate if not baking right away,

Remove from the refrigerator about 30 minutes before baking. Place in the oven at the same temperature set for the steak and lobster ten minutes before the steak and lobster.

Bake until heated through, about 20 minutes. Sprinkle with paprika and serve.

Spinach Salad with Cherries, Walnuts And Blue Cheese

Spinach Salad
¼ small red onion, sliced thinly and soaked in water for 10 minutes, and drained.
8 cups clean spinach leaves
½ cup dried cherries
¾ cup crumbled blue cheese
¾ cup roughly chopped toasted walnuts

Vinaigrette Dressing
3 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

Salad
Pre-heat oven to 350F
Spread walnuts on a baking sheet and place in the oven for 6 minutes. Stir around and roast for another 3-4 minutes ensuring they don’t overcook. Let cool. This step can be done earlier in the day.

Combine the spinach, onion, and cherries n a large bowl and toss to combine.

Vinaigrette Dressing
Combine all ingredients and whisk to combine.
Taste and add salt and pepper until it’s to your liking.
Add dressing to salad and toss to coat, gently add the cheese and walnuts and serve.

 


Ingredients

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 lb green beans, trimmed and cut into 2-inch lengths
1 lb short pasta
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus additional for drizzling
4 cloves garlic, sliced
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Zest and juice of 3 lemons
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup grated Pecorino-Romano, plus more for serving
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
½ lb shrimp peeled, deveined, and cut in half crosswise

Directions

Prepare a bowl of ice water and set it aside. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the green beans and cook until bright green and just barely cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes. Use a spider or strainer to transfer the green beans to the ice bath and let cool completely before draining. Keep the water boiling in the pot.

Add the pasta to the same pot of boiling water. Let cook to al dente, about 3 minutes less than the package instructions. Save ½ cup pasta water. Drain the pasta.

Heat the olive oil in the pot over medium-high heat. Cook the garlic and red pepper flakes until fragrant but not browned, about 1 minute, then add the lemon zest, lemon juice, and pasta water.

Add the butter and shrimp. Stir for 2 minutes. Add drained pasta and blanched green beans, and cook, tossing, until well combined about 3 minutes more. Turn off the heat and gradually stir in the cheese, tossing constantly. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Divide pasta among serving bowls and garnish with parsley, more cheese, and a drizzle of olive oil.


Chinese Chicken Stock

Ingredients

3-4 lb chicken
10 cups water (cold)
3 slices​ fresh ginger
2​ scallions (cut into 1-inch pieces)
1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
Salt and black (to taste)

Directions

Place the chicken in a large pot with 10 cups of water (or enough to cover).
Add the ginger, green onion, rice wine, or sherry. Bring to a boil over medium heat, occasionally skimming off the foam that rises to the top.
Add salt to taste and black pepper if desired.
Cover, reduce the heat, and simmer for 2 hours. Strain the broth and use as called for in recipes. Shred one cooked chicken breast for the soup recipe below. Use the remainder of the meat for other recipes.

Chinese Chicken Noodle Soup

Ingredients

8 cups Chinese chicken broth
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon ginger, minced
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons sherry or Chinese rice wine
2 teaspoons sesame oil
4 oz Asian curly noodles, cut into smaller pieces
3 medium carrots, thinly sliced
2 celery stalks, thinly sliced
6 denied shiitake mushrooms, soaked
1 medium onion, sliced
8 oz can water chestnuts, drained
Chilies, hot sauce, chili paste, optional

Add broth ingredients to a large saucepan. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes
to have ingredients infuse flavors.

Cook noodles according to the package.

Cut vegetables as needed.

Add carrots to the broth and simmer for 2 min. and remove but keep warm. Add
chicken and bok choy and cook for 2-3 min. until bok choy is tender.

Divide the broth between four bowls, add the noodles, carrots, chicken, and
bok choy in sections around the bowl and the green onions scattered in the
middle or the side.

Serve with hot sauce, optional.

Ginger Pork in Lettuce Leaves

6 servings

Ingredients

3/4 pound ground pork
1 red bell pepper, finely diced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tablespoon minced peeled ginger
1 tablespoon Thai sweet chile sauce
1 tablespoon Asian fish sauce
2 teaspoons Asian sesame oil
1 tablespoon peanut oil
One 8-ounce can water chestnuts, drained and diced
2 scallions, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
24 lettuce leaves

Directions

In a medium bowl, combine the ground pork with bell pepper, garlic, ginger, chile sauce, fish sauce, and sesame oil l.

In a large skillet or wok, heat the peanut oil until shimmering. Add the pork mixture and stir-fry over high heat, breaking it up, until it is cooked through and starting to brown, about 8 minutes. Stir in the water chestnuts, scallions, oyster sauce, and cilantro and remove from the heat.

Spoon the pork into bowls. Stack the lettuce leaves on plates. To eat, spoon the pork onto the lettuce leaves, roll up,


Codfish Cakes with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

Makes 12 medium cakes

2 russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 lb cod fillets or any white fish fillets you like
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup Greek yogurt
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 egg, beaten
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup plain panko crumbs
1 large clove of garlic, grated
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup olive oil, divided
Kale sauteed with garlic
Roasted Red Pepper Sauce, see below

Directions

Cook the potatoes in boiling salted water. Drain and mash.

Put about an inch of water in the bottom of the large nonstick skillet and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Season fish with 1/4 teaspoon of the salt and add it to the pan. Cover the pan and simmer fish over low heat until just done 6 to 8 minutes.

Remove Fish from the pan with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Pour out the water and dry the pan.

Allow fish to cool slightly, about 5 minutes, and pat completely dry. Place in a mixing bowl and flake the fish with a fork. Add mashed potatoes.  yogurt, parsley, egg, Italian seasoning, lemon juice, garlic, pepper, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Stir to combine.

Shape mixture into 12 (¼ cup) round cakes. I prefer smaller portions but if you would like larger cakes use a ⅓ or ½ cup measure. Freeze extra cakes for another meal. They heat well in a hot oven.

Coat cakes in panko. If you have time refrigerate cakes up to 4 hours before cooking. Chilling for a while actually helps them hold together and keep their shape.

Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in the skillet over medium heat. Add 6 cakes and cook until brown and crisp, 2 to 3 minutes. Turn cakes, and cook until golden brown on the other side, 2 to 3 minutes longer. drain on paper towels. Repeat with the remaining cakes and oil. Serve hot with roasted red pepper sauce and sauteed kale.

Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

In a blender, puree 1/2 cup roasted red bell pepper (jarred is fine) with 1 clove garlic, 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Add 1/4 cup olive oil and blend.

For the kale

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 garlic clove, peeled, sliced
2 bunches kale, washed, stalks removed, roughly sliced, blanched for 2-3 minutes in salted water, drained
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Heat the oil in a deep skillet over medium heat and add the garlic. Stir-fry for one minute, then add the kale and stir-fry for 4-5 minutes, or until tender. Add the lemon juice and season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper.



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