Healthy Mediterranean Cooking at Home

Category Archives: Cheese

16 servings

Ingredients

For the crust:
Nonstick cooking spray
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 tablespoon sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

For the cheese filling:
16 ounces cream cheese, such as Philadelphia, at room temperature
¼ cup mascarpone cheese at room temperature
1 cup whole milk
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups whole-milk ricotta cheese (12 ounces)
1/2 cup Italian limoncello, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 large eggs, at room temperature

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Position a rack in the center of the oven. Spray a 9 x13 x 2-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.

For the crust, combine the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and butter in a medium bowl and mix until moistened. Press the mixture evenly on the bottom of the prepared pan/ Bake for 10 minutes and set aside to cool.

For the filling, place the cream cheese mascarpone, and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed for 5 minutes, until light and fluffy. Add the ricotta and beat for another minute, scraping down the bowl.

With the mixer on low, add the limoncello, vanilla, and milk and beat for one minute. With the mixer on medium-low, add the eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. Scrape down the bowl and mix until the batter is smooth. Pour over the crust.

Place the baking dish on a cookie sheet.
Bake for 60-70 minutes, until almost set in the center and lightly brown in spots on the top of the cake.

Cool to room temperature. Cover the dish with foil and refrigerate overnight. Cut into 16 pieces to serve.


Tip for crispy oven fried chicken:
Cover a cookie sheet with foil and spread 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil over the foil. Place the pan in the oven and leave it there while the oven preheats to your recipe’s oven temperature.

Chicken
2 large boneless chicken breasts, sliced in half to form 4 breats
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 egg
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 ½ cups panko bread crumbs
1 tablespoon dried Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon garlic powder
Salt and Pepper
Vegetable oil

Topping
2 medium tomatoes, cut into 8 slices
9 mozzarella balls {they about 1-inch in size}flattened slightly

Directions

Place the prepared cookie sheet in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

In 3 separate shallow bowls: pales the flour, ½ teaspoon of salt, and ½ teaspoon of black pepper in one bowl. In the second beat the egg with the mayonnaise and in the third place the panko, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, and ½ teaspoon salt.

Place one chicken breast in the flour, then the egg, and finally the panko/ Repeat with the remaining chicken.

With potholders, take the pan out of the oven and place the breaded chicken on the hot pan. Return the pan to the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Turn the chicken over and bake for 15 minutes.

Remove the pawn from the oven and place 2 tomato slices on top of each breast, followed by 3 mozzarella balls on each piece of chicken. Return the pan to the oven and bake until the cheese melts about 5 minutes.

Serve with a green vegetable. I baked asparagus in the oven along with the chicken.

 


Looking for something different for Meatless Mondays, give this dish a try.

Easy Mac & Cheese

Ingredients

2 cups elbow macaroni
Salt
3/4 cup milk
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup shredded Mexican Blended Cheese plus ¼ cup
¼ teaspoon yellow mustard powder
¼ cup panko crumbs
4 ounces processed Velveeta cheese, diced
4 roasted and peeled poblano peppers

Directions

To roast and peel the poblanos, broil the peppers until charred, then transfer them to a resealable plastic bag, seal the bag and let them sit for about 20 minutes. Remove them from the bag and peel off the skins. Remove the seeds. Cut one long side of the pepper so it lays flat.

Cook the pasta in boiling salted water for 5 minutes. Drain. In the same pot over low heat, melt the cheeses in the milk, butter, and mustard until smooth. Stir in the drained macaroni.

Heat oven to 350ºF.

 

Spread the peppers in a baking dish, so they lay flat. Spoon about ½ cup of macaroni down the center of each pepper. Fold the sides of the peppers up onto the filling. Sprinkle about 1 tablespoon of cheese on the topos each pepper, followed by 1 tablespoon of panko crumbs on each.

Bake 15 minutes or until the peppers are heated through.

If you don’t use all the macaroni and cheese in the peppers, you can reheat it as a side dish for another dinner..

Serve this dish with a green salad or a vegetable.

 


Chicken Cordon Bleu

2 servings

Ingredients

4 slicesSwiss, Gruyère or Italian Fontina cheese or a combination
2 slices deli ham
2 teaspoons
Freshly ground pepper to taste
2 boneless, skinless chicken breast cutlets
1 egg
¼ cup All-purpose flour
1/2 cup plain dry breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons butter

Directions

Preheat oven to 425°F.
Pound chicken cutlets thin.
Place a slice of cheese, a folded slice of ham, and another slice of cheese on one half of the cutlet, fold the other side of the cutlet over the filling.
Press the edges firmly together to seal. Repeat with the remaining chicken breasts and filling.
Lightly beat egg with a teaspoon of water in a medium bowl. Place breadcrumbs and flour in separate shallow dishes. Hold each chicken breast half together and dip in flour, egg then dredge in breadcrumbs. (Discard leftovers.)
Heat oil in an ovenproof nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken breasts; cook until browned on one side, about 2 minutes. Place the chicken, browned side up, on the prepared baking sheet. Bake, until the chicken is no longer pink in the center or until an instant-read thermometer, registers 165°F, about 20 minutes.

Broccoli with Quick Lemon Sauce

Ingredients For two servings

1 large stalk of raw broccoli florets, rinsed well
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and Pepper to taste
Sauce
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 garlic clove, grated
4 tablespoons room temperature butter
Freshly ground pepper to taste

Directions

For the sauce
Place the sauce ingredients in a small microwave bowl. Heat the sauce on high until the butter melts. About 2 minutes. Stir well and set aside.
For the broccoli
Preheat oven to 425 F.
Cut the stalk into 4 pieces. Place in a plastic bag with the oil and seasonings.
Place the broccoli on a foil-lined sheet pan large enough to hold them all in a single. Bake until tender for about 15 minutes, Place the broccoli on a serving plate and pour the lemon sauce over the broccoli.

Oven Roasted Potato Wedges

2 servings

Ingredients
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon salt
1 large russet potato, scrubbed and cut into eighths

Directions

Preheat an oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
Place olive oil, onion powder, garlic powder, pepper, salt, and potatoes into a resealable plastic bag. Seal the bag, then shake to coat the potatoes with the seasoning. Spread the potatoes over a baking sheet.

Bake in the preheated oven until the potatoes are easily pierced with a fork, about 25 minutes.


Sausage Tomato Sauce

Ingredients

1 lb hot or sweet Italian sausage
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1-1/2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
½ teaspoon red chili flakes
3 tablespoons tomato paste
3 containers (2- 26 and 1-14 oz) chopped Italian tomatoes
1 tomato container filled with water

Directions

Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven and brown the sausage. Remove the sausage to a plate. Add the onion to the pan and site until tender about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, seasoning, and tomato paste. Stir and cook for 2 minutes, Add the tomatoes and water. Bring to a low boil, reduce the heat, and add the sausage to the sauce. Partially clever the pot and simmer the sauce until thickened for about 2 hours. Remove the sausage to a serving bowl.

Spaghetti with Ricotta Cheese

Ingredients

1 lb whole grain spaghetti
Italian Sausage Sauce, recipe above
1 cup ricotta cheese, warmed in the microwave
1 cup grated parmesan ch

For the pasta
Heat a large pit of salted water to boiling, add the spaghetti, and cook until al dente, according to the package instructions. Drain Return it to the pasta pan and add 2 cups of tomato sauce, stir gently, and add the Parmesan cheese. Stir again. Place the pasta in a pasta serving bowl. Drop tablespoons of warm ricotta cheese on top. Serve the sausage on the side.

Italian Romaine Lettuce Salad

Ingredients

1 small head of Romaine lettuce, washed and dried
1 small red onion, cut into ring
Italian black olives to taste

Italian Dressing

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Directions

Tear the lettuce leaves into small pieces.
Place the greens, olives, and onion in a medium salad bowl.
In a jar, combine the dressing ingredients. Shake well and pour over the greens. Toss and serve.



2 servings

Ingredients

12 oz boneless ribeye steak or tour favorite steak
Kosher salt and black pepper
1 tablespoon butter
3 cups romaine lettuce
1/ 2 cup diced tomatoes
½ cup thinly sliced cucumber
¼ cup thinly sliced radish
¼ cup diced red onion
1/3 medium avocado, sliced or diced
1/2 cup blue cheese
Ranch Dressing

Directions

Dry the steak with paper towels. Heat a medium skillet until very hot. Add the steak and cook without moving for three minutes. Turn the steak over and season both sides with salt and pepper. Top with the butter,

Cook the steak until it reaches an internal temperature of 120 to 125°F (49 to 52ºC) for medium-rare, about 3 to 5 minutes.

Transfer the steak to a cutting board and rest for 10 minutes. Slice the steak into ¼-inch thick pieces. Cut smaller if desired.

Arrange all the salad ingredients, except the avocado, in two large individual salad bowls. Top with the sliced steak and sliced avocados. Serve with ranch dressing and warm dinner rolls.


2 servings

Ingredients

2 flounder fillets (1 pound total)
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
½ cup Italian flavored bread crumbs
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup Marinara Sauce
½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions

Preheat the oven to 425°F.

In a baking dish large enough to just fit the flounder spread the marinara sauce over the button of the dish. Place the fish in the dish and season the fish fillets with salt and pepper.

Mix the Parmesan with the bread crumbs, and olive oil and sprinkle over the fillets. Press down on the breading to be sure it coats the fish.

Bake for 15 minutes, or until the fish is cooked and the topping is golden.
Top each fillet with ¼ cup shredded mozzarella cheese.
Return to the oven and bake until the sauce is hot and the cheese melts.

Serve With cooked spaghetti and a green vegetable.

 


Broccoli-Cheddar Mac & Cheese

2 servings

Ingredients

6 ounces penne pasta {whole wheat}
1 medium stalk of fresh broccoli, cut into small florets {about 10-12 oz]
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons panko breadcrumbs

Directions

Preheat oven to 425°F.

Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook according to package directions, adding broccoli for the last minute of cooking. Drain.

Wipe the pot dry and place over medium-low heat. Add butter and swirl until melted. Sprinkle flour over the butter; whisk until smooth. Slowly add milk, salt, and smoked paprika; cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture bubbles and thickens about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in Cheddar cheese. Add the drained pasta and broccoli, stirring to coat well.
Combine the panko and Parmesan cheese.

Transfer the mixture to an 8–inch baking dish and sprinkle with panko mixture. Bake15 minutes.

Serve with a tomato salad.


Greek Spinach Frittata

Ingredients

12 large eggs
¼ cup olive oil
16 oz frozen spinach defrosted, raw or canned, and drained
1 onion finely dices
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 garlic clove minced
2 plum tomatoes, cut into thin slices
½ cup crumbled feta cheese

Directions

Heat the broiler.
In a large mixing bowl beat the eggs. Add the spinach, onion, garlic, and oregano. Mix well.
Heat the oil in an omelet pan. Pour in the egg mixture and cook until set, lifting the edges and letting the eggs run under the omelet. Top the egg mixture with sliced tomatoes, and fetta cheese. Place the pan under the broiler and cook for 2-3 minutes until the top is no longer runnun\g and beginning to brown.
Serve with pita bread and Tzatziki Sauce.


Chicken And Peppers Over Pasta

Ingredients

For 2 servings. Double for 4.

4 chicken tenders, pounded this
7-8 oz mini peppers, seeded and sliced into strips
Half a sweet onion, sliced
1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1 garlic clove, minced
½ cup chopped fresh basil
Salt and pepper to taste
¼ cup flour1 cup panko crumbs
1 egg, beaten
Olive oil
1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese

Pasta
8 oz fettuccine
¼ cup butter
1/2 cup chopped parsley

Directions
Bring a large p[ot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta.
Sprinkle the chicken pieces with salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning. Dredge in flour, egg, and panko crumbs. Set aside.
Heat the 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium skillet. Add onions, peppers, garlic, and basil. Saute the mixture until tender. Remove to a bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and cook the chicken until brown on both sides. Spread the chicken with the peppers and onions, Top with the mozzarella and cover the pan, turn the heat down to low, and let cook until the cheese melts. Remove the pan from the heat.

Drain the pasta. Place the drained pasta and butter in the empty pot. Stir gently over low heat, until the pasta is coated in butter. Add the parsley. Place a portion of pasta on each of the two serving dishes. Top each with two pieces of chicken with peppers and cheese. Serve.



%d bloggers like this: