Healthy Mediterranean Cooking at Home

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This is a refreshing dinner on a hot summer day. Make the extra salmon even if you only need two servings for dinner. Leftover Salmon has many uses..Salmon

Ingredients

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh dill
1 tablespoon fresh oregano
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 lemon
4 fresh salmon fillets, about 6 oz each
½ teaspoons salt

Directions

Mix the extra virgin olive together with the black pepper, the chopped fresh dill, and fresh oregano together in a non-metallic bowl. Stir well then add in the zest and juice of the lemon.
Place the salmon fillets into the marinade and turn them to coat. Set them aside in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes and up to 3 hours.
Once the salmon has marinated, place a heavy paced frying pan or skillet over medium-high heat and allow it to get hot.
Season the salmon fillets with the salt and then place the salmon presentation side down into the pan.
Cook undisturbed for 3 minutes. Carefully flip the salmon and cook for a further 3 minutes.

Greek Salad
Serve with warmed pita bread

Dressing

1/2 cup red wine vinegar
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon sugar or sugar substitute
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tablespoon lemon juice

Salad

4 cups torn romaine lettuce
1 small bell pepper, diced
1/4 of red onion, sliced
Half English cucumber, sliced
1 medium tomato, diced
12 kalamata olives,
4 pepperoncini peppers
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

Directions

Pour all the dressing ingredients into a large jar and shake well.
Place the jar in the refrigerator for a few hours to blend the flavors.
Combine the Greek salad ingredients in a large serving bowl. Pour half of the dressing over the salad and toss. Add more dressing if desired.


Healthy Caesar Salad

Ingredients

Makes about 1/2 cup. Can easily be doubled.

Ingredients:

Dressing
1/2 small clove garlic
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon reduced-fat mayonnaise
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3/4 teaspoon anchovy paste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Salad

Half a head of Romaine lettuce, torn into small pieces and1/2 cup croutons

Directions:

Place garlic and salt in a medium bowl and mash with the back of a spoon to form a paste. Add lemon juice, mayonnaise, mustard, anchovy paste, and pepper; whisk to combine. Slowly drizzle in oil, whisking constantly. Add cheese and whisk to combine.

Chicken Piccata

Ingredients

Four 6 oz boneless, skinless cutlets (turkey, chicken, veal, pork, or fish), pounded until thin
Kosher salt
Ground pepper
1/4 cup all-purpose flour, preferably Wondra
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tablespoons white wine, or dry vermouth
1 lemon, juiced (4 tablespoons),
1 tablespoon capers

Directions

Season the chicken on both sides with salt and pepper. Lightly coat in flour. Shake off excess.

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and butter, swirl them around the pan, and add the cutlets. Turn the heat to medium and saute for 2 minutes per side. Add the wine, lemon juice, and capers, swirl them around in the pan and turn off the heat. Serve immediately.

Orecchiette Pasta

Ingredients

Hakf Pound Dried Orecchiette Pasta
2 large zucchini, sliced into thin rounds
2 cloves garlic, minced
Half a red onion sliced thin
Salt & Pepper To Taste
1/3  cup sundried tomatoes packed in oil, sliced into thin strips

Directions

Heat a large pot of salted water to a boil, and add the pasta. Cook as per package instructions until the last 4-5 minutes of cooking. Drain pasta and reserve one cup of pasta water.

In the drained pasta pot, pour 3 tablespoons of the sundried tomato oil into the pot and heat until warm. Add the zucchini and remaining ingredients. Stir and cook for three minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Return the pasta to the pot and adding water as needed to keep it moist.


Chicken Salad with Fresh Herbs and Pecans

6 servings

Ingredients

For the chicken
1 garlic clove, peeled
3-4 celery tops
Half an onion
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning or dried Italian seasoning
3 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts, about 1 ½ lb

For the salad
½ cup diced celery
½ cup diced onion
1 cup mayonnaise
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons chopped mixed fresh herbs (such as parsley and tarragon)
1/2 cup pecans, toasted and chopped

Directions

To cook the chicken

Fill a 12-inch covered saute or large saucepan pan 3/4 of the way with water and bring to a simmer.

Add the garlic, celery tops, onion half, seasoning, salt, and pepper. Return the liquid to a simmer.

Add the chicken breasts to the poaching liquid, cover, and simmer until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165 degrees F when tested with an instant-read thermometer, about 20 to 25 minutes.

Remove the chicken breasts to a plate and set them aside to cool. Save the broth for soup or gravy.

To make the salad

Combine the diced celery, diced onion, mayonnaise, mustard, and herbs in a large serving bowl and mix well. Refrigerate until the chicken is cool

When the chicken is cool enough to handle, cut it into 1/2-inch dice.

Add the chicken and the pecans to the mayonnaise mixture, and mix well. Cover and transfer the salad to the refrigerator to chill until serving time.


Scallops & Cherry Tomato Pasta

Servings:2

Ingredients

½ pound dry sea scallops, tough side muscle removed
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1-pint cherry tomatoes
1/4cup dry white wine
1 tablespoon capers, rinsed
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
¼ teaspoon ground pepper
2 oz thin spaghetti
Chopped fresh basil for garnish

Directions

Cook the pasta al dente and drain.
Pat scallops dry. Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the scallops and cook, turning once, until lightly browned on both sides, about 4 minutes total. Transfer to a plate and tent with foil to keep warm.

Add tomatoes to the pan and cook, stirring once, until wilted 2 to 3 minutes. Add wine and capers; cook, stirring, and scraping up any browned bits until the wine is reduced by half, about 1 minute. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in butter and pepper. Return the pan to low heat, add the cooked pasta. Stir gently. Divide the mixture between two pasta bowls and top with the scallops. Garnished with basil.

Asparagus with Lemon-Shallot Vinaigrette

Serves 6

Ingredients

1 bunch thin asparagus spears, tough ends trimmed
1 tablespoon olive oil
Table salt and ground black pepper

Dressing
1 large shallot, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Directions

Adjust oven rack to uppermost position and heat broiler.
Toss asparagus with oil and salt and pepper, then lay spears in a single layer on a heavy-rimmed baking sheet. Broil about 4 inches from the heating element, shaking the pan halfway through to turn spears, until asparagus is tender and lightly browned 8 to 10 minutes.

Cool the asparagus for 5 minutes and arrange them in a  serving dish.
Whisk shallot, lemon juice and zest, thyme, mustard, and olive oil in a small bowl; season to taste with salt and pepper. Drizzle over asparagus and serve immediately.

 


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.

 


2 servings-double for 4 servings

Ingredients

5 ounces spaghetti
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 shallot, minced
1 teaspoon anchovy paste
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
3 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice
8 oz salmon fillet
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
¼ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons plain panko breadcrumbs, toasted
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Direction

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large deep skillet. Add the salmon fillet and saute on both sides until cooked about 2-3 minutes per side. Remove to a plate, break into large pieces, and set aside.
Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup pasta cooking water.

Add the remaining oil, garlic, anchovy paste, crushed red pepper, and lemon juice to the skillet. Heat over medium-high heat until sizzling, about 3 minutes. Add the reserved pasta water, drained pasta, salmon, and salt. Cook, stirring, until the sauce coats the pasta, about 2 minutes. Divide between two pasta plates, top each with breadcrumbs and parsley. Serve immediately.

Leaf Lettuce Salad with Orange Vinaigrette

2 servings

Ingredients

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 orange
2 minced scallions
1/4 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
¼ teaspoon dried oregano
4 cups leaf lettuce
1 cup of green olives

Directions

In a medium salad bowl whisk together the olive oil, the orange segments and juice from the orange, scallions, salt, pepper, and oregano. Add the olives and lettuce. Mix well and serve in individual salad bowls.


For 2 servings-double for 4 servings

Ingredients

2 chicken thighs, skin and fat removed
2 medium baking potatoes, unpeeled and scrubbed
Marinade
1 garlic clove, minced
½ teaspoon Italian seasoning
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoon olive oil

Directions

In a bowl, combine the marinade ingredients. Add the chicken and refrigerate for several hours.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Cover a sheet pan with foil and coat with cooking spray.
Drain the chicken and reserve the marinade. Place the chicken at one end of the pan.
Cut the potatoes into wedges. Toss the potato wedges in the reserved marinade, then spread them out in a single layer on the sheet pan.
Bake for 20 minutes, until the potatoes are turning golden brown on the edges.
Turn the potatoes over, then bake for another 20 minutes, until golden brown all over.
Season with extra salt if desired. The chicken should register 160 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer. Divide the chicken and potatoes between two individual plates.

Spinach and Pear Salad

Ingredients

1/2 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
3/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
2 medium red pears, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 celery stalk, diced
1 (6-8ounce) package pre-washed baby spinach
1/4 of red onion, sliced
Dressing
1 tablespoon finely chopped shallot
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard
1/8 teaspoon coarse ground pepper

Directions

Place all salad ingredients in a large bowl; toss to combine.
Combine the salad dressing ingredients in a small bowl with a wire whisk until well blended. Pour dressing over salad; toss to coat. Sprinkle with toasted walnuts. Serve immediately.


Grilled Lamb Chops

2 servings

Ingredients

4 loin lamb chops

Marinade
2 tablespoons lemon juice
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon dried Greek seasoning or oregano
2 garlic cloves, sliced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Directions

Combine the marinade ingredients in a ziplock food storage bag. Give it a shake. Add the lamb, seal the bag, and marinate overnight in the refrigerator.

Preheat an outdoor or stovetop grill. Place the lamb on the grill and cook for 4-5 minutes on each side. Remove to a serving platter and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Beets With Tzatziki Sauce

Ingredients

2 large beets washed well
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Salt
1cup plain whole-milk yogurt, preferably Greek-style
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
Black pepper

To roast beets:
Trim the greens off the beets to within 1 inch and scrub the beets. Arrange the beets in a small roasting pan, add 1/8 inch water, and cover loosely with foil. Roast at 450 degrees F for 45-60 minutes, until they are tender when pierced with a knife. When cool enough to handle, peel the beets: Cut off the stem and root ends and scrape the thin layer of skin off with a knife. Quater each beet and place them in a serving bowl. To serve top with several tablespoons of tzatziki sauce.

To make the sauce
In a mixing bowl, combine garlic, lemon juice, and 1 teaspoon salt. Stir in yogurt and olive oil and dill. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper. Chill until ready to serve.

Greek Salad

Dressing

1/2 cup red wine vinegar
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon sugar or sugar substitute
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 cup of vegetable oil
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tablespoon lemon juice

Salad

4 cups torn Romaine lettuce
1/4 of red onion, sliced
Half cucumber, sliced
1 tomato, diced
12 kalamata olives
4 pepperoncini peppers
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

Directions

Pour all the dressing ingredients into a large jar and shake well.
Place the jar in the refrigerator for a few hours to blend flavors.
Combine the Greek salad ingredients in a large serving bowl. Pour half of the dressing over the salad and toss. Add more dressing if desired.


Here is an easy dinner for when you want something simple.

Grilled Ribeye With Grilled Onion

2 servings

Ingredients
2 petite ribeye steaks, 6-7 oz each, ½-inch thick
2 thick slices sweet onion, cut from the center of a large onion
Olive oil Cooking spray
Steak seasoning
Salt

Directions

Sprinkle the steaks with steak seasoning and salt. Coat the onion slices with cooking spray;
Preheat an outdoor grill or a stovetop grill pan. Oil the grill grates or the grill pan.
For outdoor cooking
Turn one of the burners off for indirect heat on the outdoor grill.
Place the onion slices on the indirect heat and turn them over when you turn the steaks.
Grill steaks until cooked to desired doneness, about 3 minutes per side for medium-rare.
For indoor cooking
Grill the steaks as directed above and place them on a serving platter. Add the onion slices to the pan can cook over low for 2-3 minutes just until they show a few grill marks.

Place the onion slices on top of the steaks and serve.

Wedge Salad

Ingredients

Salad
2 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
Ranch Dressing or Buttermilk Dressing, see below
Crumbled blue cheese to taste
1 small tomato, diced
¼ cup diced red onion

Dressing
Whisk together in a small bowl:
1/2 small shallot, finely chopped
3/4 cup sour cream
1/2 cup buttermilk,
1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar Salt and pepper to taste
Stin in 1/2 cup crumbled mild blue cheese

Directions

Combine the dressing ingredients in a jar with a screw top and shake well.
Cut 1 small head of iceberg lettuce into 4 wedges; place a wedge on two individual salad plates and spoon some of the dressing over the wedges.
Top each with bacon, diced red onion, diced tomato, and more crumbled blue cheese.



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