Monday, May 30, 2011

Greek Steak Pitas with Dill Sauce

I am not the best at walking into the grocery store and just deciding then and there what I am going to make for dinner. Unless I am making pizza or pasta I usually need a recipe and more importantly a grocery list. Friday when I entered Trader Joes for groceries I barely had a game plan and there was definitely no shopping list but somehow we ended up with a great dinner.

Again, sorry for the bad picture. I get my new camera tomorrow so no more phone photos!
Greek Steak Pitas with Dill Sauce
print recipe

1 pound flank steak
1/2 cup lemon juice- about 4 lemons
1 tsp oregano
salt and pepper
1 green pepper, sliced
1 onion, sliced
pita bread

Dill Sauce:
1/2 cup fat free plain yogurt
2 tsp dill
1 clove garlic, minced
salt and pepper

Preheat broiler.

Place the flank steak in a large plastic bag. Pour the lemon juice on top and marinate for 10 minutes. Remove steak from bag and discard the sauce. Place steak on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Season with oregano, salt and pepper. Cook the steak for 15 minutes. Remove steak from the heat and let sit for 5 minutes before slicing.

While steak is cooking, saute the sliced green pepper and onion over medium-high heat in a skillet coated with a little olive oil. Saute for about 5 minutes or until vegetables are soft and starting to brown. 

In a small bowl combine all of the dill sauce ingredients. To assemble, cut the pita bread in half, spoon in a little dill sauce, add the sliced steak and vegetables.

** We served this with our favorite Greek salad. I highly recommend this salad recipe, it's delicious!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Wild Rice, Asparagus, and Goat Cheese Frittata

The below frittata recipe is a favorite of mine. I usually make this for lunch and it lasts me all week but it would also be a perfect dish to serve company for brunch. I love that you can adjust the ingredients depending on what you already have in your refrigerator or based on what is in season at the grocery store or farmers market.

Wild Rice, Asparagus, and Goat Cheese Frittata
** adapted from Cooking Light
print recipe

Serves 4
Prep/Cook Time: 20 minutes

2 T. water
salt and pepper
5 large eggs
4 large egg whites
1 cup asparagus, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/2 cup halved grape tomatoes
1/2 cup cooked wild rice (or brown rice)
1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh basil
2 tsp grated lemon rind
1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese

Preheat broiler.

Combine water, dash of salt and pepper, eggs and egg whites; set aside.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add asparagus and garlic and saute for 2 minutes. Add onions and saute another minute or until asparagus is crisp tender. Add tomatoes, rice, basil, and lemon rind; cook 1 minute. Reduce heat to medium and pat mixture into an even layer in pan; sprinkle with cheese. Pour egg mixture over rice mixture and cook 4 minutes or until almost set.

Wrap handle of skillet with foil and broil for 4 minutes or until golden brown and set.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Pasta with Asparagus, Pancetta, and Pine Nuts

If you are a regular reader of this blog you have probably picked up on the fact that I love Cooking Light recipes. I subscribed to the magazine for years and would clip out recipes and put them in a big binder. Over the years my binder multiplied into numerous binders. Now, in an effort to cut down on paper, I no longer have a subscription and instead check out the Cooking Light website regularly. Yes, I know, I am so eco-friendly :)

The below recipe is yet another Cooking Light success. I was anxious to see how it would turn out, anytime there isn't much of a sauce I get a little nervous, but it was great. This is a perfect dish for this time of year because asparagus is in season and super cheap at the grocery store and farmers market. And let's be honest, anything with Pancetta, aka Italy's version of bacon, is going to taste good!

Picture taken from Cooking Light- my camera is broken and the phone picture didn't turn out

Pasta with Asparagus, Pancetta, and Pine Nuts
** adapted from Cooking Light
print recipe

Serves 2-4
Prep/Cook Time: 30 minutes

8 ounces cavatappi pasta (thick spiral pasta)
1 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut diagonally into 1 1/2 in. pieces
1 garlic clove, minced
3 T. pine nuts
2 ounces pancetta, diced
1 lemon
2 tsp olive oil
salt and pepper
1/4 c. shredded Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400.

Cook pasta according to directions, omitting the salt and oil; add asparagus to pasta water during last 3 minutes of cooking. Drain.

Meanwhile, arrange pine nuts in a single layer in a small baking dish. Bake at 400 for 3-5 minutes or until golden brown, stirring occasionally. Once browned remove from pan and set aside.

Increase oven temperature to 475. Arrange pancetta in baking dish and bake for 6-8 minutes or until crisp. Make sure to keep an eye on the pancetta so it doesn't burn. Skim out fat and remove the pancetta to a small bowl lined with a paper towel to soak up some of the fat.

Combine juice of the lemon, olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle over pasta mixture; toss well to coat. Sprinkle with pine nuts, pancetta, and cheese.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Chicken, Pear and Blue Cheese Pizza

Recently Brady traveled to San Francisco for work and had a chicken and pear pizza at his hotel. I thought this sounded like a great combination and wanted to find a similar recipe to recreate. While the below pizza wasn't exactly like the one Brady had, we thought that it was awesome. I loved the combination of the sweet pear and salty blue cheese. This pizza was incredibly easy to throw together and can be made in the time it takes for you to wait for delivery.

Chicken, Pear and Blue Cheese Pizza
*** adapted from Prevention RD

Serves: 2-3
Prep/Cook Time: 25 minutes

Pizza dough- I recommend Trader Joes Wheat or Pillsbury
1 tsp olive oil
1 cup cooked chicken
1 medium pear, sliced
1 cup shredded mozzarella
1/3 cup crumbled blue cheese
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1 cup arugula

Preheat oven to recommended temperature for the dough you are using.

Roll out dough on a pizza pan that has been sprayed with PAM. Spoon 1 tsp olive oil on the dough and spread over the dough.  Bake the dough for 4 minutes.

Meanwhile, simmer the balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan over medium heat until thickened and reduced by half, about 10 minutes.

Remove pizza dough from the oven and sprinkle with 1/2 cup mozzarella, chicken, pear, blue cheese and then top with the remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella. Bake an additional 10-12 minutes. Time may need to be adjusted depending on the brand of dough that you use. Just keep an eye on the pizza. The crust should be slightly brown and the cheese bubbly.

Remove the pizza from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with arugula and drizzle with the reduced balsamic vinegar.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Le pain, le fromage, les olives et vin , j'aime la France!

I just got home from an incredible ten day trip to France with my mom. We spent 2 1/2 days in Paris (not nearly enough time), 4 days in Provence in the small town of St. Remy, and then 3 days on the French Rivera in St. Paul de Vence. I knew that I would love France but I had no idea how amazed I would be by the beauty and the charm that can be found throughout the country. It seemed like every time we turned a corner we were more and more in awe of a winding cobblestone street, ancient Roman ruins, or a view of the Mediterranean sea. I'm not going to lie, we also had moments that weren't quite so amazing, being lost in Aix-en-Provence, almost getting carsick on the worlds steepest drive up to the mountain top village of Eze, and my mom almost burning down Sacre-Coeur Basilica in Paris. But for the most part, the trip was perfect!

When we weren't touring the beautiful towns throughout Provence and the French Rivera, we were busy eating wonderful French and Italian food. At first I felt incredibly guilty eating Italian food, I kept thinking "we are in France, you can't order pizza in France!" But apparently because we were in the south of France the Italian influence is huge and everyone eats Italian. Needless to say, I quickly got over the guilt and enjoyed my pasta and pizza! As well as croissants, pastries, cheese and wine :)

Here are some photos of the great food we had while in France. Bon appetit!

Tarte Fraîches Berry (Fresh Berry Tart)
Soupe de poisson (Fish Soup- to eat, you rub garlic on the bread, add a little aoili and cheese and drop in the soup)

Le fromage
Crumble aux pommes (Apple crumble)
Salade fromage de chèvre avec du lardon et du pain grillé et fig confit (Salad with bacon and toasts with goat cheese and fig confit)
La viande bovine avec les abricots et olives (Beef with apricots and olives)
Les crevettes avec risotto (Prawns with risotto)

Pain au Chocolat (Croissant with chocolate)

Fromage pizza en Italie (Cheese pizza in Italy- we crossed over into Italy one day!)

If anyone is considering a trip to France feel free to email me, I have lots of recommendations for towns to visit and places to stay along the way!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Thai Chicken Pizza

The Classic Cup is one of my families favorite restaurants in Kansas City. My mom and I absolutely love their Thai Chicken Pizza. I like just about anything with Thai flavors but Thai pizza, that's pretty hard to beat! Brady and I made our own Thai Chicken Pizza this past Sunday and it was delicious. I thought it tasted just like the Thai pizza at the Classic Cup.

The ingredient list below might look long, there are a lot of sauce ingredients, but if you cook Asian food occasionally you will most likely already have the majority of the ingredients. The only thing that I didn't have was the Oyster Sauce. The peanut sauce on this pizza is amazing though and worth buying a few extra ingredients if you don't have them on hand already. I honestly could have eaten the sauce with the spoon and it definitely took some restraint for us to not polish off the entire pizza in one sitting!

Thai Chicken Pizza before baking.
Pizza garnished after baking.

Thai Chicken Pizza
** adapted from
print recipe

Serves 3-4
Prep/Cook Time: 30 minutes

Sauce Ingredients
1/2 cup peanut butter (i used Natural Smooth PB)
1/2 cup hoisin sauce
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
2 garlic cloves minced
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon sriracha (or hot chili sauce)
1 Tablespoon oyster sauce
1 Tablespoon fish sauce
1/2 cup boiling water (may not need this if you use Natural PB)

Pizza Toppings
pizza dough- I recommend Pillsbury or Trader Joes 
2 chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 red pepper, diced
2 carrots, shredded or diced
1/2 c. mung beans
3-4 green onions, sliced
1 c. Monterey Jack or Mozzarella cheese
handful cilantro
1 lime, cut into wedges

Combine all sauce ingredients except the boiling water in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium high heat and stir until smooth. If the sauce is too thick add in boiling water until desired consistency is reached.

Heat a small amount of oil in a large skillet and cook the chicken pieces.  Meanwhile prepare the vegetables, red pepper through green onions.

Spray a large baking sheet or pizza pan with PAM. Spread out the pizza dough. Cover the pizza with sauce (you probably wont need all of the sauce), chicken, vegetables and cheese. Bake the pizza according to your dough directions, about 15 minutes for most pizza dough varieties. Garnish pizza with cilantro and serve with a lime wedge.