Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Chicken Fajitas

This is an easy and fun meal for any time of the year. I just grab the freshest vegetables, onions and some seasoning and we're all set!

Chicken Fajitas

1 1/2 lb chicken
2 or 3 bell peppers
1 large onion
2 tbsp Original Seasoning Blend
2 tbsp Olive-N-Grape Persian Lime Olive Oil
1 tbsp Olive-N-Grape Hot Chili Olive Oil

Optional for topping and serving:
2 tbsp chopped green onions
1 tbsp chopped cilantro
sour cream
6-8 warm tortillas
salsa fresca
shredded lettuce
shredded cheese

Slice the chicken, onion and peppers into thin strips or small pieces. Heat the combined oils to medium high heat and add everything. Sprinkle with the seasoning blend and cook. Stir frequently until the chicken is no longer pink inside, 6-8 minutes.

That's it. Assemble as you like, this is fantastic over tortillas with salsa and lettuce. It's also great served in a bowl with rice. Have fun!

Monday, May 15, 2017

Spring Pea Pasta

I set out to make Lemon Pesto Pasta the other night. I cook the pasta and reach for the pesto, only to find that I was completely out! Oops. Happily, I think on my feet in the kitchen and grabbed a leftover piece of grilled chicken and some Parmesan. I had a bag of fresh peas in there too, waiting for something else, so I re-purposed them. I don't miss the pesto one bit.

Spring Pea Pasta

1pkg Lemon Pasta
1 grilled chicken breast, chopped or shredded
8oz fresh spring peas
1/4 cup pasta water
1 tsp butter
dash of black pepper
2-3 tbsp fresh grated Parmesan
1/4 cup Olive-N-Grape Parsley Olive Oil
1 lemon, for serving

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil and cook the pasta al dente, rinse and set aside. Steam the peas in a microwavable safe bowl, or on the stove top until crisp tender.

In a small bowl, whisk the reserved pasta water with the butter, Parmesan and Olive Oil. In a serving bowl, turn out the pasta and combine gently with the peas and chicken. Toss the sauce with the pasta, making sure to coat everything.

Serve with a squeeze of lemon on each serving.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

New Pasta Trials

We recently got in some really amazing one-pot meals. They have a great variety and are easy to make. They boast easy clean up and great taste. How could it go wrong?

Most of the ones we carry are also Vegan, so it's an easy meal to have on hand if you are or someone you know is Vegan.

This week, I made 3 different ones to see how they turned out and give you my impressions. Here you go!

First up, The Spaghetti with Herbs

This is a nice dish. It calls for 3 1/5 cups of water and it really means 1/5 not 1/2. The pasta is smooth and the flavor is rich and tomato-y. It suggests adding some sesame seeds, I suggest roasted veggies too.

Next, Trofiette Pasta with Basil Pesto

The question is, how can a Vegan Pesto be creamy? The answer is, don't drain your pasta. The silky starches from the cooked pasta, combine with the herbs to make this pesto sauce have a really great mouth-feel. The flavor is bright and the pasta is this cute wiggly shape that reminds me of moustaches. It also has sunflower seeds in it and I love their crunch, but there's never enough of them. It suggests Parmesan Cheese additions and I agree. I also suggest a couple tablespoons of unsalted sunflower seeds just because.

This leaves the Fregola with curry & raisins for last.

Okay, this one took a bit longer to cook than the directions said. The water just would not absorb! However, I think you should only cook it as long as the directions say, because it actually absorbs more as it cools (making leftovers a solid block). This isn't a curry like Indian curry. It's very mild and I ended up drizzling it with Olive-n-Grape Hot Chili Oil. I love the little nuggets of pasta, they're very fun, but I think this one needs the most additions. After the picture, I tore up some spinach to add in and extra raisins as well. I think this would be great with some browned sausage tossed in as well and maybe a few diced tomatoes.

These were so much fun. I can't wait to try more!

Monday, April 17, 2017

Asian Asparagus

This is another side dish that I like to turn into my main meal. The fresh asparagus of the season is just so good.

Asian Asparagus 

1 bunch asparagus
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tbsp Olive-N-Grape Toasted Sesame Garlic Ginger Oil
1 tbsp Olive-N-Grape Garlic Cilantro Balsamic
1 tsp sesame seeds, black and white mixed
Few pinches Bonito flakes
     or, 1 tsp fish sauce

Trim the woody ends off the asparagus and cut into bite sized pieces on the angle.

Heat the sesame oil over medium heat and add the garlic. Saute for 30 seconds and add the asparagus. Season with the bonito flakes. Cook stirring often, until fork tender and bright green, 5-7 minutes.

While still on the heat, sprinkle on the balsamic and sesame seeds. Toss to coat quickly and remove from the heat.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Roasted Grape Tomatoes

These are great as a side dish, but I love to save them to use on sandwiches or to toss with pasta! I often double of triple this just because I love them so much. Will last around a week in the fridge.

Roasted Grape Tomatoes

1 pint grape tomatoes
2 tbsp Olive-N-Grape Greek Seasoning Olive Oil or
     Olive-N-Grape Oregano Olive Oil & a squeeze of Lemon Juice
2 tbsp Olive-N-Grape Fig Baslsamic

Preheat the oven to 350°. Halve the tomatoes and place in a large bowl. Sprinkle with the olive oil and stir well to coat.

Turn the tomatoes out into a baking dish large enough to spread them out in a single layer.

Place on a lower shelf in the oven and roast for 30-40 minutes, stirring once, halfway through.

Drizzle the balsamic over and return to the oven for 5 minutes.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Chicken Marsala

I love eating out. But it can get pricey, so I've learned to make tons of stuff at home. I don't always make it like a restaurant would, but you can usually recognize what it was supposed to be! 

Chicken Marsala is a restaurant favorite. I don't always dredge the chicken in the flour at home, but it does give it that nice crust. I included the leftovers recipe as well. Simple, but fun. 

Chicken Marsala

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tbsp favorite spice blend, Prime Rub or Original are best
1 lb thin sliced chicken, cut into strips
4 tbsp Olive-N-Grape Porcini olive oil, divided
2 tablespoons butter
3 cups sliced mushrooms
3/4 cup Marsala wine
1/2 cup chicken broth
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a shallow bowl or plate combine the flour and spies and stir to combine thoroughly. Dredge the chicken breast halves in the seasoned flour mixture, shaking to remove any excess flour.

Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until very hot but not smoking. Add 1 tablespoon of the butter and cook the chicken breasts until golden brown on both sides, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

Add 1 tablespoon of the remaining olive oil to the pan and add the mushrooms. Cook, stirring frequently, until mushrooms are golden brown around the edges. Add the wine and bring to a boil, scraping to remove any bits from the bottom of the pan.

When the wine has reduced by half, add the chicken broth and cook another 2-3 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened slightly. Lower the heat to medium and return the chicken breasts to the pan and continue to cook until they are cooked through and the sauce has thickened, about 5 to 6 minutes.

Add salt and pepper, to taste and serve immediately.

Leftover Chicken Marsala Salad

My favorite leftovers. Chop the chicken into bite sized pieces and serve on top of greens with extra sauce for dressing. Delicious.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Kickin' Jalapeno Salad

Kickin’ Jalapeno Salad

¼ Red onion, diced
2-4 strips crispy bacon, crumbled
1 small cucumber, sliced in quarters
A few handfuls of Arugula and Romaine, roughly chopped
½ pint small tomatoes, halved
1 avocado, diced
½ jalapeno, seeds removed and minced
1 tsp Key West Spice Blend
2 tbsp Jalapeno Balsamic
1 tbsp Oregano Olive Oil

Put all the salad ingredients into a large bowl and toss gently to combine. Portion into individual bowls.

 Stir the spice blend into the olive oil and drizzle onto the salads. Follow with a drizzle of the balsamic and enjoy!