Tag Archives: Arugula

Week 29, Meal 3: Salsa verde grilled chicken, roasted beet and goat cheese salad

Week 29, Meal 3: Grilled chicken tossed in pistachio and herb salsa verde over arugula salad with roasted beets, goat cheese and lemon vinaigrette

(Yield: 2 servings)

Chicken
12 oz. chicken breast, butterflied
1 clove garlic, minced
1 small shallot, minced
1/2 T tarragon, chopped
1/2 T parsley, chopped
1/2 T chives, thinly sliced
1/4 c pistachios, chopped
1 T olive oil
1 lemon, juiced

Salad
5 oz. wild arugula
6 baby beets, different colors if possible
salt and pepper, as needed
1 t olive oil
1 oz. chevre goat cheese Dressing
1 lemon, juiced
1 T vegetable or grapeseed oil

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Toss beets with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place on a rack in a small roasting pan, with enough water in the pan to cover the bottom of it. Cover the pan with foil and roast the beets for 30-40 minutes, until easily pierced with a pairing knife.

Remove from the oven and, using paper towels, rub the outer  skin and stem off. Cut beet pieces into wedges.

2. In a Magic Bullet or blender, mix the lemon juice and oil to make the vinaigrette. Reserve.

3. In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, shallot, tarragon, parsley, chives, pistachios and olive oil. Reserve.

4. Preheat your grill to high. When ready to grill, cook chicken until cooked through, 3-5 minutes per side. When chicken is cooked through, slice  into strips and toss with the salsa verde. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

5. Mix the arugula and beets  in a bowl and dress with vinaigrette.

To plate: Lay the greens out thin over the whole plate, as  opposed to a mound  in the middle. Disperse the beets evenly. Top with half of the chicken and sprinkle each salad with 1/2 oz. of goat cheese.

Let’s talk sandwiches …

Excuse my absence on the blog as of late, it’s been a busy couple of weeks at home between helping my family with a couple of things, enjoying time with my vacationing Wifey Nadia and celebrating the last birthday of my 20’s on Catalina Island.

I’ve cooked one of the meals for our upcoming “Southern Comfort” week, but then I put on the brakes because, well, I have been eating meals out lately. I know I said I wouldn’t, but it wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be, especially with late nights, birthday meals, incoming visitors–life in general.

But I will be hunkering down, and as I explained with that lasagna cupcakes recipe, I’m looking for ways to make quick meals that fit into, well, life in general. On a positive note, my weight has stayed relatively the same, and I’m not falling victim to processed fast foods, so at least some of my old habits have permanently changed for the better … though not all of them, obviously, lol.

When I need a quick meal, chances are I turn to my panini press. I love sandwiches because you can do pretty much anything with them–I recently made a Southern Chicken Sandwich with chicken breast, havarti cheese, fresh tomatoes, kale and Red Rooster mayonnaise.

Thinking up that crazy combo reminded me of Chef Brian’s Christmas Cookbook, which had quite a few yummy sandwiches in it. If you’re into sandwiches or paninis, try some of these:

-Roast beef with sliced tomato, Swiss cheese, Dijon mustard and horseradish mayonnaise

-Smoked turkey with avocado, applewood smoked bacon, cheddar cheese, Dijon mustard and olive oil mayonnaise

-Sliced tomato, basil, fresh mozzarella and basil pesto (recipe)

-Roasted chicken with bacon, tomato, avocado and chipotle mayonnaise (two chopped chipotle peppers  in adobo mixed with olive oil mayonnaise)

-Hot turkey pastrami, cole slaw, Swiss cheese, homemade Russian dressing (Olive oil mayonnaise, ketchup, small diced pickle, easy black pepper)

-Turkey Italian sausage, arugula, ricotta cheese, roasted red bell pepper and basil pesto (recipe)

-Media Noche (recipe after the jump) with citrus-marinated pork, Swiss and pickles

-Roast pork (Media noche recipe below, minus all the Cuban marinade ingredients–so, just salt and pepper), goat cheese, bacon, arugula and fig jam (recipe)

I know that’s a lot to take in, but they’re mostly simple to put together and you’ll have a solid meal in no time. Follow the jump for Chef Brian’s Media Noche recipe.

As a final tip, if you’re in Orange County, check out Cafe Chiarini in Santa Ana for your bread. They’re only open on weekdays, and each (massive) loaf is $10, but split one with a friend and you’ll still have enough to make sandwiches all week (one slice in half is enough for one sandwich, the loaf is that large). It’s my favorite sandwich bread in OC, and totally worth trying if you haven’t yet.

Anyways, on to that Media Noche … Continue reading Let’s talk sandwiches …

Week 22, Meal 1: Italian summer salsa ‘n’ shrimp

Grilled shrimp is a favorite meal at my house — Wifey Nadia is most fond of my “summer picnic” with grilled shrimp and asparagus, plus lemon wedges and French bread — but for too long my go-to marinade for shrimp has always been a simple one: parsley, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper.

Week 22, Meal 1: Marinated and grilled shrimp tossed in an Italian summer salsa over sliced heirloom tomatoes took me out of my parsley-and-garlic-smothered comfort zone and into some sideways seafood universe where the sauce is based in tomato.

Not my usual marinade, but one that proved to be a great departure from the same-ol’ scrimp(t). Continue reading Week 22, Meal 1: Italian summer salsa ‘n’ shrimp

Week 18, Meal 3: The chicken and the egg

I don’t know which came first, the chicken or the egg — I just know they both taste great together, especially with a little mound of crispy prosciutto piled on top.

For our finale to No-noodles Italian week, Chef Brian uses his powers of telepathy to read my mind and craft the perfect menu out of everything good in this world.

Here’s Week 18, Meal 3: Baked chicken milanese with arugula, cherry tomatoes, poached egg and crispy prosciutto. Continue reading Week 18, Meal 3: The chicken and the egg

Week 17, Meal 2: Pear … pizza?

I know how Chef Brian does it – he’s a chef, duh – but it’s still always surprising to me when the weirdest sounding meal on the menu turns out to be fantastic.

Such was my luck with Week 17, Meal 2: Caramelized pear, fontina, prosciutto and arugula pizza.

And if you’re wondering about yesterday’s dough woes, I’m happy to report that I totally cheated my way around another carbohydrate car crash by turning my pizza into more of a flatbread.

Dough: 1. Niyaz: 1. Continue reading Week 17, Meal 2: Pear … pizza?

Week 17, Meal 1: I suck at making pizza

I knew there was a reason I always ordered pizza from Rubinos. It’s because making pizza at home, if you have no prior experience working with dough, can be one of the most frustrating kitchen experiences you can have.

Where did all that flour I just put on the counter go? Why is this ball stickier now than it was before I added the flour? What is going on here?!

The worst part? I have two more pizza recipes to get through. I’m either going to screw ’em up, or go pro by the end of the week.

But first, check out how bad I screwed up Week 17, Meal 1: Fresh tomato, ricotta, Parmesan and arugula pizza after the jump.

Continue reading Week 17, Meal 1: I suck at making pizza

Week 11, Meal 1: Penne with arugula and pistachio, grilled shrimp, cherry tomato and fennel

I never choose pasta when I’m out. Restaurants charge a ton of money for something that costs so little and the sauces are usually weighed down with oil or butter.

And as for those sauces, they’re the same everywhere, just variations on the usual suspects — marinara, Alfredo, pesto, etc.

For pasta week, Chef Brian pulled the proverbial rabbit out of his hat with sauces I would never have thought of, let alone thought I’d cook at home.

First was Italian salsa verde. Now, check out Week 11, Meal 1: Penne with arugula and pistachio pesto, grilled shrimp, cherry tomato and fennel. Continue reading Week 11, Meal 1: Penne with arugula and pistachio, grilled shrimp, cherry tomato and fennel

Week 8, Meal 2: Risotto with duck confit, butternut squash apple and Parmesan

Oh, risotto — I love you, I hate you.

I couldn’t feel my arm for about an hour after making Week 8, Meal 2: Risotto with duck confit, butternut squash apple and Parmesan, but it was so creamy, so flavorful and so worth every maddening second in the kitchen.

Continue reading Week 8, Meal 2: Risotto with duck confit, butternut squash apple and Parmesan

Week 8, Meal 1: Sauteed scallops over butternut squash and pear puree with arugula, pear and hazelnut in honey cider vinaigrette

In his notes to me, Chef Brian described his butternut squash and pear puree as “delicious baby food.”

Really, though, Week 8, Meal 1: Sauteed scallops over butternut squash and pear puree with arugula, pear and hazelnut in honey cider vinaigrette is more than than just Gerber for grown-ups.

It’s luxurious and velvety, sweet and savory, and best of all, it looks like it took some work to make, but it’s one of the easier dishes we’ve done on the blog. Continue reading Week 8, Meal 1: Sauteed scallops over butternut squash and pear puree with arugula, pear and hazelnut in honey cider vinaigrette

Week 7, Meal 1: Grass-fed beef burger with bacon, caramelized onion compote, arugula and over-easy egg

Only I would seek out a healthy version of a bacon and egg burger, but it looks like Chef Brian has gone above and beyond yet again with Week 7, Meal 1: Grass-fed beef burger with bacon, caramelized onion compote, arugula and over-easy egg.

Brian says: “When I make a burger it is easy to get carried away with sauces and cheese and tons of bacon. On this one you have compote with a great bacon and onion flavor that the red wine will enrich. The egg takes the place of the sauces and cheeses, which can make the calories get out of control.”

I wrangled whatever the calorie count is down a little while increasing the healthiness of the meat by using grass-fed beef instead (about 250 calories for 4 oz.; Read: Benefits of grass-fed beef). I also went with a reasonably low-cal roll, at 170 calories per piece.

Learn how to prepare this beastly burg after the jump. Continue reading Week 7, Meal 1: Grass-fed beef burger with bacon, caramelized onion compote, arugula and over-easy egg

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