Sandwich

marinated-grilled-chicken-sandwich

Today is one of those days I feel like I just can’t go on. It is just too hot. When your face starts sweating literally the second you step outside, it’s too hot. Add in 75 trips to the car loading babies in/out and I might just lose it. Add in – getting your eyebrows threaded and your baby B throwing a fit for keeping him strapped down for more than 3 minutes, grabbing a vase and breaking it, having to leave halfway through (yep, one brow done), and going back OUT into the 100+ degrees, and quite frankly I’m surprised I’m here to even tell you about it. I really never get my eyebrows done anymore because it’s too much of a hassle, but I thought it might be a good idea since we’re having our one year photos done tomorrow. Oh well, at least I got one done.

Instead I’ll talk about what we ate last week (in between two bouts of the stomach flu).  Super flavorful grilled chicken sandwiches. I ate this a couple ways – with honey mustard, with pickles, with tomatoes, with a couple different buns, and I landed on the simplest version. The chicken is so tasty that it tastes great on its own, with a buttery toasted ciabatta bun. Of course add what you want, but this is a great simple dinner.

Recipe

  • 3 thick boneless skinless chicken breast halves (~1.5 lb)
  • 6 ciabatta rolls, halved and lightly buttered
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/4 cup canola or olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon sriracha
  • black pepper

Prepare the chicken breasts by cutting their thickness in half. You can also pound them thin, but our Central Market chicken breasts are so thick that halving them is best. Mix the marinade ingredients in a ziploc bag; season the chicken with black pepper and add to marinade. I marinated for about 8 hours for extra flavor, but if you only have a couple hours that will be fine.  Heat the grill to medium high and grill 3-4 minutes per side.  Butter the ciabatta rolls and toast in the oven.  Top with what you want, but you won’t need it!

Greek Fajitas

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I absolutely love eating my dinner in a tortilla. I’ll eat anything in there. Anything at all. A few examples:

  1. tacos (duh)
  2. quesadillas (duh)
  3. BBQ chicken quesadilla (ok)
  4. peanut butter quesadilla (woah)
  5. Egg burrito (yep)
  6. and the best….Pizzadilla (wow! idea courtesy of my BIL circa 2005)

So we’ve decided to move our Greek chicken pitas out of the pita and into the fajita. A Greek version of our favorite Mexican dinner. My only regret is that we didn’t think of this sooner, and the only thing I’m lying about is that dollop of Tzatziki shown in that photo. I use like 75 dollops.

Recipe

Chicken Marinade

  • ~2 lbs boneless/skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup Greek vinaigrette (your favorite store bought)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 2 small lemons)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano (optional)

Tzatziki Sauce

  • 1 container plain yogurt (about 5 oz)
  • 1 container 2% Greek yogurt (~7 oz)
  • 1/2 cup seeded & chopped cucumber
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill
  • ~1 clove garlic (more or less to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

Fajitas

  • 2 small yellow/white onions (to caramelize)
  • Feta cheese (for topping)
  • 1/2 chopped cucumber (for topping)
  • 4-8 of your favorite tortillas

Mix the marinade ingredients in a Ziploc bag. Add the chicken and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, up to 8.  Mix all tzatziki ingredients together and refrigerate until ready to use.

To caramelize the onion, slice thin, combine into a pan with a drizzle of olive oil and touch of salt, and cook down for about 20 minutes.

Grill the chicken (about 5-6 min/side for thicker cuts, 3 min/side for cutlets); let stand for a few minutes and then slice pieces about 1/4 in thick.

Assemble fajitas on your tortillas with caramelized onion, chicken, and top with chopped cucumber and fresh feta. Serve with sauce.

 

 

 

my-favorite-healthy-egg-salad

I feel like one of the hardest parts of working full time is coming up with lunch solutions. Pack a lunch? Eat out every day? Skip it altogether? Tough answers to some tough questions. As a side note – I’ve always had a strange admiration for people who say ‘I forgot to eat lunch today.’  I mean. How? How did you forget? Weren’t you starving? Weren’t you counting down the hours/minutes/seconds until you got to eat something good? Isn’t lunch the highlight of an otherwise mundane day? I don’t get it, you guys, and I’m intrigued.

But the reason lunch is important during the week is two-fold: 1) obvious nutrition requirements and 2) it gives you something to look forward to. If I didn’t have lunch I might just simply quit my day after breakfast.

This egg salad is one of my ultimate go-to’s for lunch. It’s healthy, it’s easy to make, and you can make it in larger batches to have all week. You can put it on toast, you can put it on crackers, or you can just eat it with a fork like I do most days. It’s delicious.

Recipe (1)

  • 4 eggs (will be using 1 whole egg, and 3 egg whites)
  • 1 tablespoon light mayo
  • 1 tablespoon chopped pickle
  • 1/2 teaspoon pickle juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • ~1/8 teaspoon kosher/coarse salt, more to taste
  • pepper

Hard boil the eggs. I do mine by placing them in a pot and covering with water, bringing them to a boil, then turning off the heat and covering for 10 minutes. I then drain the water and replace with ice water. The ice bath for a minute or two ensures the yolks stay yellow.

Peel the eggs and slice one whole egg, and 3 egg whites into a bowl. Discard the remaining yolks. Mash the egg and egg whites with a fork. Mix in the mayo, pickle, pickle juice, mustard, S&P. Serve warm or refrigerate to cool down.

Greek Chicken Pitas

greek-chicken-pitas

Lately my life has consisted of these things: feed the babies, change the babies, stimulate their development, feed & change them some more, go to bed. Wake up, repeat. I feel like I’m on a hamster wheel. Actually not really, because I see them grow and learn in leaps and bounds each day and it’s truly the most amazing thing. But you know what I mean! I really do love it all. All except maybe the diaper changing, I could do without that. Can someone invent a diaper changer please? Oh and also a baby burper, if I’m putting in requests.

So, dinner is a real highlight of my day! Babies are sleeping, and my husband and I get to eat a good dinner and catch up on the news and our shows. (although truth be told dinner has always been the highlight of my day. I LOVE IT). We love Greek food so I made Greek chicken pitas this week with a delicious marinade, and I got to use my amazing new Le Creuset grill pan. Oh, it was a great night.

Loved these – perfect for an easy summer dinner party.

Recipe
Marinade

  • 2 lb chicken breast tenders (small, thin pieces)
  • 1 small container 2% Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (1 large)
  • Zest from one lemon
  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill
  • 1-2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon kosher/coarse salt
  • Pepper

Tzatziki Sauce

  • 1 small container 2% Greek yogurt
  • One small squeeze fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped and seeded cucumber
  • 1-2 tablespoons fresh dill
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Extras

  • 4 pitas (we used whole wheat)
  • Feta cheese
  • Shredded lettuce
  • Chopped tomatoes

Prepare the marinade by mixing all ingredients into a bowl. Pour into a large Ziploc, adding the chicken and mixing around to coat. Refrigerate for several hours if possible, but at least 30 minutes. Make the tzatziki sauce up to a day in advance, mixing all ingredients in a bowl.

To make the chicken, heat a grill pan to medium and coat with olive oil. Grill chicken about 4 minutes on each side (for thin chicken tenders – more for thicker chicken breasts). Warm the pitas in the microwave for 15-20 seconds, then assemble the sandwiches with desired ingredients. We like to use looooots of sauce over here, so I actually doubled that tzatziki recipe to make sure we would never run out (and we might not, ever).

the-best-chicken-salad-sandwic

Warning! This recipe is for one. Warning! This chicken salad is sooooo good. Exactly what I like in a chicken salad – slightly sweet, slightly tangy, slightly crunchy. If you like a more savory salad, move along.

Recipe

  • 1 heaping cup of shredded chicken (I use rotisserie)
  • 3 tablespoons light mayo
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1/2 tablespoon vinegar
  • Dash salt
  • Handful craisins
  • Handful slivered almonds
  • Handful diced grapes or celery (I used green grapes I had in the fridge)

Mix the mayo, sugar, milk, vinegar and salt together to create the dressing. Mix together with remaining ingredients, and voila! Chicken salad. Serve on some hearty wheat bread and you’ve got one delicious lunch or dinner.

The Real Deal Sloppy Joe

the-real-deal-sloppy-joe

I’ve posted about sloppy joe’s before, but neither of them are the ones I really make regularly.  The first time I was trying to be fancy, and the second time I was trying to be healthy.  But, on any given Sunday when I really make sloppy joe’s, these are the real deal. And quite frankly I never posted about them because I never knew how much of anything I used. I just start squirting things into the pan until they taste like my sloppy joe’s.

Well this past week, I used measuring cups. So here ya go.

**side note: this is my husband’s MOST requested dinner.  Chicken Parm is a close second.

Recipe

  • 2 lbs ground beef (80-90%..80=extra sloppy, 90=healthier)
  • 3/4 cup chopped onions
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ~ 1/2 cup water if using greater than 90% lean
  • 1 1/2 cups Ketchup
  • 1/4 cup Brown sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons Worcestershire (I like 2)
  • 1-2 teaspoons Yellow Mustard (I like 2)
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
  • Squirt BBQ sauce (optional)

Start browning the meat (I typically use 90% so that we can eat the leftovers all week without feeling guilty, but 80% does create a sloppier joe. Another option is to get the 80%, and drain a little of the fat).  Add the onions and cook for several minutes until meat is browned and onions are cooked. Add water and oil if necessary (90% meat will need some added moisture).  Mix in the remaining ingredients and simmer for several minutes to allow the flavors to meld. Have fun eating these! I like mine with pickles.