Recipe

Swanky Sandwiches

We’ve all been there.  Wanting to make supper, needing it to be quick but not a tired old sandwich.  Get ready for the swanky sammie.

This delicious creation comes from Blue Apron.  It came together quickly and had a satisfying crunch when we bit into it.  Yum!

PESTO CHICKEN PANINIS

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 12 lbs chicken breasts, chopped
  • 4 sandwich buns
  • 13 cup basil pesto
  • 14 cup grated pecorino cheese
  • 4 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese
  • 2 tablespoons gheeor 2 tablespoonsbutter
  • 1 tablespoon italian seasoning
  • 15 ounces tomato sauce

DIRECTIONS

  • Halve the rolls.
  • Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Season with salt and pepper. In a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat the ghee on medium-high until melted. Add the seasoned chicken in an even layer. Cook, without stirring, 3 to 4 minutes, or until lightly browned. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, 3 to 4 minutes, or until browned and cooked through. Turn off the heat.
  • While the chicken cooks, in a small pot, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the tomato sauce (carefully, as the liquid may splatter) and Italian seasoning. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 3 to 4 minutes, or until slightly thickened. Turn off the heat. Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired.
  • Assemble the paninis using the halved rolls, pesto, cooked chicken, mozzarella (tearing into small pieces before adding), and the pecorino; season with salt and pepper. Wipe out the pan used to cook the chicken. In the same pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium until hot. Add the paninis. Place a heavy-bottomed pot (or pan) on top and press down. Cook, occasionally pressing down on the pot, 4 to 5 minutes per side, or until the cheese is melted and the bread is lightly browned (if the pan seems dry, add a drizzle of olive oil before flipping). Carefully transfer to a cutting board and halve on an angle.
Charleston SC · Charlotte

Best of Restaurants: Bread

We normally don’t think of bread as being that important because too many restaurants give it to you as an afterthought.  But these restaurants made the extra effort to make their bread the very best, and should be commended.

Cornbread from Mert’s Heart and Soul in Charlotte

Milk Bread from Kindred in Davidson

Biscuit from Tupelo Honey in Charlotte, NC

Bread from The Oak Steakhouse in Charleston, SC

Complimentary bread and honey butter from Heirloom in Charlotte, NC

Recipe

Healthy but Yummy

I’m such a foodie.  I’m a foodie that desperately wants to eat healthier.  But I find that some healthy recipes just aren’t great tasting.  Feels like I’m settling.  These recipes don’t make me feel that way.

HEALTHY ASIAN LETTUCE WRAPS

Source: Apple of my Eye

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Recipe

Argentine Dinner

My brother-in-law is from Argentina, close to Mendoza.  He makes some amazing chimichurri sauce that we eat on steak or Argentine sausages when we have a cookout at their home.  Always a fun time, and he was the inspiration for tonight’s dinner.

Key West Flank Steak with Chimichurri Sauce, Potatoes and salad with grilled naan

Key West Flank Steak

  • 1 large red onion, sliced
  • 1 cup minced fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup Key lime juice
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 6 Key limes, halved
  • 1 beef flank steak (1 pound)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  1. In a small bowl, combine onion, cilantro, vinegar, lime juice and 2 tablespoons oil until blended. Pour 1 cup marinade into a large bowl or shallow dish. Add lime halves. Rub steak with remaining oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add to bowl; turn to coat. Refrigerate 8 hours or overnight. Cover and refrigerate remaining marinade.
  2. Drain steak, discarding marinade and limes in bowl. Place reserved marinade in a food processor; process until chopped chopped.
  3. Grill steak, covered, over medium heat or broil 4 in. from heat until meat reaches desired doneness (for medium-rare, a thermometer should read 135°; medium, 140°), 6-8 minutes per side. Baste occasionally with reserved marinade. Let stand 10 minutes before thinly slicing steak across the grain.

CHIMICHURRI SAUCE

INGREDIENTS

1 cup (packed) fresh Italian parsley

1/2 cup olive oil

1/3 cup red wine vinegar

1/4 cup (packed) fresh cilantro

2 garlic cloves, peeled

3/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon salt

 

PREPARATION

Puree all ingredients in processor. Transfer to bowl. (Can be made 2 hours ahead. Cover and let stand at room temperature.)

Source: Epicurious

 

Bacon and Pancetta Potatoes

4 thick-cut slices bacon, roughly chopped

2 (1/4-inch thick) slices pancetta, cut into 1/4-inch pieces

3 medium russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1 garlic clove, thinly sliced

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, plus extra for seasoning

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus extra for seasoning

2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh thyme leaves

  1. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the bacon and pancetta. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the bacon and pancetta are brown and crispy, about 10 to 12 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove the bacon and pancetta pieces to paper towels to drain. Add the potatoes and garlic to the pan. Season with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until the potatoes are golden and cooked through, about 20 to 25 minutes. Add the thyme, cooked bacon and cooked pancetta to the skillet and cook for 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  2. Transfer the potatoes to a large serving bowl and serve immediately.

Source: Giada DeLaurentis

Ranch Dressing

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped herbs (combination of parsley, chives, chervil, savory, dill or celery leaves)
  • 1 teaspoon cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste

directions

Combine ingredients in a small bowl and whisk to combine thoroughly. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.

Recipe

Summer Grilling

The one thing I love about summer is all of the grilling we get to do and the eating al fresco (that means outside, right?).  Even if you have those indoor grill pans, nothing beats the carcinogens of an actual grill.  I mean the grill marks.

Our dinner tonight was grilled chicken pitas.  I’m going to give you the recipe for the grilled chicken (super easy) then you just assemble with your favorite toppings.  Mine has lettuce, Ranch dressing, and red onion.  Yum!

Grilled Italian Chicken Breast Fillets

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 chicken breast fillets007
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped garlic
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

DIRECTIONS

Place chicken in bowl; return to refrigerator. In a separate bowl mix together lemon juice, salt, garlic and red pepper; gradually whisk in olive oil. Stir in dried oregano. Pour marinade over chicken to coat. Cover and refrigerate at least one hour, turning chicken occasionally. Preheat grill to medium-hot. Remove chicken from marinade and discard. Grill until tests done.

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Grilled Taco Chicken

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons taco seasoning mix
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • nonstick cooking spray

directions

Preheat grill to medium high heat. In a small bowl, combine taco seasoning mix, chili powder and salt. Spray each breast with cooking spray and sprinkle with spice mixture. Rub evenly to coat well. Grill chicken, turning occasionally, for 15 to 18 minutes or until no pink remains in the chicken and the juices run clear.

KRISTI’S DAD’S BASTING SAUCE

Funny story with this sauce. My college dorm mates and I took turns cooking for each other because we hated eating at the school cafeteria.  A friend had a secret sauce that she used to grill burgers with, and they were delicious!  Naturally, I asked for the recipe.  She said “no, it’s a secret.”  We waited for her to go to the bathroom and set up watches, while I rummaged through her desk.  Two seconds later I found the sticky note with the info.  Devious yes?  Delicious?  Also yes.

Ingredients

1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 cup water
4 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon garlic powder

Bring to a boil slowly. Baste on meat liberally.

Gastonia · Hickory · Miramar Beach · Mooresville

Best of Restaurants: Pizza

I’ve heard it said that even bad pizza is good pizza.  I challenge those people to try a Little Caesar’s Hot-n-Ready pizza.  Blech.  There are so many better choices, folks!  Example:

Cheese Pizza from Alino’s in Mooresville, NC

 

Pepperoni Pizza from Tony’s in Hickory

Pepperoni and Meatball Pizza from Grimaldi’s in Miramar Beach, FL

Half Pepperoni/Half Cheese Pie from Life of Pie in Gastonia

Recipe

Recipe: 5 Minute Tomato Salsa

Mexican food is my favorite.  And the one thing I love about Mexican food above all others is the salsa.  This one reminds me of the salsa at one of my childhood favorite haunts: Pancho’s in Ft. Walton Beach Florida.  Easy to make, and very fresh tasting!

5 MINUTE TOMATO SALSA

Very fresh, make as spicy as you want by leaving seeds of jalapeno in if desired.
Source: The Best Quick
1/2 small jalapeno, minced
1/4 small red onion, peeled
1 small garlic clove, pressed and minced
2 tablespoons packed fresh cilantro leaves
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons lime juice
14 1⁄2 ounces diced tomatoes, drained
Pulse all ingredients except tomatoes in food processor until minced, about 5 times.
Add tomatoes and pulse 2 times. Transfer to fine mesh sieve and drain for one minute.