Thursday, April 21, 2011

Greek Grilled Cheese, with a sweet lemon garlic yogurt dip

Upon rising in a famished state, i got into major grilled cheese mode and remembered I had soy mozzarella cheese, pita bread, and salsa. Then i pulled out the olive spread i just bought, and got into a Greek mode.(I was craving a specific type i bought a year back when i was at our local arts market. Nothing trumps homemade olive tapenade, so good. This wasn't nearly the same, but still yum enough)

Alas, this resulted in The Greek grilled cheese pita. Then i thought "OMG, i have yogurt" (yes, i get this excited when i'm starved)
"That means i can make a dipping sauce, which i've never tried with yogurt".

I distinctly remember the taste of the last sauce i dipped my falafels in at a local greek hole in the wall. It is an amazingly yummy place. So, I decided to try and mimic it, but then decided to play with it. It's hard to resist playing, when you have such a wide pallet for taste.

I wasn't sure if the dip would go well with the very salty and sour olive tapenade, but it was what brought it ALL together. They work together in contrasting harmony, thus opposites really do attract. Really.

This is very healthy (aside from the bleached pita pocket bread) You can use any bread, but pita is just my favorite and very low cal, let alone cheap. I'll go with the unbleached wheat next time.


1 pita pocket
2 thin pieces of soy mozzarella (or fresh, it's just what i had on hand)
3 Tbsp Greek 100% non-fat yogurt
tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp garlic or more depending how strong you like your garlic taste
1 tsp organic extra virgin olive oil
1/2 of 1/4 tsp of pure honey
2 tsp salsa or: diced tomatoes
1 Tbsp diced red onion
2 tspn olive tempenade or: minced or grinded olives with a little bit of olive oil, oregano and garlic (I really need to buy a food processor)
Mrs.dash table blend or salt and pepper for added taste
Pam cooking spray

Spray the skillet with some Pam. Let it warm up on med-high heat.
While you wait, carefully cut the pita bread in half (they fall apart easily) so it looks like two half moons,
Cut the cheese so that it fits nicely into each pita half. Put the cheese inside, then follow with the salsa, red onions and tapenade. (1 tsp per half)

Cook each half until lightly browned and the cheese is melted. Turn over and repeat.

(Don't leave the stove while waiting for each side to cook, it only takes but 1-2 minutes)

When they are half way through cooking, spray a little more Pam on top and sprinkle some Mrs. dash or your desired herb

Let that sit for a min to cool down, while you mix the dip.


Get a small bowl and put in 3 Tbsp yogurt, 1 tsp olive oil, 1 tsp lemon juice, and 1/2 tsp garlic.
Mix it all together vigorously, then squeeze in 1/4 tsp honey.
I am guesstimating this is how much i used, so i recommend a taste test, you may need to tweak to your liking.

Finally, get a really sharp knife, unlike mine (as evidenced) and cut the pita pieces into triangles, like pizza, or leave them be and enjoy a mouthful, while you say "Olive Juice!"... or "EW!". We all like different things.

If you try this, let me know what you think!

Side note: This would be awesome with hummus dip too.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Italian brown rice salad, with sweet garlic dressing.

I love a good healthy salad. Especially in the warm summer months, post chilled and waiting to be devoured. A refreshing contrast to the heat beaming down on you all day. I had a huge craving for some this afternoon and tossed up this easy, Italian style version.

3 cups organic baby spinach
1/2 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup black olives
1/2 cup baby tomatoes
1 cup brown rice cooked (1/2 cup uncooked)
3 inch thick chunk of fresh mozzarella

3 Tblspns organic extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tspn honey
3 cracks of sea salt
1/2 tspn garlic powder or minced garlic

Recipe: Cook up a 1/2 cup of brown rice on the stove or if you want it quick, use Uncle Bens 90 minute made rice for the microwave. Put that aside and Bring out a large salad bowl. I love my wooden one from Target. They're so easy to clean, pretty to look at, and chill fast. Fill it with the baby spinach leaves, olives, baby tomatoes, and shredded carrots. Cut up the mozzarella into one inch chunks or however you desire. Throw them in the bowl and toss with a salad fork and spoon. Then take a small bowl and whisk the olive oil, honey, salt and garlic. This is my favorite homemade dressing that i conjured up a while ago. Pour it over the salad and mix again. Then pour the rice in and toss everything up. Then, toss into your mouth. Next time i'm going to make some homemade bread crumbs for this, so it's like bruscheta, but in salad form. This is a very hearty and healthy salad that would pass for dinner or lunch.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Baked zucchini fries

I just followed this revamped recipe to a T and I have to say I am a huge fan of these. They may be a bit more crumbly than traditional zucchini fries, but the fact that it's lower in calories compensates plenty! Remember to really let the individual pieces drip off the excess egg, or the crumbs will bunch up and not stick to the zucchini. I'm going to use the same method with my Tilapia filet, tonight! So good.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Cherry cornbread, with cinnamon drizzle.

I've been on quite the budget pinch lately, so i picked up a few of those 49 cent boxed cornbread mixes, thinking they'd come in handy for a good sweet fix. Well, that time came tonight, but i didn't want just any bland corn bread. So I fished around in my fridge and found some cherries that i re-hydrated to put in my morning yogurt, and thought that would taste really good. So i spooned out a handful and threw them in the mix. Then i thought that some kind of cinnamon topping might taste good to top it off. So, while that cornbread was baking, i looked in my cupboard to see if i had the ingredients to pull something off. Indeed I did. Cinnamon is always at my fingertips, as i add it to almost everything. You'll probably see this in the near future. I had some brown sugar, and half and half and mixed it all together to form a medium thick syrup consistency. Then drizzled it onto the finished bread. It turned out simply yummy, for never experimenting with cornbread before. Emphasis on simple!

1/4 cup re-hydrated cherries
1 box of cornbread mix

1.2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tsp cinnamon
1 Tbsp half and half

Directions: Bake corn bread as usual, but stir in the rehydrated cherries 

For the topping, mix all ingredients together and lightly drizzle on bread when it has cooled off in the fridge for about 45 min's or so.

Sun dried tomato "Bagelet"

This morning I was about to cook my normal run of the mill breakfast, with little deviations here and there, and thought. "You know what, I'm just going to cook it all together and see what happens." Enter the Sun dried tomato, Bagelet. (Bagel-Omelet)

1 Tbsp of unsalted butter
1 tsp of garlic
1 tsp of Mrs. Dash (It's my fast go to when I want a punch of herbs that I don't have fresh. It's also great, as it doesn't contain any added salt)
2 eggs or 1 cup of egg whites (I used Market Pantry, as it’s all I had at the time)
1 Market Pantry part-skim mozzarella string cheese (I used String cheese, for the same reason as above, and it’s cheaper. Nothing holds a candle to fresh mozzarella, but this makes a great alternative when on a budget.)
Handful of julienne cut, sun dried tomatoes
1/2 cup raw organic baby spinach
1 Tbsp of tomato sauce
2 Thomas bagel thin slices
2 cracks of sea salt
Sprinkle of Parmesan cheese

Normally, I put my bagel in the oven and fry up some scrambled eggs or an omelet, while I wait.  This time, I decided to lightly fry the bagel in the pan, with some butter, on med/high heat. I let that cook for about 3 minutes, while I prepared my egg mixture. I used egg whites this time, but whole eggs would have been even yummier and added a thicker, more wholesome taste. Whisk egg whites or two whole eggs. Add the garlic, Mrs. Dash, and two cracks of sea salt. Mix all ingredients well. Then add the spinach, cheese, and sundried tomatoes. Whisk together all ingredients; flip the bagel onto the other side, making sure it’s lightly browned. ( I cheated and used two pans, as I started out with a small pan. I’m not afraid to admit I’m an amateur ;)  Then, pour mixture evenly right over top, making sure to cover all of the bagel part. Let that cook for approximately 3 more minutes and be careful not to let the cheese burn. Top with some fresh tomato sauce and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese and you are done!   My favorite part about this dish is how the outer layer was nice and toasty, yet the bagel was soft when I bit in. Very similar to a french toast, only not sweet, and a different texture of bread. It blended in wonderfully with the eggs, cheese, and sun dried tomato flavor. This was just a surprising treat to my taste buds and a lesson to myself, to never underestimate even the simplest of combination's.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...