Posts Tagged feta
I may have neglected the blog over the the past 6 months, but you can bet I wouldn’t forget it’s 3 year anniversary! Compared to last year, there hasn’t been as many noteworthy blog-happenings. However, there were some really delicious and popular posts from the past year, such as this Red & White Sangria to celebrate Canada Day, the zesty Tequila Lime Bison Tacos, and some tasty Cranberry, Almond & Date Power Bars. Of course the biggest thing to happen for Kyle and I was the birth of our daughter in October; not exactly blog related, but being busy with her has definitely been the main reason the blogging has slowed down. The past six months with her have been so amazing … and the little bean has started to eat real food, so you can imagine how exciting that is for someone as food crazed as I! I’m sure we’ll be sharing lots of fun foods that we make with her as she grows up. Thanks again for another great year – and for sticking around even after the reduction in posts!
To celebrate this year, I figured why not cook up a good ‘ol Gorging George favourite? Tacos! Always my back up for those busy, “I-Haven’t-a-Clue-What-to-Cook” kind of days (I even have a pork shoulder currently braising away to pile onto some tortillas for tonight’s dinner). I’ve had beef, pork, bison, some vegetarian tacos and even enchiladas on the blog, but I have yet to share a fish taco. So I’m finally posting a recipe for some salmon tacos that I made a few months ago. They are crispy and spicy, and topped with a mound of freshly limed cabbage & jalapenos, some pickled red onions, creamy avocado, salty feta and a sour cream that has a slight kick to it. A great treat for a celebration or even a weeknight meal. If you don’t have dinner plans this long weekend, I suggest you get yourself to the grocery store ASAP to grab all the ingredients to make these – they will not disappoint. Here’s to another year of sharing my favourite recipes with you!
Crispy Chipotle Salmon Tacos
Note – I just listed “kosher salt” as an ingredient, omitting the quantity, as it’s used often throughout the recipe to season everything. I am assuming that you have at least 1 Tbsp of salt kicking around. If you don’t have any kosher salt and have to use Table Salt, please reduce the amount slightly as the smaller granules would make everything rather salty if used in the same quantity.
1/2 small red onion, sliced
red wine vinegar
8 flour tortillas
1 lb centre-cut salmon filet
1 1/2 – 2 tsp chipotle chili powder, divided
2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
1 cup panko
3 cups green cabbage, thinly sliced
1 jalapeno, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
1 juicy lime (or 2 if they are not juicy)
1 cup sour cream
1 avocado, pitted & sliced
1/2 cup feta, diced
Fill a mason jar or small container with the sliced red onion. Fill it up halfway with red wine vinegar. Add 1 tsp of salt and fill the rest of the jar with water. Allow to “pickle” while you make the tacos.
Heat your tortillas according to package instructions. Keep warm.
Heat 1 Tbsp of the olive oil over medium heat in a large non-stick pan. Slice the salmon into 8 equal strips (they should be around 3/4″ wide each). Sprinkle all the salmon pieces evenly with 1 tsp of the chipotle chili powder and 1/4 tsp salt and pepper to taste. Whisk the 2 eggs together in a medium dish and pour the panko into another medium dish; season both with salt and pepper.
Working with one piece of fish at a time, first dip the fish in the eggs then into the panko mixture, pressing all the sides gently to ensure they are evenly covered. Place the fish gently into the hot pan. Repeat with remaining fish pieces. You don’t want to crowd the pan, so if yours is not large enough, work in 2 batches. Cook for about 8 minutes, flipping once after 4 minutes to ensure both sides get golden brown. (If you like, you can quickly fry the two outer edges to crisp them up) Remove the cooked fish to a paper towel lined plate.
Meanwhile, combine the cabbage, jalapenos, cilantro, juice of 1 lime, 1 Tbsp olive oil and 1 tsp salt in a medium bowl, mixing thoroughly; set aside. In a small bowl stir together the sour cream and remaining chipotle chili powder – use 1/2 tsp to keep it mild, or a full tsp if you like a lot of heat!
Construct the tacos: smear each tortilla with some of the sour cream mixture, then top with a piece of salmon, some of the cabbage mix, pickled onions, avocado and feta. Devour.
Makes 8 tacos.
In my last post, I talked about how I was craving stew nearing the end of our road trip. I wanted the comfort that a bowl of steaming beef and carrots would bring. But I also had a hankering for a big bowl of chopped salad during our drive back. When on holidays, we tend to use it as an excuse to eat fairly unhealthy. We were lucky to be staying with family, so there were a lot of home-cooked, healthy meals laced between our gluttonous lunches and evenings out. But the damage to our healthy eating habits had been done – and so I couldn’t wait to dig my face into a mound of vegetables upon our return home. Funny how we crave healthy food when away … but once back into our routine, all I can think about is chomping down on a juicy piece of fried chicken.
As I’ve stated time-and-time again, I wanted to make sure I used mostly in season produce in my salad. Sure, I was technically craving a salad filled with baby lettuces, cucumber, peppers, and tomatoes – but I knew I would be disappointed by the lack of flavour if I gave in. I browsed through the grocery store for heartier vegetables that would still satisfy my hunger for freshness. And because it’s still winter here, I amped up the punch in the dressing; using lots of garlic and anchovy to make a powerful coating for the chopped vegetables. It was welcomingly intense; definitely not for the light of heart. So if you’re making this for a date, or maybe don’t want so much bite, cut back on the garlic and reduce the amount of anchovy; but please don’t leave them out. I promise the salad is balanced with the addition of sweet, chopped dates; enough to cut the salty, sharpness to a pleasing level.
Winter Chopped Salad
3 cups curly endive, chopped
1/2 cup fennel bulb, chopped
3 radishes, sliced
1/2 cup kohlrabi, chopped
1 beet, sliced
3 green onions. chopped
1/3 cup feta cheese, chopped
1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted
2 Tbsp dates, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 anchovy filet or 1/2 tsp anchovy paste
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp honey
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/8 tsp pepper
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Combine first 9 ingredients (endive through dates) in a large serving bowl. Whisk together first 7 dressing ingredients together in a bowl (garlic through pepper). Slowly whisk in the olive oil. Gently toss the salad with the dressing just prior to serving.
In a week where I found out I will have to be living without gluten in my life for around a year (the horror!), I take comfort in knowing that I Will Always Have Pork. My taste buds are thanking my body for not being a complete failure. (I kid. I realize gluten intolerence/celiac disease are serious conditions)
This recipes combines some flavours that by now I’m sure you know I adore: sundried tomatoes, salty feta, and of course, pork. Oh, but I didn’t just stop at one type of pork. Even though this porky tenderloin would have been fantastic just stuffed, seared, and roasted, I decided to make it all the more delicious by adding more pork. So it was cradled in a proscuitto blanket before being sent to the saute pan to seal in the juices. And it was good.
Sundried Tomato & Feta Stuffed Pork Tenderloin wrapped in Proscuitto
Umm…how is that for a recipe title? I think it encompasses the awesomeness that is this meaty meal.
1 lb pork tenderloin
1/2 cup feta, chopped
6 sundried tomatoes in oil, chopped
2 Tbsp parsley, chopped
1 Tbsp basil, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 tsp salt & pepper
4-5 slices prosciutto
1 Tbsp olive oil
Preheat oven to 400ºF.
Remove any silver skin from the tenderloin. Butterfly the pork tenderloin (cut it down the middle vertically, but not all the way through – it should open up like a book), then place it between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound it thin with a meat mallet – you’ll want about 1 cm thickness. Set aside. Note: you can also use a heavy can of soup to pound the pork.
Preheat an oven-proof pan on medium-high heat. Meanwhile, combine the feta, sundried tomatoes, parsley, basil, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Stir in 1 Tbsp of the the sundried tomato oil (or 1 Tbsp of olive oil). Spread out the feta mixture along the middle of the pork, vertically. Starting at the short end of the pork, start rolling it up like a jelly roll. Place the prosciutto slices in a row on your work surface; you’ll want them so they are vertical to you. You will need 4-5 depending on the length of your tenderloin – you want enough that the length of the prosciutto slices lined up equals the length of your tenderloin. Place the tenderloin on top of one end of the prosciutto slices, roll up the tenderloin in the prosciutto.
Heat up the olive oil in the prepared pan. When it’s hot, place the tenderloin in the pan and sear both sides (as you can see above, my tenderloin had to be curved to fit the pan). When you’re done searing, place the pan in the pre-heated oven and roast for 25-40 minutes, depending on desired degree of doneness (we like ours a bit pink, so we only roast for about 25 minutes; but maybe you like yours well-done). Remove pork from oven to a cutting board and let stand, covered with foil, for 5-10 minutes. Slice into 1″ thick slices and serve.
This lunchtime creation was born because of two fixations: 1) my need to find more quick lunch meals. We’ve been slacking in the lunch department in this household lately. I’ve rarely been planning ahead and making meals, as I’ve been tired of the usual sandwiches & salads. And our leftovers have been scarce – too little food or are we just being glutons? I’m not too sure; and 2) my obsession with a “salsa” I’ve been making for the past few years. It combines 3 loves of mine: feta, olives, and sun-dried tomatoes into a lovely dip. I came across the recipe over at Smitten Kitchen, and I would marry it if I didn’t love my husband so much.
When thinking about a very quick lunch, my first thought was the roasted chickens you find at the grocery store. I figured I could just go ahead and make some chicken Caesar pitas and be done with it. But Kyle doesn’t have the luxury of being able to make his sandwich the moment before he eats it, so a soggy Caesar in a soggy pita sounded unappetizing. When I took a look in my fridge I saw my 3 stand-by salsa stars staring back at me, begging to be chopped, mixed and greedily eaten. So I combined the olives, feta and sundried tomatoes with the chicken and added a bit of a dressing to keep everything moist.
We made these the day we were eating them; mine only a few seconds before I tucked in and my mother-in-law’s and husband’s in the morning. The report back from Kyle was a soggy-free and delicious pita when eaten by the afternoon.
Greek Chicken Pitas
Inspired by Roasted Chicken & Smitten Kitchen
You could add cucumbers and peppers to further replicate a Greek salad if you wish. I don’t really think the pita needs it though. And to be honest, I find the combination of cucumbers and chicken to be rather disgusting.
For the Chicken Salad
2 cups cooked & shredded chicken (I used a half-&-half combo of white & dark meat)
1/4 cup feta, chopped
1/4 cup kalamata olives, pitted & chopped
1 Tbsp sundried tomatoes (packed in oil), chopped
1 Tbsp oil from sundried tomatoes (or extra virgin olive oil)
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp dried oregano
salt & pepper to taste
For the Pita
3 pitas, cut in half
12 slices tomato (approx.)
about 1/4 cup red onion, sliced
lettuce (I used baby romaine)
Combine chicken, feta, olives, and sundried tomatoes in a bowl – gently stir together. Combine remaining chicken salad ingredients in a small bowl and whisk together. Pour over the chicken mixture and stir to combine. You can now refrigerate this over night in a tightly sealed container. The chicken salad will keep for 3 days in the fridge.
When you’re ready to make your pitas, divide the chicken salad evenly among the 6 pita halves. Top with tomato, onions, and lettuce.
Serves 3 (2 pita halves each).