Avocado and Feta Salsa with Marinated Grilled Chicken and Shrimp Skewers

Avocado and Feta Salad with Marinated Grilled Chicken and Shrimp Skewers

A bright and beautiful Avocado Feta Salsa recipe served with marinated grilled chicken and shrimp. The salsa mingles the fresh flavors of sharp Feta cheese, buttery avocado, juicy grape tomatoes, crisp corn, slightly pungent red onion, and aromatic basil. It is lightly dressed in lemon and extra-virgin olive oil and allows the vibrant flavors to shine brightly. Summer on a plate.

The chicken and shrimp are simply marinated in lemon juice, olive oil, oregano and thyme. They grill up juicy and tender picking up the subtle flavors of the marinade. Eaten together they make a tasty, complimenting trio that is texturally pleasing to the eyes and mouth. Light, clean and healthy. Food that makes you feel good.

The salsa is quite versatile. For lunch the next day I mixed what was left of the shrimp right in with the salsa. Delicious! The salsa on its own or in combination with the chicken or shrimp could also get stuffed into pitas, served over salad greens or be gently tossed with cooked pasta and additional dressing.

 Enjoy my version of surf and turf!

Avocado and Feta Salsa/Salad with Marinated Grilled Chicken and Shrimp Skewers

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Avocado Feta Salsa with Marinated Grilled Chicken and Shrimp Skewers
(by Reeni)

Salsa:
1/2 to 1 Lemon, juiced*
1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/4 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
1 Avocado, diced
1 cup Grape Tomatoes, halved
4 ounces Crumbled Feta Cheese
1/4 Red Onion, thinly sliced in half moons
1/2 cup Cooked Corn, chilled
Sea or Kosher salt and Fresh Black Pepper
6 large Basil leaves, cut in a chiffonade** or thinly sliced

1. In a small mixing bowl whisk 1/2 lemon, olive oil and mustard.

2. To a separate medium bowl add avocado, tomatoes, Feta, onion and corn. Pour dressing over top and gently toss. Season with salt and pepper to taste, add additional lemon juice if needed and garnish with basil.

3. Refrigerate for a few hours before serving to allow the flavors time to develop.

Marinated Chicken and Shrimp Skewers
2 Lemons, juiced*
1/3 cup Olive Oil
1 teaspoon Thyme
1 teaspoon Oregano
2 large boneless, skinless Chicken Breast
1/2 pound Shrimp, cleaned and deveined
Bamboo or Metal Skewers

1. A few hours before serving whisk all ingredients except chicken and shrimp together. Divide evenly and marinate the chicken in refrigerator. Store the remaining marinade in refrigerator.

2. A half hour to an hour before cooking skewer the shrimp and marinate them in the marinade you set aside earlier. Soak bamboo skewers in water.

3. Grill the chicken until juices run clear or an internal temperature of 165 – 174 is reached. When the chicken is almost cooked grill the shrimp skewers on each side. They are done when they turn pink.

4. Let the chicken sit for five minutes, then slice and serve with the salsa over top followed by the shrimp.

*Microwave for ten seconds and then roll against counter using the palm of your hands to get the most juice.

**Stack the leaves, roll them up then cut across the rolled leaves with a sharp knife to make thin ribbons.

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Avocado Feta Salsa: 5 servings/175 calories per serving
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Avocado and Feta Salsa/Salad

I’m sending the Avocado Feta Salsa to Priya of Mharo Rajasthan’s Recipes for her Vegetable/Fruit Event: Avocado!

I’m also sending this to Nithu of Spicy Tasty to enter in her Sizzling Summer Contest.


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Crunchy Pizza Dough Croutons

Crunchy Pizza Dough Croutons with Caesar Salad

I’m bringing you a simple recipe for croutons that are made by pan-frying little pieces of pizza dough and tossing them in Parmesan cheese. While the method is simple the outcome is not. I taste tested one three before adding them to my salad and was quite tempted to eat them all straight away – one right after the other. The heck with the salad! These are extremely addicting! Make extra!

The recipe comes from one of the newer shows on Food Network called Five Ingredient Fix. As soon as I saw what the host, Clarie Robinson was up to I knew these were in my very near future. Cheesy little bites of lightly fried dough? Who can resist? And why would you want to? Claire served hers in a salad dressed lightly with lemon and olive oil that she calls Caesar salad. Where she is limited to five ingredients I am not. I served mine with my Mock Caesar Salad; a knock-off of the traditional dressing using mayo in place of egg and Worcestershire or fish sauce in place of anchovies.

Crunchy Pizza Dough Croutons with Caesar Salad

I didn’t give set amounts because you can really make as little or as many as you’d like. This is more of a method than a recipe. I broke off a small piece of dough while making pizza and saved it to make these another night. I do suggest that you have the salad ready before frying up the croutons. They are best served warm. And if the salad isn’t ready when the croutons are there may not be any croutons left! I’m pretty sure these would be good with any type of salad or dressing. They also make a great appetizer or snack. And are very versatile. I will be playing around with seasonings and different cheese(s).

These really add a little something extra to an everyday salad. I loved them warm with the contrast of the cold salad. They truly are little puffy bites of heaven that melt-in-your mouth. Salty, crusty and totally delicious. Make some today.

Crusty Pizza Dough Croutons & Caesar Salad

Pizza Dough Croutons
(adapted from Food Network)

Pizza Dough
Fresh Parmesan, grated*
Vegetable/Canola oil
3 or 4 garlic cloves, whole,peeled

1. Cut the pizza dough into little rectangles or roll into balls. They will puff up bigger as they cook so cut them a little smaller than you want them to be. Add the Parmesan cheese to a medium size bowl.

2. In a large, heavy-bottomed skillet add about 1/4-inch of oil. Heat on medium-low heat, add garlic cloves and saute.

3. Test oil by frying one piece of dough – the oil should get bubbly around the dough. If not turn heat up to medium. Fry the dough turning until all sides are browned. Drain on paper towels and then add to bowl with Parmesan while still warm. Serve with your favorite salad.

*I used a 1/4 cup for 15 croutons. 

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Mock Caesar Salad Dressing
(by Reeni)

1 tablespoon Mayonnaise
1 tablespoon fresh squeezed Lemon juice
2 teaspoons Worcestershire or Fish Sauce
2 Garlic cloves, finely minced
1 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
1/2 cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated, plus more for shaving/sprinkling over top
Sea/Kosher salt and fresh Pepper
Pizza Dough Croutons

By Hand:
1. In a small mixing bowl whisk together the Mayonnaise, Lemon Juice, Worcestershire, Garlic, and Mustard until well combined.

2. Stream in the oil while whisking and continue whisking for a minute or two.

3. Stir in Parmesan. Taste and adjust to suit your own taste by adding more Garlic, Lemon Juice, Worcestershire, or Mayonnaise for a creamier finish. Season with salt and pepper.

4. Toss with Romaine hearts, additional Parmesan, Croutons, and slices of Parmesan Chicken.

In a Food Processor:
1. To the bowl of a food processor add the Mayonnaise, Lemon Juice, Worcestershire, Garlic, and Mustard. Pulse until well creamy and well combined.

2. Stream in the oil while pulsing. Pulse until well emulsified.

3. Taste and adjust to your own tastes by adding more Garlic, Lemon Juice, Worcestershire or Mayonnaise for a creamier finish.

4. Stir in Parmesan cheese, taste and season with salt and pepper.

5. Toss with Romaine hearts, additional Parmesan, croutons, and slices of Parmesan Chicken.

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Crunchy Pizza Dough Croutons with Caesar Salad

I’m taking your side dishes for the Showdown! Add your links to the bottom of the post HERE.

Do you love burgers? Join us and rate Katie Lee’s Award Winning Logan County ‘Grilled Cheese’ Burger. Find out the details/ get the recipe and add your link to the bottom of the post HERE.

I also want to tell you about a new site to visit called Foodierama.

Foodierama is a homepage for foodies based on the idea of serendipity. It’s designed as a portal front page containing teasers to the latest posts of a list of hundreds of the best food blogs. Whenever users enter the page they discover something new and exciting: a new blog, a new recipe or cooking technique etc. In addition, users get a panoramic view of what’s going on in the food blog-sphere all on one graphic page.” -Dave, co-founder of Foodierama

I’m linking this to Chaya of My Sweet and Savory for her Meatless Monday round-up.


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Caesar Salad with Parmesan Chicken

Caesar Salad with Parmesan Chicken

I call this recipe ‘mock’ Caesar salad because it doesn’t have the classic ingredients that Caesar dressing is known for. I use mayonnaise in place of egg yolks and Worcestershire or Fish sauce in place of anchovies. I’m not ‘really’ replacing the anchovies, just using a different form since fish sauce is made from them. If you don’t like/don’t have fish sauce Worcestershire will work too. It also has anchovies in it. I also like to add a little Dijon mustard for flavor. Through lots of (happy) trials and errors I finally came up with a recipe I’m happy with. It’s every bit as rich and satisfying as the genuine recipe.

I go through periods of time where I am absolutely obsessed with Caesar salad! I’ll eat them night and day for a week straight. During those times it’s nice to have this already to go in the fridge. Each batch makes 4-5 dinner sized salads depending on how much dressing and greens you use and will keep for a few days stored in a glass jar in the refrigerator. Just give it a serious shaking before using.

To turn Caesar salads into a dinner salad I like to add chicken. Juicy, tender, oven-baked Parmesan Chicken to be precise. It’s excellent straight out of the oven, still hot, thinly sliced or rough chopped and piled on top. The leftovers are just as good cold for lunch the next day.

Caesar Salad with Parmesan Chicken

Mock Caesar Salad Dressing
(by Reeni)
1 tablespoon Mayonnaise
1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 teaspoons Worcestershire or Fish Sauce
2 Garlic cloves, finely minced
1 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
1/2 cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated, plus more for shaving/sprinkling over top
Sea/Kosher salt and fresh Pepper
Garlic Croutons
By Hand:
1. In a small mixing bowl whisk together the Mayonnaise, Lemon Juice, Worcestershire, Garlic, and Mustard until well combined.
2. Stream in the oil while whisking and continue whisking for a minute or two.
3. Stir in Parmesan. Taste and adjust to suit your own taste by adding more Garlic, Lemon Juice, Worcestershire, or Mayonnaise for a creamier finish. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Toss with Romaine hearts, additional Parmesan, Croutons, and slices of Parmesan Chicken.
In a Food Processor:
1. To the bowl of a food processor add the Mayonnaise, Lemon Juice, Worcestershire, Garlic, and Mustard. Pulse until well creamy and well combined.
2. Stream in the oil while pulsing. Pulse until well emulsified.
3. Taste and adjust to your own tastes by adding more Lemon Juice, Worcestershire or Mayonnaise for a creamier finish.
4. Stir in Parmesan cheese, taste and season with salt and pepper.
5. Toss with Romaine hearts, additional Parmesan, croutons, and slices of Parmesan Chicken.

Caesar Salad with Parmesan Chicken

Oven-Baked Parmesan Chicken
(by Reeni)
1 and 1/2 pounds boneless Chicken Breast
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup Cornflake Crumbs, Italian Seasoned Bread Crumbs or Panko
1/3 cup Parmesan Cheese, finely grated
1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Prepare a 9×13-inch baking pan by lining it with foil and spraying it with non-stick spray.
2. Pound out the Chicken Breasts between two pieces of Saran Wrap using a meat mallet or a small skillet.
3. In a medium-sized shallow bowl beat the egg. In another shallow bowl mix the Bread Crumbs and Parmesan Cheese.
4. Dunk the Chicken Breasts one at a time into the egg and then into the bread crumbs covering all sides and patting the crumbs on
with your hands if necessary.
5. Place the Chicken Breasts in the prepared pan and bake for about 25 minutes or until juices run clear and center is no longer pink.
Garlic Croutons
(by Reeni)

2 cloves Garlic, minced
1 – 2 teaspoons Olive Oil
Butter
a few slices of baguette or Italian bread, or a hard roll1. Butter both sides of the bread, and then cube as big or as little as you want.

2. To a small skillet add the olive oil, another pat of butter, the garlic and the crumbs.

3. Toast over medium-low heat turning until all sides are golden.

Print Caesar Salad and Parmesan Chicken Recipe

Caesar Salad with Parmesan Chicken

Caesar Chicken Salad on FoodistaCaesar Chicken Salad

Chicken Souvlaki with Greek Salad and Tzatziki

Greek Souvlaki Platter

This is a recreation of my parents favorite Greek diner meal. It is the Chicken Souvlaki platter that is made up of tender, marinated chicken pieces nesteled inside soft, warm pita bread with a salad on the side. The salad is loaded with Feta cheese, red onion, tomato, cucumber and Kalamata olives. But what really makes is special according to them, is the house made dressing. My contribution to the dish is tzatziki, a sauce made with cucumber, dill, lemon and yogurt.

This is a meal of many sauces between the chicken marinade, the tzatziki and the dressing. I was a kitchen witch whipping up potions. My parents loved it and said it tasted just like the diners. Score one for me!

Greek Souvlaki Platter

Chicken Souvlaki ‘Platter’
(by Reeni)

1-2 pounds chicken breast
1/3 cup Olive oil
1/3 cup lemon juice, fresh squeezed
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 onion, grated
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon Oregano
2 dried red chilies
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Metal or wooden skewers
Pita or flatbread

Pound the chicken with a mallet to tenderize and give them an even thickness. Trim away visible fat and tendons. Cut the chicken into strips crosswise about an inch wide. Whisk the rest of the ingredients together. Marinate in a large Ziploc bag or bowl in the refrigerator a couple of hours before cooking or the morning of. If using wooden skewers soak in water for a half hour or so before grilling. Skewer each piece twice lengthwise. Grill on all sides until cooked through. Serve on warm pita with tzatziki sauce and Greek dressing.

Greek Souvlaki Platter

Tzatziki Sauce

1 cup Greek yogurt
1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and diced small
1 clove of garlic, minced
2 teaspoons lemon juice, fresh squeezed
1 tablespoon fresh dill
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste

Drain your Greek yogurt in a strainer lined with cheesecloth or a paper towel for a few hours before or overnight. Combine all the ingredients together. Cover and refrigerate for an hour or two before serving.

Greek Souvlaki Platter

Greek Salad

1/2 cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1/4 cup lemon juice, fresh-squeezed
1 tablespoon Red Wine Vinegar
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon thyme
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
2 cloves garlic, minced
Romaine and mixed lettuce
Tomatoes
Cucumber
Red onion
Olives, like Kalamata (or green or black if you don’t like them)
Crumbled Feta

In a food processor emulsify the first five ingredients together. Season with salt and pepper. Mix in the minced garlic. Serve over a salad with Romaine, chopped tomatoes, sliced cucumber, sliced red onion, Kalamata olives (or black or green), and crumbled feta. Also good drizzled over the chicken.

Printable Recipe

Greek Souvlaki Platter

Greek Salad on FoodistaGreek Salad

Tyler’s Cold Sesame Noodles

Cold Sesame Noodles

The first time I ate cold sesame noodles was when I lived in Tucson. The gourmet sandwich shop where I worked made them extra spicy and kept them extra cold. They were perfect when it was 108 outside and just the thought of hot food made my stomach rumba. Never having made them myself I looked to Tyler for some help. I found what I was looking for in his Cold Sesame Noodle recipe that is heavy on the peanut butter and flavored with just the right amounts of soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, chili sauce and rice wine vinegar. Next time a heat wave hits you know where to find me. Standing in front of the open fridge with a fork in my sesame noodles.

Tyler Florence Fridays

This is my entry for Tyler Florence Fridays. A talented group of foodie bloggers who love Tyler…and his recipes.

Cold Sesame Noodles

Cold Sesame Noodles

Kosher salt
1 pound Chinese egg noodles or spaghetti
1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
3 cloves garlic, smashed
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 cup creamy peanut butter
3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon red chili sauce (recommended: Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce)
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
6 tablespoons water
2 scallions, sliced thin
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
Fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish

1. Cook the noodles in large pot of boiling salted water over medium heat until barely tender and still firm.

2. Drain immediately and rinse with cold water until cool. Drain the noodles well and transfer to a wide bowl.

3. In a blender or food processor add the ginger, garlic, sugar, peanut butter, vinegar, soy sauce, chili sauce, sesame oil, and water. Process until the mixture is smooth.

4. Put the blender jar into the refrigerator and let it chill for about 1/2 hour. Pour
the peanut sauce over the noodles and toss until well coated.

5. Serve garnished with the scallions, sesame seeds, and cilantro.


Cold Sesame Noodles


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Chinese Cold Sesame Noodles

Blue Cheese, Cranberry and Pecan Salad with Grilled Chicken and Honey Mustard Dressing

Red, White & Bleu

This recipe is a recreation of one of my favorite salads from my favorite diner! It is packed with blue cheese, pecans, dried cranberries and topped with grilled chicken. The creamiest, most-delicious, homemade honey mustard you can imagine is drizzled over top.

The textures and different flavors in this salad make it so fun to eat. My taste buds are totally addicted to tart and sweet flavor pairs. I love dried cranberries! They take on a whole new life compared to fresh ones. They are sweeter, less tart and the contrast between them and the bite from the blue cheese is off the flavor charts. Soft, savory, sweet, smoky, salty, crunchy, chewy, creamy, crisp, tangy, tender and juicy; this salad has it all!

It is the most perfect warm weather dinner salad. You can throw the chicken on the grill and have the dressing and salad assembled in the time it takes to cook. And it is nothing short of sublime! Light yet filling and completely addicting!

100_6935 (Small)

The great thing about this salad is you can make it for one or for a crowd. You can adjust how big or how little you want the salad to be. That’s why I haven’t included measurements for the salad fixin’s. But be on the generous side. They really make the salad.

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Red, White and Blue Grilled Chicken Salad
(by Reeni)

For the salad

Chicken breast, boneless, skinless
Romaine hearts, chopped
Dried Cranberries
Pecans or Walnuts
Blue Cheese, crumbled

For the dressing*

2 tablespoons Dijon Mustard
3 tablespoons Honey
2 teaspoons Rice Vinegar
Salt and pepper
Mayonnaise (optional)

1. Pound out your chicken breasts between saran wrap using a mallet to your own desired thickness. Season well with salt and pepper. Grill until cooked through.

2. Meanwhile toast the pecans or walnuts in a dry saute pan for about five to seven minutes on low tossing a few times.

3. In a food processor emulsify the mustard, honey and vinegar. Taste and adjust to your liking by adding more honey or more mustard. If too thick thin with a little more vinegar. Season with salt and pepper. For a creamy dressing add a teaspoon or two of mayonnaise. I save my empty honey bear bottles for storing my home-made dressings in. *For creamy honey-mustard in a pinch mix equal parts Ranch dressing and honey mustard.

4. Assemble your salad, start with the romaine and top with generous amounts of cranberries, walnuts and bleu cheese. Drizzle with honey-mustard and top with the grilled chicken.

Printable Recipe
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Red, White & Bleu Salad

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