Apple, Gorgonzola, and Bacon …. Salad

So … the bacon caught your attention didn’t it ?? It also slightly distracts you from the word salad. Do not let the fact that this sounds healthy fool you. It’s ridiculously delicious and easy to make. Don’t worry about the dressing either …. because you can make your own if you’d like. I’ll post that recipe here on this post as well. It makes a great summer dinner. You can throw some cubed chicken on this puppy as well 😉

 

Apples-and-Bacon-with-Maple-Vinaigrette

Ingredients: (serves two hungry people)

  • 4 Cups Baby Spinach
  • 8 Slices of Bacon fried till crispy, and then crumbled
  • 3 Medium Red Apples of choice, chopped
  • *optional* 8 to 10 Strawberries
  • 3/4 Cup Chopped Walnuts
  • 3/4 Cup crumbled Gorgonzola Cheese, or Feta may be used as well.

Dressing:

  1. 1/2 Cup Olive Oil
  2. 4 Teaspoons Golden or White Balsamic Vinegar
  3. 2 Teaspoons Dijon Mustard
  4. *optional*  1/2 teaspoon Stone Ground Mustard
  5. 2 Tablespoons of Real Maple Syrup …. you can use the others but its sweeter so be prepared
  6. Salt and Pepper to taste
  7. Mix in a small mason jar or anything you have for dressing and shake shake shake …. boom.

Because you don’t need to be a rocket scientist to make a salad , my only instructions will be …. fry that bacon up first and set aside. Mix all the dressing ingredients … shake and refrigerate. Then throw all that good salad stuff together and put as much dressing on as you like. You can always make more ….. and you will because its soooooooo good.

 

Coconut Curry Mussels

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I enjoy Thai food. I mean who doesn’t ???

This is a mild dish that is not only plenty of delicious fresh mussels, but kinda doubles as a soup too. It has wonderful flavors of smooth subtle coconut milk curry, with hints of ginger, lime, and shallots. Topped off with fresh chopped cilantro …. and served with baguette slices. Heaven in a bowl.

Ingredients : (serves 4 as a meal – 6 to 8 as an appetizer)

  • 2-1/2 lbs of fresh cleaned and de-bearded  mussels
  • 2 Tbsps of Canola oil
  • 3/4 Cup Diced Shallots
  • 2 Tbsps Minced Garlic
  • 2 Diced Red Bell Peppers
  • 1/3 Cup Red Curry Paste
  • 2 Tsps Fresh Grated Ginger
  • 1/8 Tsp. Red Pepper Flakes
  • 2 Can of Coconut Milk (15oz cans)
  • 2 Tbsps Fresh Lime Juice
  • Cup of Cilantro for chopping and sprinkling just before serving
  • salt to taste if desired
  • Lime Wedges for serving
  • Baguette for the soup left over

 

Directions :

  1. In a 4-quart pot over medium heat, warm the canola oil. When the oil is shimmering, add the shallots and bell pepper and sauté until the shallots are translucent and the bell pepper is soft, (3 to 4 minutes.)
  2. Add the curry paste, garlic, ginger and red pepper flakes and cook for 30 seconds. Add the coconut milk,  and lime juice and bring a boil.
  3. Add the mussels to the pan, discarding any that do not close to the touch. Cover the pan and steam the mussels until they open, lightly stir occasionally so they cook evenly, 4 to 6 minutes. Discard any unopened mussels. Season to taste with salt.
  4. To serve, spoon the mussels into  soup bowls, ladle some of the broth over them and sprinkle with the cilantro. Serve with lime wedges alongside.

 

Eggplant Pizzas

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Pizza like deliciousness without the carbs 🙂

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium to large eggplant
  • salt
  • olive oil
  • dried Italian seasoning
  • fresh chopped basil leaves (about 2 tablespoons)
  •  Parmesan cheese
  • shredded mozzarella cheese
  • chopped pepperoni (or any other chopped topping you may prefer)

Sauce:

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves finely chopped
  • 1 can (14.5 oz.)  petite diced tomatoes with liquid (or use 2 cups peeled and diced fresh tomatoes)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 tsp oregano

Directions:

  1. Cut off both ends of the eggplant; then cut it into 3/4 inch thick slices (trying to make them the same thickness!)  Put the eggplant pieces on a double layer of paper towels and sprinkle both sides generously with salt.  Let the eggplant sit with the salt on it for about 30 minutes to draw out the liquid.
  2. Preheat oven to 375*
  3. While the eggplant sits, make the sauce.  Heat 2-3 tsp. olive oil  and saute the finely chopped garlic just until it becomes fragrant.  (Don’t let it brown.)  Add the petite diced tomatoes, tomato paste, dried Italian seasoning, and dried oregano and let the sauce cook at a low simmer until it’s thickened, breaking up the tomatoes with a fork as it cooks.  (Add water if needed, a few tablespoons at a time as the sauce cooks, keeping it hot by simmering at very low heat until it’s needed for the eggplant slices.)
  4. After 30 minutes, wipe the eggplant dry with paper towels (this also removes most of the salt.)  Spray a roasting sheet with olive oil or non-stick spray, lay eggplant slices on, brush the tops of the eggplant with olive oil, and sprinkle with dried Italian seasoning.  Roast the eggplant about 22-25 minutes (not so long that the slices become mushy and lose their shape)
  5. After 25 minutes or when eggplant pieces are done, remove eggplant from the oven and turn oven setting to broil.
  6. Spread parm cheese first , then a few tablespoons of sauce on the top of each eggplant slice, sprinkle with thin basil slices (if using) and top with a generous amount of mozzarella cheese and topping of choice. (pepperoni is best !)
  7. Put pizzas under the broiler until the cheese is melted and slightly browned. Enjoy !!!!!!

Sun Dried Tomato and Goat Cheese stuffed Chicken Breast

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Lover of sun dried tomatoes and goat cheese here. This recipe is a crowd pleaser. The wonderful flavors combined in this recipe make me want to lick my plate !!! It isn’t difficult to make and it is worth the little time it takes !! Thank you My Recipes for the suggestion !!!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes (not the kind in oil)
  • 1 cup boiled water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup shallots finely chopped (use red onion if you cant get shallots)
  • 3- 1/2 minced garlic cloves ( about 1 teaspoon jar minced)
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped basil
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 thick chicken breasts
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 teaspoons corn starch
  • 2 teaspoons water

Directions:

  1.   Combine boiling water and sun dried tomatoes in a bowl; cover and let stand 30 minutes or until soft. Drain and finely chop.
  2. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add 1/3 cup shallots, sugar, and garlic; cook 4 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring frequently. Spoon into a bowl; stir in 1 1/2 teaspoons vinegar.
  3. Combine chopped tomatoes, shallot mixture, cheese, basil, and 1/4 teaspoon salt, stirring well.
  4. Cut a horizontal slit through thickest portion of each chicken breast half to form a pocket. Stuff about 2 tablespoons cheese mixture into each pocket. Sprinkle chicken evenly with 1/2 teaspoon salt and black pepper.
  5. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in pan over medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook 6 minutes on each side or until done.
  6. Remove chicken from pan; cover and keep warm.
  7. Add broth, remaining shallots, 2 tablespoons vinegar, and thyme; bring to a boil. Combine cornstarch and water, stirring with a whisk. Add cornstarch mixture to pan; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute or until sauce is slightly thick, stirring constantly. Serve sauce over chicken. And enjoy enjoy !!

Meatball Stuffed Spaghetti Squash

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If you have never had spaghetti squash … don’t knock it until you try it. I love it. It is delicious if cooked properly and stuffed with the right stuffs. I made this dish recently and I plan on making this a again and again !! I didnt put specific amounts in this recipes because some people will want more or less and it wont matter how much you add 🙂

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium spaghetti squash (or just 1 if serving just 2 people)
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • your favorite marinara sauce
  • your favorite meatballs ( I make mine smaller for this dish )
  • Parmesan cheese
  • shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400*

  1. Cut squash in half. Be careful it has very tough skin. (microwave for 2 minutes if you are having a hard time )
  2. Scoop out all the seeds and pulp leaving a very thick wall.
  3. Rub inside and out with olive oil. (Just enough to coat dont go crazy or it will get soggy)
  4. Generously salt and pepper the squash
  5. Place on a cookie sheet face up in the oven for 45 minutes (this gives you time to make meatballs:) )
  6. When done remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes. (You MUST let it cool! )
  7. Take a fork and scrap in all directions to make spaghetti (not too hard you want to leave a small amount of wall and not break the skin)
  8. Add a little parm , then meatballs, then some sauce, and then top with mozzarella cheese.
  9. Place back in the oven on broil until cheese is melted and browning.
  10. Remove from oven and omg enjoy !!!

Chicken Piccata

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Chicken Piccata is easy to make and it is so good for being so simple. If you enjoy chicken and lemon this a definite must try. Its also good for anyone staying away from carbs. This dish can have many sides from asparagus, to rice or just a side salad.

Ingredients:

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper
  • flour for dredging
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 5 tablespoons real butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 4 tablespoons of capers
  • 5 tablespoons of fresh chopped parsley * optional*

Directions:

  1. Season the flour with salt and pepper, and slice the chicken breasts in half , long ways to get cutlets.
  2. Dredge the chicken slices in the seasoned flour. Shake off.
  3. Heat (on medium) the oil, garlic  and butter in a heavy frying pan, and add  the chicken pieces to the pan.
    Cook for 3 to 4 minutes on each side over medium heat, until the chicken is lightly browned and cooked through.
  4. Keep the chicken warm while you prepare the sauce by placing it on a plate covered with foil.
  5. Add the wine to the pan and cook over high heat until reduced by half. This can take up to 10- 15 minutes.
  6. Add the lemon juice and chicken broth to the pan and bring to a boil.
  7. Add the butter and using a whisk blend it into the sauce.
  8. Stir in the capers and parsley and season with salt and pepper.
  9. Return all of the cooked chicken to the frying pan, and heat in the sauce.
    Serve hot.   Enjoy !!