Lemon and Rosemary Chicken on a Bed of Mixed Greens and Olive Salad

By Ira,

This is a very easy and light meal that’s bursting with the flavors of lemon and rosemary. The more you leave the chicken in the marinade, the more pronounced these flavors will be. You can marinade it the day before or for just 15 minutes before you start cooking. Afterwards, you can grill the chicken or cook it in a skillet, then put it on top of the salad.

Serves 4 – chicken recipe adapted from Cooking at Home with Jamie Dean

Marinade:

  • 4 small chicken breasts, or 8 cutlets
  • lemon juice from 2 lemons
  • 1 tablespoon minced rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon high heat oil, such as grapeseed

Salad:

  • 2 bags mixed green salad
  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • 2 small cucumbers
  • 3/4 cup olives, green or black
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced

Dressing:

  • Juice from 1 lemon
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon minced rosemary
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • salt and pepper

If you haven’t bought cutlets, then you can cut each chicken into 2 thin cuts.

In a medium bowl, mix together all the marinade ingredients, except for the chicken.

Mix it, then add the chicken, making sure that all the chicken pieces are coated in the marinade. Cover with cling wrap and leave in the fridge. You can leave it overnight, or you can even leave it while you get the salad ready.

In a small bowl, mix together all the ingredients for the dressing.

In a large bowl, mix together all the ingredients for the salad. In a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat, add the chicken pieces, one at a time. Cook on one side for a few minutes, then the other side until they are cooked through. set it aside on a chopping board for a minute. If your skillet isn’t big enough, you can repeat with the other chicken.

Meanwhile, add the dressing to the salad and mix.

Cut the chicken pieces into 1/2 inch strips.

To serve, plate the salad, then add the chicken pieces on top.

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Angel Hair Pasta with No-cook Tomato and Basil Sauce

By Ira,

I make this every summer when the tomatoes are at their peak. It’s very important to use the best tomatoes you can find and a good quality salt. With so few ingredients, it makes a big difference to the overall taste of the dish. All you need to do is combine the chopped tomatoes with basil, garlic, and olive oil, then stir in the angel hair pasta and top it with Parmesan cheese. Very easy and delicious.

Serves 4-6

  • 5 large tomatoes or 7 medium ones
  • 2 handfuls sliced basil leaves
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Maldon sea salt or Himalayan salt preferably, or sea salt
  • freshly grounded black pepper
  • 1 pound angel hair pasta
  • Parmesan cheese to serve

Note that I like to have a generous amount of tomatoes with my pasta. If you prefer less sauce, use 4 large tomatoes.

Start by boiling the water for the pasta. Add 1 tablespoon salt before adding the pasta.  Note that it only takes 2 minutes for the angel hair pasta to cook, so add the pasta to the water when your sauce is ready.

In a large bowl, combine the diced tomatoes, basil leaves, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper. Be generous with the salt. Taste and add more accordingly. Stir and set aside until pasta cooks.

Add the angel hair pasta to the tomato mixture and mix well. Serve with a generous sprinkling of Parmesan cheese.

Spice-Rubbed Fish Tacos with Cabbage Coleslaw

By Ira,

These tacos are tangy and spicy; a great combination. You first combine some spices together and rub it on the fish, then panfry it and add it your tacos on top of the coleslaw.

Serves 6 – Adapted from Eating Well

Coleslaw

  • 1/4 cup sour cream or yogurt
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2 medium red or green cabbage, finely shredded
  • 12 corn tortillas or 6 larger flour tortillas

Spice-rubbed fish

  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 4 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 pounds cod or mahi-mahi
  • 1/2 lime
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil or canola oil

First start by preparing the coleslaw. In a large bowl, combine the sour cream or yogurt, mayonnaise, cilantro, lime zest, lime juice, sugar, salt and pepper.

Then add the cabbage and mix again. Set aside.

On a plate, combine the flour, chili powder, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper.

Add the fish and coat on one side, turn and coat well the other side.

In a large nonstick skillet over medium heat, add the oil, then the fish. Cook for a few minutes.

Gently flip and cook the other side for a few more minutes until the fish is cooked through (this depends on the thickness of your fish). Sprinkle all the fish with the juice of the 1/2 lime.

Warm the tortillas in the microwave for less than a minute, or on a dry skillet, one tortilla at a time.

To serve, place some of the coleslaw on a tortilla, followed by the fish.

Black Bean and Corn Pizza

By Ira,

This is a very easy weeknight meal. You can use store bought salsa and top it with the beans and corn, and while the pizza is cooking, you can quickly mix the salad.

Serves 4-6 – Adapted from Eating Well

  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup salsa
  • 1 cup canned black beans, rinsed
  • 1 cup fresh (about 2 ears) or frozen corn kernels
  • 3 green onions, diced
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 pound prepared or store-bought pizza dough
  • 1/2 – 1 cup shredded or torn mozzarella
  • salt and pepper

Salad

  • 1 head Romaine lettuce, diced
  • Rest of the canned black beans
  • 2 green onions, diced
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • juice from 1/2 lime
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 450F.

In a medium bowl, combine the black beans, corn, green onions, cumin, salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

Stretch out the dough to a round or a rectangle.

Spread the salsa on top. Depending on the thickness of the salsa you have, you can use 1/2 cup or 3/4 cup.

Spread the black bean mixture on top,

followed by the mozzarella.

Place in the oven and cook for 6-10 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the salad by mixing all the ingredients together.

Beef and Cabbage Stir-Fry with Peanut Sauce

By Ira,

This is a tasty stir-fry that comes together very easily.

Serves 4 – Adapted from Eating Well

Marinade

  • 3/4 pound sirloin steak, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon sriracha or hot sauce

Sauce:

  • 1/4 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 4 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon sriracha or hot sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar

Stir-fry:

  • 4 teaspoons coconut oil or canola oil (divided 2 and 2)
  • 1 10 ounce bag shredded green cabbage or 1/2 head of a cabbage, shredded
  • 2 medium carrots, cut into matchstick pieces
  • 1 red pepper, cut into matchstick pieces
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, cut fine
  • 1 cup Brown or white rice

Note: if you put the meat in the freezer for half an hour, it will be easy to slice it thinly. You can also increase the amount of beef to 1 pound.

Start by cooking the rice according to package directions.

In a small bowl, mix together all the marinade ingredients and set aside. You can marinade the beef up to 1 hour in advance, but even 10 minutes is enough.

In another small bowl, mix together all the sauce ingredients and set aside.

In a wok or large non-stick skillet, heat 2 teaspoons of the oil over medium-high heat, add the meat, discard the marinade, and stir-fry until the meat is cooked. Transfer it to a plate, cover it with foil, and set aside.

In the same wok or skillet, add 2 teaspoons of the oil, over medium-high heat. Add the onion and carrots and stir-fry for 2 minutes.

Add the red pepper and stir-fry for 1 minute.

Add the cabbage and garlic, and stir-fry for 2 minutes.

Add the meat to the cabbage mixture,

followed by the sauce (mix it once more before adding it in). Serve it with the rice.

Portobello-Balsamic Burgers with Blue Cheese and Caramelized Onions

By Ira,

The Portobello mushrooms are marinated in balsamic vinegar, garlic, and fresh rosemary which makes them very delicious. After cooking them, they are topped with blue cheese and caramelized onions. I recommend you use fresh rosemary instead of the dried one for this meal. You can marinade the mushrooms in the morning, but you can also do that just before you cook dinner.

Serves 4 – Adapted from a recipe from Emeril Lagasse

Caramelized onions:

  • 1 teaspoon butter or olive oil
  • 1 large sweet onion, thinly sliced into rounds
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh rosemary, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • salt and pepper

Portobello mushroom burgers

  • 4 Portobello mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped finely
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, minced
  • 1 teaspoon butter or olive oil
  • blue cheese crumbles or slices
  • salt and black pepper
  • 4 whole wheat burger rolls

Salad:

  • 1 bag of mixed greens
  • 1 avocado
  • lemon juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt

In a medium skillet over medium heat, add the butter or oil, then the onions, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper, and rosemary.

Cook until the onions start to caramelize, about 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Set them aside.

Meanwhile, cut the stalks off the mushrooms. Add them to a plate, caps side down, and divide the balsamic vinegar, garlic cloves, and rosemary equally among the 4 mushrooms. Set it aside until the onions finish cooking.

You can cook the mushrooms in the same skillet as the onions (2 at a time), or you can use a separate larger skillet (more washing up!). Add butter or oil to the skillet over medium heat, and add the mushrooms caps side down. Cook on one side for a few minutes, flip and cook the other side. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

While the mushrooms are cooking, prepare the salad by mixing all the ingredients in a large bowl.

Cut the burger rolls and toast them slightly under the broiler. On each roll, add a portobello burger,

top it with the blue cheese,

then the caramelized onions. Serve it with the salad.

Hoisin Glazed Chicken Wraps with Romaine Lettuce and Cucumber

By Ira,

This meal comes together very quickly and is very delicious. You can even prepare any leftover wraps, wrap them in cling wrap, and have them cold the next day for lunch.

Serves 4-6 – Adapted from Bon Appetit

  • 2 teaspoons oil such as canola
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 2-inch long strips
  • 6 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 bunches green onions, diced
  • 1/2 bunch fresh cilantro, minced
  • 2-4 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 6 flour tortillas
  • 2 bunches romaine lettuce
  • 1 large cucumber, or 2-3 small small ones, cut into 2-inch long strips

Note: some hoisin sauce brands are thicker and more concentrated than others. You can start by adding 2 tablepsoons hoisin sauce, taste it and then increase the amount accordingly.

Heat oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat, then add the chicken, and stir until almost cooked about 5-7 minutes.

Then add the green onions and stir-fry for 2 minutes.

Then add the cilantro and garlic and stir-fry for 1 more minute.

Add 2 tablespoons water and the hoisin sauce.

Stir for 1 more minute.

Warm the tortillas either in the microwave for a few seconds, or heat them on a dry skillet.

To assemble, place the romaine lettuce and cucumber (divided into 6) on each tortilla.

Then add the chicken, wrap and enjoy.