Posts Tagged ‘Tomato’

Chicken Gyros

Now that I have mastered pita bread, next step is to come up with new ways to use it!

These gyros were a big hit on the cooking board I frequent a few months ago and now I’m jumping on the bandwagon.  I used the recipe from Elly Says Opa! – it’s just wonderful!  So simple, but so incredibly flavorful!

I made my own version of ‘tzatziki sauce’ that would better suit our tastes and dairy-free life – it is listed below.  If you are looking for an authentic tzatziki sauce recipe, try this one (also from Elly Says Opa!).

For the chicken:
1lb. Chicken breasts (cut into pieces)
4 Cloves garlic, smashed
Juice of 1 lemon
2t. Red wine vinegar
2T. Olive oil
2T. Plain yogurt (I used dairy free sour cream)
1T. Dried oregano
Salt and pepper to taste

Bella’s ‘fake-out tzatziki sauce’:
1 Cucumber, peeled, seeded and squeezed dry
1/2C. Dairy free sour cream
2T. Fresh squeezed lemon juice
1T. Olive Oil
Salt and pepper to taste

To finish the gyros:
Sliced tomatoes
Sliced raw onions
Pita bread

Combine garlic, lemon juice, vinegar, oil, yogurt (or sour cream), and oregano in a bowl.  Add the chicken and rub the marinade in.  Cover and refrigerate for about an hour.

Preheat a grill pan on the stove over medium high heat.  Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper on both sides, and then broil until cooked through, about 5 minutes per side, depending  what size/type chicken you are using.  Allow the chicken to rest for a few minutes before slicing into strips.

Top the pita with the chicken, tzatziki, tomatoes and onions.  Enjoy!

Husband Rating – 4.5 out of 5 – “I love the Christopher-friendly tzatziki sauce!”


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As I’m sure you’re all aware by now, my darling Husband can’t eat dairy.  Poor guy.

About two weeks ago we went out to dinner and I ordered this dish.  It was so good and I kept wishing I could just give him a forkfull to taste how wonderful it was!  So, I decided to try my best to re-create the dish using dairy free ingredients.  I must say, it was quite good!  The trick is to use the silken tofu instead of the regular kind…it purees up nicely and was super creamy.

Of course, you can just substitute heavy cream if you don’t have any dairy issues.


3/4C. Silken Tofu
3/4C. Plain Soy Milk
4 Cloves Garlic
2C. Tomato Sauce (I used one that had basil already in it)
3C. Veggies of your choice (I used shallots, carrots, zucchini, yellow squash and broccoli)
3/4lb. Shrimp, peeled and de-veined
1T. Olive Oil
1lb. Pasta of your choice (I like farfalle)
Salt and Pepper to taste

In a blender mix garlic, tofu and soy milk until very smooth – about 45 seconds.  Stir in tomato sauce and set aside.

Prepare pasta according to package directions.

100_2278While the pasta is cooking chop all veggies into bite-size pieces and saute in olive oil until just cooked (do not overcook).

Add shrimp during the last 2 minutes of cooking.  Then, add half of the soy tomato mix and stir to warm completely.

Add the other half of the soy tomato mix to the drained pasta.  Then, add the pasta to the veggies and mix thoroughly.

Enjoy with a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese.

Husband Rating – 3.5 out of 5 – “All these veggies scare me…but the sauce is good!”

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Summer Orzo Salad

While searching for a side dish to go with the beer can hens I came across this in my Google Reader from Apple A Day.  I LOVE orzo and was very excited to try it.  I’m so glad I did.  It was wonderful! I made a few small tweaks – they are in parenthesis.


4C. Chicken Broth (I used vegetable broth b/c my vegetarian brother was dining with us)
1 1/2C. Orzo
1 (15-ounce) Can Garbanzo Beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2C. Grape Tomatoes, halved
3/4C. Chopped Red Onion (I used green onions b/c I prefer the milder flavor)
1/2C. Chopped Fresh Basil Leaves
1/4C. Chopped Fresh Mint Leaves (did not use)
3/4C. Vinaigrette dressing (I used an olive oil basil vinaigrette)
S&P to taste

Bring broth to a boil in a large pot.  Add the orzo and cook according to package directions.  Drain, rinse with cool water and transfer to a large bowl.

Toss the orzo with the beans, tomatoes, onion, basil, mint, and enough vinaigrette to coat.

Season the salad, to taste, with salt and pepper, and refrigerate to let the flavors come together.  Remove a few minutes before serving.

Husband Rating – 3 out of 5 – “Good, but not quite my thing.”

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Caprese Salad

100_2042While at the store picking up ingredients for our Mother’s Day lunch with Hubby’s family I came across these fabulous looking tomatoes.  I knew I needed to get a couple and do something with them.

Caprese salad is one of my favorites because it is so incredibly simple and incorporates two of my very favorite things…fresh basil and fresh mozzarella cheese.  You can’t go wrong!


2 Large Tomatoes
1 Ball Fresh Mozzarella Cheese
6 Leaves Fresh Basil
Drizzle of Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper to taste

Wash and dry tomatoes.  Slice into 1/4″ rounds and arrange on a large platter.

Slice mozarella cheese and top tomatoes with cheese.

Chiffonade basil leaves and sprinkle over tomatoes and cheese.

Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper, and you’re done!

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Porcupine Meatballs

The other day the hubby and I were walking through our apartment complex and I got a whiff of my childhood.  It smelled exactly like my Mom’s porcupine meatballs.  I knew I had to make these, and soon!  I called Mom and got the recipe.  Man, these things couldn’t be simpler and they’re so darn tasty!


1lb Ground Beef
1/2C Long Grain White Rice
3 Cans Campbells Tomato Soup (I like the low sodium)
Dash of Worcestershire Sauce
Black Pepper to taste

Mix ground beef, rice and black pepper.  Form into balls and brown in a large skillet.

In a separate bowl combine soup, one and a half cans of water and Worcestershire sauce.

Once the meatballs are browned on all sides (they will not be cooked all the way, that’s ok).  Dump in the soup mix and simmer on low for about a 45 minutes (stirring and flipping the meatballs occasionally) until the meat is fully cooked and the sauce has reduced down by half.


Here’s why they’re called porcupine meatballs – as they cook the rice starts to poke out and they look like little porcupines.

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