GRILLED SHRIMP/CHICKEN TENDERLOINS WITH FRILLS

When the temperatures are soaring on the outskirts, I’ve no time to be spending extended time on top of my stove. I often seek out quick, easy, and delicious meals. After all, I want to secure much-needed time to enjoy the summer.

Went with that in mind this afternoon and oh, look what I managed to turn out. Grabbed hold of my grill pan and made me a few grilled shrimp and chicken tenderloins. I needed to take them to another level.

So, I made a quick kale/parsley pesto and slathered some on my grilled chicken (lime flavored). Decided to reach for some of summer’s favorites in the form of mini bell peppers. Finely chopped up those assorted hues along with diced onions, a squeeze of honey, pinch of salt and a splash of vinegar and slowly simmered.

I couldn’t resist. If I’m indulging in shrimp, I’ve to have that ‘kick’. Thus, I added finely chopped scotch bonnet peppers to the mix. Oh, those dear shrimp were super-excited. With a squeeze of fresh lime, I layered  those juicy shrimp on a bed of Jasmine rice. And, of course, I added that spicy side dish of assorted mini bell peppers.

I was on cloud nine.

 

Advertisements

I ITALIANISED MY MEAL! #FARRO SALAD/SALMON STEAK

Didn’t think twice to pair the two. It was a match made in culinary heaven. Needed to use my wholesome grains that Mother Nature gifted yours truly. Made enough farro salad the previous day. This included sautéed onions, zucchini, mini bell peppers and garlic.

FARRO SALAD
FARRO SALAD

My taste-buds were on high alert. I couldn’t wait to partake of my protein/fiber salad made from Italian pearled farro. Decided to pair same with a seafood treat and went with a favorite of mine, salmon steak. It was a tad thick, so, I made a slit  and kept the skin on.

Seared my omega fatty acid dish in a drizzle of olive oil and set aside. Then finely chopped onions were added to skillet along with chopped olives. Because I know that seafood loves acid, a generous squeeze of lime and thinly chopped lime slices and a pat of butter were added.

Returned salmon to the skillet to absorb all the delicious flavors within and to spoon on the citrus/butter sauce. Topped salmon steak with extra chopped olives and lime and garnished same with finely chopped parsley I had on hand.

FARRO SALAD AND SEARED SALMON STEAK
FARRO SALAD AND SEARED SALMON STEAK

One thing I know is that I will be revisiting this Italian treat. And, that’s for sure.

 

 

FARRO ALL THE WAY!! #PROTEIN/FIBER GALORE!

Once again, I jumped overboard. I hit the Mediterranean  coast. There, I discovered a grain that has been around for many centuries. It’s hearty and quite satisfying. Moreover, it’s loaded with an abundance of protein and fibers. Any meal that can fill me up, count me in!

I didn’t have to travel to that part of the world. Thanks to my neighborhood supermarket, I was able to fetch an atypical whole grain that has been around for eons. It’s called farro. Because of the removal of the husk, this particular version (Italian) takes approximately 20 to 25 minutes to cook and yet still holds a crunchy bite.

The beauty about farro is that it can be had either savory or sweet/hot or cold. It has a rice-like appearance and will take on any flavor that is cooked with it.  Thus, I decided to substitute my morning’s oatmeal for this ancient grain. And oh, my palate was super-excited.

I made sure to cook the sufficient grains from the previous night to do double-duty: breakfast (hot cereal)  and dinner(salad).

  • Brought 2 cups of water to a boil with a pinch of salt.
  • Rinsed 1 cup of farro under cold water and added to boiling water.
  • Stirred and allowed same to cook under low to medium heat until all the water was absorbed.

    COOKED FARRO
    COOKED FARRO

FOR BREAKFAST:

  • Added a splash of whole milk to cereal along with a splash of vanilla and sprinkle of cinnamon.
  • Sweetened with brown sugar to taste.
  • Topped cereal with fresh blueberries and strawberries.

    HOT FARRO WITH FRESH BERRIES
    HOT FARRO WITH FRESH BERRIES

FOR SALAD:

  • Sauteed mini bell peppers, onions, chopped zucchini, crushed garlic and chopped tomatoes in a drizzle of olive oil.
  • Added to cooked farro and  folded and combined all ingredients.
    FARRO SALAD
    FARRO SALAD

    Salad can be consumed warm or at room temperature. The addition of any choice protein: seafood, poultry or meat would be a great accompaniment.

 

 

 

 

ROASTED SWEET POTATO/CHICKEN SALAD

So glad that I went with the culinary ride. Hopped outside the box and decided to take my yams to another level. Cubed, drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled those nutrient packed foods with cinnamon, a pinch  of salt, and powdered ginger.

SWEET POTATOES FOR ROASTING
SWEET POTATOES FOR ROASTING

Placed them on foiled baking sheet and baked at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for approximately 35 minutes until they were crispy on the exterior creamy on the interior.

ROASTED SWEET POTATOES
ROASTED SWEET POTATOES

After cooling, those sweet and crispy treats were added to left-over bite-sized rotisserie  chicken (breast portion), a handful of Italian parsley and a few broccoli spears. For dressing, I combined:

  • a dollop of sour cream
  • light mayonnaise
  • a sprinkle of salt and black pepper
  • a splash of red wine vinegar

All ingredients were combined and ‘married’ well.

My taste buds were ‘over the moon’ with the mix of in the sweet and savory. It was like a party inside my mouth.

BRAISED THIGHS WITH SWEET GREEN PEAS

Already, I’m doing a happy dance within. I can’t wait to further indulge in this mouth-watering meal. Sampled a tad and was elated. Someone is going have a grand time tomorrow. Yes, guys, I’m yapping about my braised chicken thighs and sweet green peas.

It has been a while since I’ve gone this culinary route. My dear mom, Beryl used to stretch this choice of poultry  by adding sweet green peas to this delicious dish. After all, she had many mouths to feed. Thus, it was with great nostalgic and super-warm feelings that  I prepared and cooked this simple yet amazing meal.

I went with chicken thighs because they are loaded with great flavors. Did a rough chop into smaller portions. Marinated them overnight with:

  • salt and black pepper
  • paprika
  • crushed garlic/pimento
  • splash of balsamic vinegar

At cooking time, I brought marinated chicken thighs to room temperature and then brown them a little canola oil:

CHICKEN THIGHS BROWNING IN SKILLET
CHICKEN THIGHS BROWNING IN SKILLET

Then route vegetables were added:

CHICKEN THIGHS WITH ROOT VEGGIES
CHICKEN THIGHS WITH ROOT VEGGIES

Cold tap water was added. Then chicken and other ingredients like (fresh thyme, scotch bonnet pepper) were braised and simmered under low to medium heat. A mix of corn starch was added so as to thicken the gravy.

Sweet green peas and chopped scallion were added a few minutes before the end of the cooking time. These soaked up all the delicious flavors. I was happy.

BRAISED CHICKEN THIGHS AND SWEET GREEN PEAS
BRAISED CHICKEN THIGHS AND SWEET GREEN PEAS

ROASTED GRAPES/BROCCOLI CHICKEN SANDWICH

Wasn’t happy with the seeds in my grapes. Thought I had bought the seedless version. Decided to roast them and oh what deliciousness. Those little seeds became quite crispy and more edible. As the high heat caught them in the oven, they took on a limp-like appearance.

It was such a culinary joy to partake of the sweet and tart juices that exploded in my mouth. Be careful,  though, make sure to indulge when they are warm or come to room temperature. Roasted grapes were paired with  roasted broccoli and a light chicken breast sandwich.

My palate was so excited to devour all the goodness between a crusty roll that was overstuffed with wholesome and mouth-watering foods. With a sip of a little Merlot, I was brought to a satisfying place.

 

 

WATERMELON SHOTS + BITES

Look ye here! Look ye here! I’m having one of my best time ever! Decided to go once more with  one of the healthiest foods around. Based on nutritional factS, this fruit is loaded with great sources of  vitamin C, vitamin B6, magnesium, potassium and others.

Got a tad creative with my choice of serving. What do you know? Dusted off my cookie cutter and went to work. After all, this nifty little gadget needed to be put to work. Haven’t been baking cookies.

Went the virtuous route with my melon shots. All I needed was chunks of watermelon, freshly squeezed lime juice and a splash of water. Blended all ingredients in standing blender.

Didn’t have fresh mint on hand and decided to work with what I had. Grabbed a bit of my Italian parsley and garnish my shots of morning beverage. Once more, I was transported to in a very happy place.

CHEERS!!

 

 

 

 

 

GRILLED PINEAPPLE WITH VANILLA ICE CREAM

Couldn’t  wait to devour. As soon as vanilla ice cream hit extra-warm and decadent grilled pineapple, it began a slow melt and mingled into the delicious goodness of the tropical fruit. Made it even more delectable  by drizzling left-over pineapple rum sauce.

That took my dessert to another level. Guys, that’s what beautiful things are made of.