Sunday, July 28, 2013


For those of you who know me, know that tomatoes are not exactly my favorite food.  I have tried and tried to like fresh tomatoes, but there’s just something about them that I just don’t care for. 

That being said, I love tomato products, and a cooked tomato is in my opinion a great basic ingredient! 

So when a friend of our invited us to her house, a few years ago, to tour her garden and have an afternoon lunch, what I remember the most about the meal was the delicious Gazpacho Soup, a cold tomato based soup, packed full of garden fresh vegetable.

This is a great recipe for those of you who have a garden or like to visit farmers markets which are “in season” right now.  It's late July and in the Northwest we'd normally be 20 days into summer, and with the warm weather we are experiencing, this is a great cool down dinner.  The longer it sits the better it gets.


      2 chopped tomatoes (I used purple heirloom cherry tomatoes)
      1 chopped green pepper
      1 chopped red pepper
      4 chopped celery stalks, with leaves
      1/2 of a English cucumber, chopped
      1 cup chopped onion (I used red onion)
      1/2 cup chopped green onion (only the green part)
      3 minced garlic cloves
      1/2 of a sprig of cilantro, chopped
      2 tbsp parsley
      3 tbsp red wine vinegar
      2 tbsp olive oil
      1  tsp Worcestershire
      1 tsp tabasco
      2 cups tomato juice

Place all chopped vegetables in large bowl. Wisk together vinegar, oil, worcestershire, tabasco, pepper and tomato juice and pour over vegetables.  Let sit overnight in fridge and adjust seasoning in morning.

I like to add additional Worcestershire and tabasco for a bit more spice.

Chef's note: I DON'T measure, so the amount are the original amounts, I altered, as using 1/2 a cucumber, just doesn't work for me, I used the whole one!
Oh, and yeah I served it with our California Grilled Chicken Sandwich.  YUMMY!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Greek Spiced Chicken Burgers

Some people don’t like to cook during any heat, well for me, I just love to cook.  You find me in my kitchen making a coconut cake on a 95°F day. (BTW we don’t have A/C, so imagine making a cake in a 350°F with just a fan!)
Last week, I was on Pinterest looking for ideas, and came across a recipe from, and was inspired to revamp this recipe from is Euro roots.  Even Craig liked it…..
Greek  Spiced Chicken Burgers
     with Dilled Greek Lemon Yogurt
1 ½lb  Ground Chicken
3 Red Chilies' (Anaheim) seeds removed (leave em' in if you like heat!!)
3 cloves Garlic, Chopped
1 Red Onion, Finely chopped
Handful Cilantro, Chopped
1 tsp Red Chili powder
2 tsp Cumin powder
2 tsp Kabob spice
Salt to taste
½ English  cucumber sliced with skin on
8 oz Greek Yogurt
Juice of ½ lemon
1/2 small cucumber, thinly sliced and chopped
1 tablespoon of fresh garlic
Dill weed, Chopped

Slices of fresh tomato
Few leaves of fresh crunchy lettuce
For making the Chicken burger, bring together in a mixing bowl, the chicken, spices, cilantro, chilies, garlic and onion. Mix it well with your hand and form flat patties, chill until ready to grill. Grill, until completely cooked. (180°F)
Meanwhile whip together the Greek yogurt, Dill, Lemon juice and some salt. Warm the pita bread slightly. Spread inside of pita with Greek yogurt, place the lettuce right at the bottom, then place the burger and top it up with a few slices of the cucumber or tomato. Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Skinny Chicken Chow Mein

If you’ve been following for a while you’ll know that my family came for a visit a few months ago. When they were here I made a few things that made my sister think of me when she found a few websites, mainly, where I found “Skinny Chow Mein”.  From there, I developed the following recipe.  When I first made it, we only had enough for Craig and my lunch the next day. We both said WOW, this was amazing, and even better the next day.  So I made it again, and this time….even better.

Skinny Chicken Chow Mein 

16 ounces refrigerated yakisoba
2 cups celery, sliced on the diagonally
2 cups onion, diced
5 cups cabbage, shredded
8 oz Shredded Carrots
5 oz Snow Peas, chopped
1½ cups cooked chicken breast, diced
Cooking spray
2 teaspoons vegetable oil

Ingredients for Sauce:

⅓ cup plus 1 tablespoon reduced-sodium soy sauce  (6 tablespoons)
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 tablespoons garlic chili sauce
2 tablespoons water
2 cloves garlic, mined
2 teaspoons ginger (from a jar),
Fresh ground black pepper, to taste

1. Cook the noodles  for about 2-3 minutes just until soft. Do not over cook.
2. In the meantime, prep all vegetables and dice the chicken. Set aside.

3. In a small bowl, add all sauce ingredients and mix until well blended. Set aside.

4. Coat a large nonstick wok or pan with cooking spray. Heat 2 teaspoons of oil in pan.
Add celery and onions and sauté over medium-high heat for several minutes until onions become soft. Add cabbage, carrots and peas and chicken. 

Sauté another few minutes until soft.  Turn down to medium heat, add noodles and soy sauce mixture.  Stir-fry for about 2 minutes or until noodles are heated through. Stir constantly to blend everything.

Store any leftovers in the fridge for a few days.

Makes 5 servings (each serving, 1½ cups)