Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Cucumber Dill Dip

I wanted to do a healthy dip this time around and I hit the jackpot on this one. This is fat free but it does not taste like it is. So if you like cucumber, you will love this refreshing dip. Also I wanted to keep it healthy with what I dipped into it as well. The pitas are yummy prepared this way too. So belly up and enjoy, your fat cells will think that they should be singing.

Cucumber & Dill Dip
  • 2 large cucumbers
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • (2) 6 oz. containers of Greek plain non-fat yogurt
  • (1) 16 oz. container of Sour Cream fat free
  • ½ tsp. garlic powder w/ extra for sprinkling
  • ¼ tsp. ground white pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. Olive Oil, extra virgin
  • 1 Tbsp. Aged White Wine Vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh Dill, finely chopped
  • 1 package whole wheat pitas, 6 count
  • 1 can of Pam olive oil spray
Peel cucumbers and cut in half lengthwise, then scoop out seeds with a spoon and discard seeds. Cut cucumbers halves into chunks and whirl in a food processor with ½ tsp of salt. Place cucumber mash in wire mesh drain and drain for 1 hour. You need to do this step so that the dip is not to watery and the salt will help pull out the moisture.

When cucumber mash has been drained place in a large bowl and add: greek yogurt, sour cream, ½ tsp garlic powder, white pepper, olive oil, vinegar and fresh dill. Mix well then cover and chill for a few hours or overnight.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees. With a pizza cutter on a cutting board cut pitas in half, then cut each half into thirds. This will give you six triangles per pita. Repeat until all are cut. Line a large cookie sheet with aluminum foil (it makes clean up easier). Spread out pitas single file and spray with Pam olive oil spray then lightly sprinkle garlic powder on pitas. Bake at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool, you may serve them immediately with dip or store in a plastic bag for later.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Greek Orzo Salad

If you love to eat a Greek Salad you will be in love with this one. I just crave them from time to time. Well, you can have that wonderful flavor with this refreshing pasta salad. It is very easy to make and I like how refreshing and colorful it is. I always love a make ahead dish too. Mangia!

Greek Orzo Salad
  • 1 ½ cups tri-color orzo, uncooked
  • 1 cucumber, about 1 ½ cup prepared
  • ½ cup sliced pepperoncinis
  • 1/3 cup sundried tomatoes packed in oil
  • 1 cup red onion sliced into slivers
  • 4 oz. crumbled Feta cheese
  • ½ cup Kalamata olives
  • 2/3 cup white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp. garlic powder
Cook orzo pasta according to package instructions. Meanwhile peel cucumber and slice in half lengthwise, then with a tablespoon carve out seeds and discard. Then slice both halves into thin slices. Add cucumber and the following into a large bowl: slice onion, then cut sun dried tomatoes into slivers with kitchen scissors. You can buy the pepperoncinis already sliced in a jar or whole, slice them if you need to.

Mix the dressing ingredients together in a 2 cup measuring cup and whisk together well. Once orzo is cooked drain and run cool water over to cool it down and to stop cooking. Once orzo is drained well add into the large bowl and add the olives and feta, mix together well. Cover and chill for several hours or overnight.

I like to use fat free Feta, it's the only fat free cheese that I like.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Bogus Bang Bang Shrimp

I'll tell you I just love, love, love the Bang Bang Shrimp at Bonefish Grill. So, curious me, I had to try to figure out the recipe. Only one thing, I like mine a tad bit more spicier than what they make it. So here's my version. Now if you don't want want it spicier only add 1 Tbsp of the Sriracha and chili sauce, but I highly recommend 2 Tbsp. of each. You can find the Asian sauces in any store that has an extensive ethnic aisle. Yum Yum!!!

Bogus Bang Bang Shrimp!
  • 1 lb. of fresh shrimp (36/40 ct) peeled and deveined
  • ½ cup Hellman's light mayonnaise
  • 1 - 2 Tbsp. Tuong ot Sriracha sauce
  • 1 - 2 Tbsp. Sweet Chili sauce, by Maggi Taste of Asia
  • 1 tsp. rice vinegar
  • ½ cup corn starch
  • 1 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • Romaine, chopped
  • green onions, sliced thin
  • canola oil

In a large bowl mix together: mayonaisse, Sriracha, chili sauce and vinegar. Whisk together well and cover and refrigerate for later.

Peel and devein shrimp. Then place corn starch and panko bread crumbs on separate plates. Dip shrimp into corn starch lightly coating and tapping off excess. Then press shrimp down into panko bread crumbs and press them onto the top as well. You just want them randomly covered with the bread crumbs, not a thick coating. Lay on large platter as you coat and when all are done chill in refrigerator for at least 45 minutes. This will set the breading to the shrimp so that it will not fall off during cook time.

Heat oil over medium in a large nonstick skillet until you can smell the oil. If you are unsure if the oil is hot enough just drop in one crumb of panko, it's ready when it looks like it is bubbling away. Then add shrimp and cook for 4 minutes turning shrimp over halfway through. Remove with slotted spoon onto a paper lined platter to absorb excess oil. Then toss shrimp into the large bowl of prepared sauce and toss well until evenly coated. Serve in a small bowl piled high and garnish with green onion.

I recommend using 2 Tbsp of the Sriracha and chili sauce, if you're a baby about spice just cut it back to 1 Tbsp.