Greek Chicken Skewers with Tzatziki

House cleaning day/laundry day/shopping day/day at the park day means this 40 week pregnant mama has zero time to spend making and preparing dinner.  I can get the marinade done early in the day or the day before, marinate the chicken and do the tzatziki at the same time. So by the time it comes to BBQ, all I need to do is cut up some veg and make a side salad. for me, this is simple!

Cheers to the BBQ and healthy dinners!

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Ingredients: (serves 4)

For the chicken + marinade-

  • 10 boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1″ cubes
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 palm full of fresh basil, minced
  • 1 palm full of mint, minced
  • 1 palm full of parsley, minced (roughly 1-2 tbsp)
  • 1 palm full of dill, minced
  • 3 tbsp EVOO
  • 3 TBSP full fat plain greek yogurt
  • 1 lemon, juiced (About 3 tbsp)
  • salt and pepper, to taste

For the Tzatziki sauce-

  • 1 1/2C full fat plain greek yogurt
  • 1/4 red onion, grated
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • 1/2 English cucumber, grated
  • 2 tbsp mint, minced
  • 1 tbsp dill, minced
  • (If the garlic doesn’t sit in the yogurt for a little while, it can have a very strong flavour, especially if it is fresh garden garlic. If the flavours are too strong for you, I would suggest adding in 1 tbsp of honey. This can really help!)

Directions:

  1. In a medium sized bowl, or a food storage bag add all of your chicken and marinade ingredients. Let marinate for 30 minutes, up to one hour.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix together all of your tzatziki ingredients except for the DILL. Set aside and let sit for as long as your chicken is marinating.
  3. Heat your outdoor grill to just below medium heat. Start skewering your chicken on to metal skewers or pre-soaked wooden skewers. brush the skewers with the marinade, and add them to the grill.
  4. Turn once your chicken starts looking opaque. *Note- if your chicken skewers are sticking to the grill, your heat may be too high. To avoid pulling all the meat off the skewer itself, I suggest using a metal spatula and gently scraping underneath the chicken skewers to move them before you turn them with a pair of tongs.
  5. Once your chicken is no longer pink (test a large piece or use a meat thermometer and make sure the temperature reads 160F) remove from the grill.
  6. Add your dill to your tzatziki and mix together.
  7. Serve with grilled peppers + onions, your tzatziki sauce and my Fresh Dill and cucumber salad!

 

 


Grilled Flank Steak with chimichurri sauce

I have come to the realization that we eat way too many flank steaks in my household… Here’s a delicious chimichurri sauce to pair with your flank steak! I’m pretty positive this recipe is already on my blog for a taco recipe – and it’s that good that it needs to be repeated! (Also I’m happy to say the cilantro and parsley were both used from my own garden!)

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Ingredients: (serves 2-4)

For the steak-

  • 1 flank steak, tenderized using a meat mallet to the same thickness
  • 1/2 TBSP each of dried: oregano, thyme, smoked paprika, garlic powder, chili powder and coriander
  • 1/4 tsp each salt and pepper, or more to taste

For the Chimichurri sauce-

  • 1C loosely packed cilantro
  • 1C loosely packed parsley
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 shallot, peeled and rough chopped
  • 2 jalapeno peppers (remove seeds and ribs for less spice.)
  • 1 large lime or 2 small limes zested and juiced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • about 1/4c extra virgin olive oil, or enough to get it to a smooth consistency.

directions:

  1. Heat your outdoor grill to a medium heat. In a small bowl mix together your oregano, thyme, smoked paprika, garlic powder, chili powder, coriander, salt and pepper. Spread over both sides of your steak, pressing the spices in to the steak.
  2. Put your steak on the grill. Let cook for about 7 minutes on one side. Flip and continue cooking for another 5 to 7 minutes or until a meat thermometer reads 125F. Remove the steak from the grill to a cutting board, cover loosely with tin foil and let it rest for about 7-10 minutes.
  3. In a food processor or a blender, add in ALL of your sauce ingredients. blend until you get a nice partially chunky but smooth consistency.
  4. Serve with your steak! mmmmmmmmm.

Chipotle Mango BBQ’D Pork Tenderloin

The best thing about spring time is the warm weather and the sunshine (and hopefully in a day or so here BEER for me! Come on baby girl, it is time to vacate the premises!!) And what comes with warm weather, sunshine, and beer?! BBQ SEASON! Keeping your house nice and cool without heating it up more in the stinking hot sun is a truly beautiful thing. So lets get those grills started people!!

When your mother in law brings you a bunch of mangoes… you need to use those mangoes. This was a small experiment that turned out quite delicious! Its mangoes, chipotles in adobo and a few other ingredients. It is absolutely delicious! And it is a bit spicy, but it is a SMOKY spicy. I would dial back the heat to half if you’re not a spice person.

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Ingredients: (Serves 2. Use a second pork tenderloin to serve 4. Do not double the sauce recipe, the recipe makes 2 cups already!)

  • 1 pork tenderloin
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the sauce/Baste

  • 2 TBSP pureed chipotle in adobo sauce (see note at bottom of post.)
  • 2 TBSP water
  • 2 TBSP honey
  • 1 large lime, zested and juiced
  • 2 mangoes, peeled and rough chopped
  • a pinch of salt

Directions:

  1. Heat your outdoor grill to MEDIUM heat. No higher. I wouldn’t go lower unless your grill is very hot.
  2. Season your pork tenderloin with salt and pepper.
  3. In a food processor or small blender, add in all of your sauce ingredients. Blend until smooth. Put 1.4c of the sauce in a small bowl to use to baste the pork tenderloin while it cooks.
  4. Slather some sauce on your pork tenderloin and place it on the grill. This will take no longer than 20 minutes to cook through.
  5. Check on your pork tenderloin and turn it every 4 minutes or so to get nice and grilled on all sides. if you go to move your tenderloin and she is still sticking to the grill, don’t touch her. She isn’t ready to be turned over yet.
  6. Baste your tenderloin as you turn it over to cook each side, getting some beautiful grill marks. The color of the tenderloin will be a gorgeous deep orange. Baste and cook until your tenderloin reaches an internal temperature of 145F.
  7. Remove the tenderloin from the grill to a cutting board, cover with foil and let it rest for at least 7 minutes.
  8. Slice into medallions and serve with the remaining sauce on the side.
  9. Serve up with some BBQ’d seasoned carrots and some Bacon Mango Rice !

 

*Note: Whenever I open a can of chipotle in adobo, I know I will not be using the whole thing in a week normally. So I puree it all together, put it in a freezer zip lock bag and break off portions as I need from the freezer. This keeps your waste to a minimum.


Pineapple Pork Satay

This is by far one of the worst photo’s of pork satay in the whole world, but I promise you it was absolutely amazing! There’s so much flavour in the marinade and sauce! It’s a little sweet and a little spicy, with pineapples and jalapeños! This is a must try!

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Ingredients: (serves 2)

  • 1 lb pork tenderloin, trimmer of fat and thinly sliced in to long strips

Marinade/Dipping Sauce:

  • 1 1/4C Pineapple chunks
  • 2 jalapenos
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1″ ginger, peeled
  • 1 Lime, juiced and zested
  • 1C cilantro
  • 2 TBSP honey
  • 1/2 TBSP sesame oil
  • 1/2C Soy sauce
  • 1/4c EVOO
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. In a blender or a food processor, add all of your sauce/marinade ingredients and blend until smooth.  Reserve half of the sauce and set aside.
  2. In a ziplock bag or a bowl, add your pork tenderloin strips with the remaining marinade and let marinate for at least 1 hour.
  3. Once ready to cook, remove your pork from the marinade. Do not discard the marinade.
  4. Preheat your outdoor grill to a medium heat. Not too high as you do not want the thinly sliced pork to stick to the grill.
  5. Skewer your pork on to soaked wooden bamboo skewers or metal skewers.
  6. Brush your skewers with some of the remaining marinade, and then place on the grill. These will only take a few minutes on each side to cook. Once your pork is almost opaque, flip the skewers over to cook on the other side. Brush the rest of the marinade on the pork and let it cook for another couple of minutes.
  7. Remove from the grill, and serve with the reserved sauce that was NOT used to marinate your pork.
  8. Serve with rice and my Carrot Ribbon and Radish salad

Spring Flank Steak Salad

This flank steak salad sure was a hit tonight! It was once again ridiculously hot out today, so I decided that my BBQ was the best cooking source for the evening! This is loaded with flavour and fresh veggies (that I of course also grilled on the BBQ) and the “dressing” is a less intense version of a chimichurri sauce. It was actually quite refreshing.

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Ingredients:

For the steak-

  • 1 flank steak, pounded to a half inch, or at least the same thickness throughout
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground salt
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp cumin

For the “Dressing” –  you don’t HAVE to grill all of these, you can simply just puree them all together uncooked.

  • 1 Avocado, halved – grilled
  • 1/2 large bunch of cilantro, rough chopped (I did not grill this.)
  • 2 cloves garlic, grilled
  • 1 bunch of green onions, whites and greens – grilled and rough chopped
  • juice and zest of 2 limes (also grilled the limes.)
  • 1/4c EVOO
  • 1/4c water
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, grilled
  • salt and pepper, to taste

For the salad-

  • 1 head lettuce of your choice, chopped into 1″ pieces
  • Fresh peas
  • 1 leek, sliced
  • 1 green pepper, sliced

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Directions:

  1. Heat your outdoor grill to a medium heat. Pat flank steak dry with paper towel, and make small slits against the grain. Do not slice all the way through, maybe only 1/4 of an inch. In a small bowl, mix together your steak spice rub ingredients. Once mixed well, slather on both sides of the steak. Place on the BBQ. Cook for about 5-7 minutes on one side. Flip the steak over and continue cooking until a meat thermometer reads 125F. Remove the steak from the grill to a cutting board and cover it with tin foil to rest.
  2. While your steak is resting, add your halved limes, green onions, avocado, green pepper, garlic and jalapeño pepper to the grill. Let them get a nice char on both sides, and then remove them from the grill. Put the green pepper to the side, as this is not a sauce ingredient.  Place your avocado, cilantro, garlic, green onions, lime juice and zest, EVOO, water, jalapeño pepper, salt, pepper and honey in a blender or food processor. Process until nice and smooth. Taste, and season more if need be.
  3. In a skillet over medium heat, add a tbsp of EVOO. Saute your leeks and peas for a couple minutes until the leeks are softened. Remove from heat.
  4. In a large bowl, assemble your salad ingredients – lettuce, peas, green peppers and leeks.
  5. Slice your steak thinly against the grain and add it to the salad bowl. Add some dressing, and toss the salad to mix. Add more dressing if desired.

 


Juicy Chicken with a lime and cilantro sauce

My favourite dinners are the ones that are easy to make, but also fresh, healthy, and light. It’s officially grilling season, so I don’t need to dirty any pans in the kitchen for this bad boy! Lime and cilantro marinated chicken breast, topped with a fresh herb sauce – it doesn’t get much better than this!

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Ingredients: (Serves 2)

  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper

Marinade:

  • 2 small limes, zested and juiced
  • 1/4c EVOO
  • 1C loosely packed cilantro, rough chopped
  • salt and pepper

Sauce:

  • 1/2 TSP dried lemon grass, or 1″ fresh lemon grass
  • 1 large garlic clove, peeled and crushed
  • 1/2 of a shallot, about 1.5-2 tbsp rough chopped
  • 1 lime juiced and zested
  • 1/2 of a large bunch of cilantro, rough chopped (some stems okay!)
  • 1 fat TBSP honey
  • 1 TBSP China lily soy sauce
  • dash of fresh ground salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. In a ziplock freezer bag or small bowl, add your chicken breasts, lime juice and zest, salt, pepper, cilantro and EVOO. Let your chicken marinate for at least 30 minutes up to 1 hour.
  2. Preheat your outdoor grill to medium heat.
  3. Remove chicken from the marinade, and pat it completely dry with paper towel. Season both sides with salt and pepper.
  4. Place your chicken on the grill. cook on one side for about 7 minutes. The chicken will not stick to the grill once it is ready to flip. Once it is ready to flip, flip it over and continue cooking until your internal temp reaches 165F.
  5. While your chicken is cooking, get your sauce ingredients ready.
  6. In a small blender or food processor add all sauce ingredients and blend until you get a chunky or smooth consistency. Whether it is a little chunky or smooth is up to you.
  7. Remove your chicken from the grill and smother it with the sauce. Enjoy!!!

10 Spice Beer Can Chicken

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It was 29 degrees today. WOW. What an ABSOLUTELY beautiful day!!! But on super hot days like today, I don’t really feel like heating up my house any more than it already is – so I decided to BBQ outside! Tonights dinner is a super simple, yet delicious (moist) beer can chicken!!!! If you have never tried something like this, I suggest you do. Serve it up with some BBQ’D sweet potatoes, and BBQ’D whole carrots, and a home made Caesar salad.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 3-4LB whole chicken
  • 1/3c EVOO
  • 2 TBSP brown sugar
  • 2 TBSP garlic powder
  • 2 TBSP smoked paprika
  • 1 TBSP cumin
  • 1 TBSP coriander
  • 1 TBSP onion powder
  • 1 TBSP salt
  • 1 TBSP pepper
  • 1/2 TBSP cinnamon
  • 1 TSP cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 can of your favourite beer

Directions:

  1. Wash your bird thoroughly inside and out. Pat dry.
  2. In a small mixing bowl, mix together your brown sugar, garlic powder, smoked paprika, cumin, coriander, onion powder, salt, pepper, cinnamon and cayenne pepper and your evoo.
  3. Place your chicken in a LARGE bowl. Rub your seasoning paste all over the bird.
  4. Heat your outdoor grill to LOW on one side, and MEDIUM on the other side.
  5. Make sure to use some kind of drip tray safe for a BBQ to place your chicken on. Put the beer can in the chickens cavity, place standing up on the drip tray and put it on the LOW heat side of the BBQ. Close the lid. If the brown sugar on your chicken is getting black within the first 10-20 minutes of being on the grill, turn the heat down a little lower.
  6. Set a kitchen timer for 1 hour. This can take up to 90 minutes depending on the efficiency of your grill. My 4lb chicken only took about 1 hour.
  7. Once the thickest part of the chicken reads 165F, it is ready to come off the grill.
  8. Place chicken on a cutting board, let rest for 15 minutes.
  9. Once the chicken is well rested, carve and serve!