Fleur de Lis

Fleur de Lis

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Thursday, July 20, 2017

Red Apple, Cilantro & Roasted Onion Salad Dressing

I'm always ready to try new salad dressing recipes. This unique salad dressing is courtesy of King's Olive Oil Company. 

I was intrigued by the combination of flavors listed but decided to give it a try. I'm very glad I did. I made a salad from red leafy lettuce, strips of multicolored bell peppers, and cucumbers. Of course, you can add the veggies you like. These are the ones I had on hand tonight.

The Red Apple Balsamic has such a great aroma and has a delicate sweet apple flavor which is fruitier than most balsamics.  The Cilantro and Roasted Onion Olive Oil balances the robust flavor of cilantro with the sweet mellow taste of roasted onions.

This salad dressing recipe is probably the easiest one you'll ever make!

Using a plastic bowl with a lid or a glass cruet, add equal parts of Red Apple Balsamic Vinegar and Cilantro and Roasted Onion Olive Oil.

Shake well until emulsified. Pour over salad and mix well. Serve immediately .



Tuesday, July 18, 2017

One Skillet Chicken with Garlicky Mushroom Cream Sauce

I was wandering around the world wide web a few weeks ago and came across this recipe from The Little Spice Jar.  I knew from reading through the recipe that this would be a meal we would love. I prepared it tonight, with a few changes, and this one is a definite keeper for the regular rotation. An added bonus? ONE SKILLET MEAL!

The mushrooms are cooked first in Garlic Infused Olive Oil. The garlicky olive oil browns the mushrooms and coats them to add so much extra garlic flavor.

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (or thighs)
salt and pepper
1 cup chicken broth
1 T. minced garlic
½ t. red pepper flakes
½ t. dried thyme
2 T. garlic infused olive oil
8 ounces baby Bella (cremini) mushrooms, sliced
⅓ cup finely diced shallots

2 T. butter
¼ cup heavy cream

Using a mallet, pound down the chicken breasts/thighs into ½ inch thickness. Sprinkle a pinch of salt and pepper on both sides of the chicken.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in an oven-safe skillet (I used my largest cast iron skillet to help give a great brown crust) over medium high heat. Add the mushrooms and allow to brown for 3-4 minutes stirring as required to brown both sides. Remove the mushrooms to a plate (use one large enough to remove chicken as well).

While the mushrooms are sauteeing, combine the chicken broth, minced garlic, red pepper flakes, and dried thyme in a small bowl.

After removing the mushrooms from the skillet, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil on medium high heat. Add the chicken and allow to brown on both sides for 4-5 minutes per side. The chicken will finish cooking in the oven. Remove the chicken to plate.

While the chicken cooks, preheat the oven to 375ºF.
Add the shallots to the skillet along with the chicken broth mixture. Using a whisk, scrape the bottom of the pan so all the brown bits are loosened. Let sauce simmer and reduce for about 8-10 minutes or until about ⅓ cup of the sauce remains. Make sure you reduce the sauce so your sauce will thicken properly.

When the sauce has thickened, remove from the heat and add the butter and whisk until it melts completely. Next, add the heavy cream and mushrooms, and whisk to combine. Place the skillet back over the flame for just 30 seconds, do not allow the sauce to boil. Remove from heat, add the chicken back into the pan and drizzle the sauce over the chicken. Place the skillet in the oven for 5-8 minutes or until the chicken is completely cooked through to an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.

Since this dish has thyme as an ingredient, I garnished the plate with a few sprigs of fresh thyme.

If you're not watching carbs, serve over rice or mashed potatoes!


Monday, July 17, 2017

Peanut Butter Cheesecake

Sometimes people tell me they're too intimidated by cheesecakes to attempt to bake one. Here's a great one to ease you into the process. No springform pans, no water bath, just a creamy peanut butter filling in a premade Oreo crust.

Top with either chocolate and/or peanut butter chips or chocolate sauce.

2 packages (8 oz.) Philadelphia Cream Cheese softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 t. vanilla
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
3 T. milk
2 eggs
1 Oreo pie crust

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Beat first three ingredients together with a mixer until well blended. Add peanut butter and milk; mix well.

Add eggs; mix just until blended.

Pour into crust.

Bake 40 minutes or until center is almost set. Cool completely. Refrigerate at least 3 hours before serving.

Top with chocolate and/or peanut butter chips.

Cream Cheese, Spinach & Sun Dried Tomato Stuffed Pork Chops

For this dish, you can use either pork or chicken. Publix had butterflied pork chops on sale so that decision was made. If you can't find butterflied pork chops or chicken breasts, it's a simple task to make your own. If you purchase thick cut pork chops or chicken breasts, run your knife along the thickest part and cut a 2 - 3-inch long pocket without cutting all the way through. Now you have a nice pocket to hold all the delicious stuffing.

Let's begin with the stuffing:

4 oz. softened cream cheese
1/2 cups roughly chopped baby spinach
3 T. chopped sun dried tomatoes
1 t. minced garlic
1/2 t. dried Italian Seasoning
3 T. grated Parmesan cheese
salt and black pepper to taste

In a small bowl, thoroughly combine all ingredients. Set aside.

Salt and pepper both sides of the pork chops.

 Divide the stuffing between either two or four pork chops. I wanted an overly stuffed pork chop, so I only used two.

Gently fold the pork chops over to enclose the stuffing and secure with toothpicks.

In a large skillet, add 3 T. Olive Oil and 3 T. butter. Heat over medium heat. When butter begins to bubble, add the pork chops to the skillet. Reduce heat to low. As the pork chops cook, gently spoon the butter/oil mixture over the top of the chops. This helps to keep the pork moist. I cooked these 7 - 8 minutes on each side. Depending on how thick the pork chops are, adjust your cooking time accordingly. 

When cooking pork chops, the internal temperature should reach 145 degrees F. When taking the temperature of stuffed pork chops, it is vital to use the thermometer in the thickest part of the meat as the stuffing may heat up faster than the pork. 

Don't forget to remove the toothpicks before serving!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Spicy Chicken Fajita Soup

If you like Chicken Fajitas, here's a soup with all the great flavors you'll be served at your local Mexican restaurant. When I think of fajitas, I immediately have a mental vision of a sizzling platter of well-seasoned chicken and colorful vegetables.....and of course, the black beans and rice served on the side. With a little chopping for the veggies, while the chicken cooks in a rich chicken stock, this soup can be on the table within an hour. It's also easy to add extra chicken, a few extra cups of stock, and a little more veggies to feed as large a group as you can handle.

For the HEAT in this dish, I went big.  Go big or go home, right? Follow the link to learn about Baklouti Green Chili Oil. Yes, this oil is very hot, but using it to saute' the vegetables adds a nice dimension without a mouth blistering heat.

10 cups chicken stock
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts (or thighs)
2 T. Baklouti Green Chili Oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
1/2 yellow bell pepper, chopped
1/2 orange bell pepper, chopped
1 T. chopped garlic
1 t. salt
1 15 oz. black beans, rinsed and drained
1 15 oz. fire roasted diced tomatoes
1 fajita seasoning packet
1/2 cup yellow rice

Bring the stock to a simmer in a large Dutch oven. Add chicken and simmer chicken until cooked through. Remove from stock.

In a large skillet, heat Baklouti Green Chili Oil over medium heat. Add onions, peppers, and garlic. Cook, stirring frequently, for 5 - 7 minutes until vegetables begin to soften. I love those beautiful colors and the aroma is intoxicating.

Next stir in the salt, seasoning packet, beans, and tomatoes.

While the vegetables are cooking, chop the cooked chicken. Add the vegetables and the chopped chicken back into the stock.

Bring to a simmer. Add the yellow rice and let cook 20 - 25 minutes until rice is tender.

Serve immediately with your favorite toppings such as sour cream, queso fresco, salsa, avocado, etc.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Canadian Bacon and Bell Pepper Pizza cooked on cast iron pizza pan

So what do you do when you don't want a frozen or delivery pizza and you don't want to take the time to make your own dough? You go to your fully stocked pantry (you have one don't you?) and assemble ingredients from what you have on hand.  Twenty minutes later you have a wonderful, piping hot meal.

Speaking of what you have on hand, here's what I used:

1 package Martha White Pizza crust mix (prepared according to package directions)
1 jar Ragu Pizza Sauce
1/2 cup diced Canadian Bacon
1/3 cup multicolored bell pepper, diced
dried red pepper flakes
dried Italian seasoning
1/2 cup shredded Italian blend cheese
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese.

Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Spray a pizza pan with non-stick spray.

Place dough ball on pizza pan. Gently spread pizza dough to fit the pizza pan, making sure there are no holes or thin spot. Prick dough several times with a fork. Place in oven for 5 minutes or so. 

Remove from oven and spread the desired amount of pizza sauce on crust. Add Canadian bacon and peppers.

Sprinkle with red pepper flakes and dried Italian seasoning.

Top with cheese and bake for 10 - 12 minutes until crust is cooked and cheese is browned and bubbling.

Let cool for a few minutes before slicing.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Rosemary & Garlic Grilled Turkey Tenderloin and Vegetable Kebabs

Two of my favorite flavors are used in this recipe.  Garlic and rosemary.  I mean seriously, who can't love garlic and rosemary? Using Garlic Infused Olive Oil along with Rosemary Olive Oil makes an extremely flavorful marinade.  Turkey isn't just for lunch meat and Thanksgiving, you know. A turkey breast tenderloin coated and marinated overnight with a few sprigs of fresh rosemary and some chopped garlic gives is our starting point for this delicious meal.

1 lb. turkey breast tenderloin
2 T. Garlic Infused Olive Oil
2 T. Rosemary Olive Oil
1 T. chopped garlic
1 t. salt
1 t. freshly ground black pepper 
3 sprigs fresh rosemary

Place the turkey tenderloin in a large Ziploc bag or in a glass bowl. Pour the olive oils over the turkey and turn to coat.

Top with fresh garlic, salt, and pepper. Place the fresh rosemary on top and/or bottom of the turkey.

Place in refrigerator for a few hours or overnight.

You can choose whichever vegetables you like.  Here's what I used.

Baby Bella Mushrooms
Yellow Onion
Green, Yellow, Orange, Red Bell Peppers
Yellow Squash
Cherry Tomatoes

Cut turkey and vegetables in as close to the same sized pieces as possible. Thread on skewers in whatever order you like. 

Preheat the gas grill or prepare charcoal grill for cooking.

Place skewers on grill and turn them occasionally as turkey and vegetables cook. The turkey needs to reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.

Place skewers on plates, drizzle with a little additional rosemary and/or garlic olive, and lightly salt and pepper before serving.

Isn't that a gorgeous meal? Healthy, low-carb, and FLAVORFUL.  What more could you ask for?

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Lolly's Summertime Grilled Chicken Salad

What to call a chicken salad that includes grilled chicken? Grilled chicken chicken salad? Chicken salad with grilled chicken? You see my dilemma.

I asked my friends on Facebook and took all their suggestions to heart. This seemed to be the best combination of them to accurately describe this delicious salad.

The boneless and skinless chicken thighs are grilled after a time spent marinating in a combination of Limonato Olive Oil and Sicilian Lemon White Balsamic Vinegar. These flavors along with the smokiness from a charcoal grill will give you a chicken salad that is very unique. 

Combine 4 T. Limonato Olive Oil with 2 T. Sicilian Lemon White Balsamic Vinegar in a large bowl with 1 t. salt and 1/2 t. freshly ground black pepper. Add 4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for a few hours.

Prepare your gas or charcoal grill. When the grill is hot, place chicken on grill and cook chicken until internal temp of chicken reaches 165 degrees F.

Remove from grill, cover with foil, and let cool for 10 - 15 minutes or so.

Using a sharp knife, cut chicken into 1/2 inch cubes. Place the chicken in a large bowl that will allow room for you to mix the chicken salad together easily. Add in 1 small chopped green bell pepper and 1/4 cup slivered almonds.

In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together 1/2 - 3/4 cup mayonnaise (I used Duke's), salt and pepper to taste, juice of 1/2 lemon, 1 T. Limonato Olive Oil , 1 t. Sicilian Lemon Whte Balsamic Vinegar.

Pour dressing over cubed chicken, peppers, and almonds. Gently fold in dressing to complete coat chicken mixture. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

You can simply place on a bed of curly leaf lettuce for a great summer salad topped with chopped chives, fill a hollowed out tomato for an elegant luncheon meal, or make one great chicken salad sandwich on your favorite bread or croissant!

Taco Tuesdays: Spicy Chipotle Taco Stuffed Peppers

Calling all Spicy Food Lovers! Here's how this recipe came to be: 1) These gorgeous, fresh, colorful bell peppers called to me from the Produce Department at Sam's; 2) Sweet Harold LOVES stuffed peppers, and 3) I was ready to develop a Taco Tuesday recipe that didn't include carb filled tortillas or taco shells OR a rice filling!

These beauties pack some serious heat, but you can adjust the flavor level to be suit your taste. The chipotle flavor comes from two sources:  one is Chipotle Olive Oil which is used to saute' the onions and to coat the peppers before cooking and the second is from canned chipotles in adobo sauce. Yes, that's what I'm talking about!

This recipe used 2 1/2 peppers.  lol The number of peppers you'll need will be based upon the size of the peppers. The filling can easily be doubled. Such a great meal for entertaining as well.  Let's get cooking!

2 - 4 multicolored bell peppers, sliced horizontally through the stem (seeds and membranes removed)
2 T. chipotle olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spread a little of the olive oil in the bottom of an 11 x 7 baking dish. Using your hands, coat the inside and outside of peppers with the remaining olive oil. Place in oven for 5 - 7 minutes.

While the peppers pre-cook, prepare the filling:

1 - 2 T. chipotle olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 lb. ground chuck
1 - 2 T. chili powder
1 t. ground cumin
1 t. granulated garlic
1/2 t. ground coriander
1 t. salt
1/2 t. freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup salsa or Picante sauce
1 - 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, minced (here's where you can adjust the heat level!)
1/2 cup shredded Mexican blend cheese

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat and add onions. Cook, stirring frequently until onions begin to soften. Add ground chuck, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, and cook until no longer pink.

Add all the seasonings, and continue cooking, until seasonings are fragrant, about 4 - 5 minutes. Stir in salsa and chipotle peppers. Sprinkle with the cheese, turn off heat, and stir until cheese is melted. Remove from heat.

Carefully spoon filling into halves of peppers mounding filling slightly. When peppers are filled, place in oven and bake for 20 - 22 minutes.

I like to leave them a little crunchy to mimic the crunch of the taco shell.

Instead of adding all the typical taco toppings on top of the peppers, I chose to add shredded cheddar, diced jalapenos, and shredded lettuce to the plates to allow the diners to add the toppings as they ate and as they chose.

A dollop of sour cream with cilantro on top of the peppers does add a little eye appeal!

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Mexican Fiesta Table Setting

Yesterday, we celebrated my daughter and son-in-law's birthday. They chose enchiladas, refried beans, guacamole, etc. for the menu.  Below are pictures of the table!

The table covering is a bright, colorful Piñata theme piece of material from Hobby Lobby which was cut to size to fit the table. The plates are the Sedona pattern from Pfaltzgraff . The glassware is Fiestaware with the shamrock color rings. 

This set of castanets were my mother in laws. I have no idea where she found these, but I felt they added a nice "snappy" touch to the table setting. 

I love these handpainted avocado and chile pepper condiment holders. What are they for, you ask? For guacamole and salsa, of course!

I used the smaller "salad plates" for the young granddaughters' place settings.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Baked Garlic Lemon Sockeye Salmon served over sauteed baby spinach with shallots and capers

On this week's shopping trip, I splurged. No farm raised salmon this week. Wild caught Alaskan Sockeye Salmon was on sale and I took advantage of that good fortune. With the delicious flavor, the ease of preparation, and the health benefits of omega-3 fats which boost heart health, brain performance, joint health and the immune system how can you not love salmon?

Here's our starting point. The shallots and capers will be ingredients to the sauteed baby spinach.

The olive oils I used are Garlic and the new Limonato.  

Please click on the links to learn more about these healthy and delicious olive oils.

 Let's get started!

1 T. Green Limonato fused olive oil
1 T. Garlic infused olive oil
1 t. minced garlic
1 t. dried Italian seasoning
1/4 t. crushed red pepper flakes (optional) (you can use more if you're so inclined)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 - 1 3/4 lb. Wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon
1 lemon, thinly sliced

Over low heat, in a small saucepan, combine the olive oils, garlic, Italian seasoning, and red pepper flakes if using. Let garlic warm through and flavors blend, about 3 - 4 minutes. Remove from heat.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil with a large enough piece to fold up around the edges. Place salmon on the foil-lined pan and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Next, slowly and carefully spoon the olive oil mixture over the salmon.

 and place the sliced lemons on top.

Cover with another piece of foil and loosely crimp the edges of the foil together. Bake for 18 - 22 minutes depending on the thickness of the salmon. When salmon flakes easily with a fork, it is done.

Remove top piece of foil and return to the oven under the broiler for a few minutes while the salmon lightly browns. Watch carefully! You don't want to burn the fish. Doesn't that look delicious?

While the salmon is baking, let's prepare the spinach.

1 t. garlic olive oil
1 t. limonato olive oil
1 shallot, diced
1 t. minced garlic
1 bag baby spinach
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 T. drained capers
Juice of 1/2 lemon

In a medium skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic, and cook stirring occasionally, for 4 - 5 minutes. Add spinach a few handfuls at a time. It will begin to wilt immediately.

Continuing adding spinach until wilted and then add capers. Right before serving, add lemon juice and give a final stir.

Plate with a serving of spinach and top with a serving of the salmon. Top with a little lemon zest.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Cilantro & Roasted Onion Grilled Burgers (with Mesquite BBQ Sauce)

If you're a cilantro lover, I urge you to give the Cilantro and Roasted Onion Infused Olive Oil a try. Add a little to the ground chuck before forming the patties, grill or pan fry, and you will have a brand new burger to add to your recipe collection 

1 3/4 - 2 lbs. ground chuck
1 T. Cilantro and Roasted Onion Infused Olive Oil
1/2  t.granulated garlic
1/2 t. onion powder
1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. freshly ground black pepper

In a large bowl, mix all ingredients together until seasonings are blended throughout the meat. Shape into 6 - 8 patties.

Prepare your grill whether gas or charcoal. Place burgers on the grill and cook until your desired level of doneness. Well done burgers need to reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.

When burgers are done, lightly brush with mesquite BBQ sauce if desired. 

While you're grilling, how about trying these grilled onions?

Doesn't that look good enough to eat??