Pecan-Crusted Salmon with Roasted Carrots & Jasmine Rice
At Trader Joe's we picked up their frozen sweet and sour chicken tempura. I love sweet and sour chicken, but our local Chinese joint serves just the chicken and sauce. No fruits or veggies. Booooo. So, I grabbed the frozen chicken and sauce and decided to make the rest myself. Quick, easy, and with results as tasty as Chinese carry-out, this will be my new go-to recipe for sweet and sour chicken when just the chicken and sauce just won't do.
For a side, we had a leftover tropical fruit salad from the night before. It shares many ingredients with the sweet and sour dish, but it paired nicely without being overly repetitive:
Toss together the following ingredients and let sit a few hours to let the flavors meld:
Now that we’re moving into the winter months, I’m cooking with red meats I haven’t cooked before. Last week it was rack of lamb. More recently I made filet mignon steaks wrapped in bacon. Using ingredients from Trader Joe’s, I put together a meat and potatoes meal that was hearty and tasty.
Bacon-Wrapped Filet Mignon Steaks: Wrap beef tenderloin in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Take out of the fridge and slice through the tenderloin – wrap still on – into 1.5-inch thick steaks. Season with salt and pepper and wrap each with a slice of bacon. Heat olive oil in a pan and cook steaks, making sure to sear all sides and the bacon.
Pan-Sauteed Asparagus: Take Trader Joe’s frozen asparagus spears and cook in butter, salt, and pepper – tossing frequently – until soft and browned.
Mushroom Mashed Potatoes: Boil russet potato chunks in salted water until tender. Meanwhile, sauté sliced baby portabella mushrooms in butter, garlic, salt, and pepper until soft and brown. Mash potatoes with cream, mushrooms, and a handful of grated or chunked cheese.
Salad: Dark,leafy green with sliced tomatoes, apple-balsamic pickled shallots, and herbed goat cheese.
Every week or so, I change up my table settings and centerpieces. I collect vintage linens and like mixing and matching them to create different looks. The smartest décor purchases I’ve made are those that I can change with the seasons. I have large glass hurricanes that allow me to swap out the fillers (corks, dried flowers, garlands, ornaments and bulbs, pebbles, potpourri, etc.) and candles with the seasons.
This is a tasty, simple recipe using a mix of fresh and packaged foods to create a meal full of flavor and fiber.
- Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs
- Greek Feta Seasoning Blend from Spice Merchants
- Dark, Leafy Greens (arugula, spinach, etc.)
- Cherry Tomatoes
- Hummus (Trader Joe’s is the best!)
- Fresh Mozzerella Slices
- Crumbled Herbed Goat Cheese
- Chickpea Salad (Trader Joe’s makes one with chickpeas, mint, red onions, tomatoes, olive oil, vinegar, and salt)
- Whole Wheat Pitas cut into halves for stuffing
Step 1: Marinate chicken thighs in lemon zest, lemon juice, the used lemon wedges, smashed garlic cloves, olive oil, red wine vinegar, and the hefty sprinkling of the Greek seasoning
Step 2: Sautee thighs in olive oil with the marinade (minus lemons). Add butter and baste the chicken with the melted butter sauce as it cooks
Step 3: Remove the chicken from the pan and slice into thin strips
Step 4: Plate the pita pocket stuffers: chicken, greens, tomatoes, hummus, mozzarella, goat cheese, chickpea salad
Step 5: Stuff your pita pockets with an assortment of the stuffings. If you want more moisture in your sandwich, make a dressing of oil and vinegar (lemon juice, white wine vinegar, red wine vinegar, etc.)
Step 6: Stuff your face and enjoy!