Grilled Chicken and Pepper Kebobs with Dill Garlic Yogurt Sauce

With summer winding down (hello, fall!), and school getting a little busier, I’ve been craving quick and easy meals to get me through the week.  In an attempt to use up some herbs from the garden, I made up this quick marinade and never looked back – it turned out SO good.  I’m all about that grilled-charred-peppery goodness from the grill!

This week is the beginning of the crazy ride that is residency applications! Eek!  I’m sending out applications on Friday and from then on, it’s a waiting game to hear back from programs and snag potential interviews.  It should be an interesting fall and winter, with more travel (hi – be right back – filling out my TSA precheck application!).

I’m excited to get our fall decorations out this week and make the yearly trip to the pumpkin patch!  I usually go all out, getting hay bales, corn stalks, pumpkins and gourds. I also have a favorite homemade fall wreath that brightens up the front door!  We will be planting mums (my fav!) next weekend and I’m debating a trip to Home Goods to snag up some of their cute fall decor.

Make sure you add this delicious mediterranean inspired recipe to your weekly rotation – you won’t regret it!

Grilled Greek Chicken and Bell Pepper Kabobs with Dill Garlic Yogurt Sauce
Author: 
Recipe type: Grilling
Cuisine: Mediterranean
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 servings
 
Ingredients
For the kebobs:
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts or tenderloins, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 of each - red bell pepper, orange bell pepper, white onion - cut into one inch cubes
For the marinade:
  • ½ lemon, juiced
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 large or 4 small garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ tsp. red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup combined fresh dill, rosemary, and thyme, minced (fresh makes all the difference!)
  • 1.5 tbsp. olive oil
For the sauce:
  • 1 cup 2% plain greek yogurt - I prefer Fage brand!
  • 1 tbsp. fresh dill, minced
  • ½ tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • ½ tsp. kosher salt
  • ½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
Instructions
For the kebobs:
  1. Set your grill to medium heat.
  2. Mix up the marinade - lemon juice, salt, pepper, garlic, red pepper flakes, and freshly chopped herbs. Split evenly between the pepper/onion combo and chicken and let sit for 20 minutes in the fridge.
  3. Skewer the chicken and veggies on metal kebob sticks.
  4. Grill the kebobs for 12-14 minutes, flipping so each side is grilled. If your chicken pieces are bigger, you may need to cook a little longer.
For the sauce:
  1. Combine greek yogurt, fresh dill, olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. (I prefer garlic powder in the sauce over fresh garlic because it doesn't have as much of a bite!)

 

Blackened Salmon with Strawberry Avocado Salsa

This recipe is hands DOWN my favorite food to come out of my kitchen!  Writing about this recipe is hands DOWN my favorite way to procrastinate the residency application work that is looming over my head. Now that exams are over, this is the last *big* project left in medical school…and hopefully some interviews to follow during this coming winter!

While I am SO ready for fall to come (hey there, football season!), it will be hard to say goodbye to the fresh, crisp, summery foods. My new tweedle-dee and tweedle-dum combo is absolutely avocado and strawberries!  This fab duo pairs magnificently with spicy, seared salmon to create an unforgettable dish.  Plus, it doesn’t take long to make! So you can impress your tastetesters in no time at all.  Have any leftovers? Check out this SWAG Salad – strawberry, walnut, avocado, and goat cheese!

Um, hi there lovely summer colors!

So, in these last few weeks of summer I’ve created a mini-bucket list!

  1. Go to the Toledo ZOO! And finally check out the safari side!
  2. Take the dogs to all the metro parks when it cools down – their fur can’t handle the heat!
  3. Check out one of the new rooftop bars in downtown Toledo!
  4. Make this dish as long as the strawberries look delish 😀

Let me know how your dish turns out! And, as always, tag @anappleadayonline so I can check it out!

Blackened Salmon with Strawberry Avocado Salsa
Author: 
Recipe type: Seafood
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2 servings
 
This has been my go-to meal for years - this combination creates a sweet heat that is unbeatable! This recipe is enough for two servings, so multiply for a large crowd!
Ingredients
For the salsa:
  • 1 avocado, cubed
  • ¼ cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • ¼ cup strawberries, diced
  • 1 tbsp. diced red onion
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tbsp. cilantro, minced
  • ½ lime, juiced
For the Salmon:
  • 2 medium-sized salmon filets
  • ¼ tsp. fresh ground pepper
  • ½ tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • ½ tsp. oregano
  • ½ tsp. paprika
  • ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp. canola oil
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice (I love the frozen brown rice packs by the frozen veggies - makes weeknight dinners a breeze!)
Instructions
  1. Combine the salsa ingredients and mix well, set aside.
  2. Cook the brown rice according to the instructions.
  3. Mix the rub ingredients together - salt, pepper, chili powder, oregano, paprika, and cayenne pepper. Pat salmon filets dry and press the rub onto one side.
  4. Heat canola oil in large skillet over medium-high heat.
  5. Place salmon rub-side down and cook for 60-90 seconds (just enough to create a crust). Flip the salmon and reduce the heat to medium.
  6. Cook the remaining side for 7 minutes (might need more depending on how thick they are).
  7. Serve the salmon over a bed of brown rice. Top with the strawberry avocado salsa and enjoy!

 

Chimichurri Shrimp

Hi friends – reporting from my couch on a Saturday night.  I successfully have made no plans this weekend and have watched The Bachelorette, 2 Denzel Washington movies (The Hurricane and Man on Fire…both amazing), and we’re about to start the new season of Bloodline, so things are looking good over here. On top of that, I have brainstormed SO many food projects featuring my herb garden, with special appearances from my friends Cilantro, Chive, Mint, Thai Basil, Dill, and Parsley.  Real Basil is struggling in the growing department, so cross your fingers it kicks in by the time caprese salads are on a daily rotation in this household.

Amazing, herby, delicious shrimpies.

The last few weeks I’ve been leaning on the quick, 20-minutes-to-throw together meals to get me through the week.  Ingredients I always have on hand? Fresh herbs, lemon or lime, little bit of heat, olive oil, and seafood.  Any combination of those will yield you amazing results. Every. Single. Time. BUT, I’m about to introduce you to a sauce that you can use again and again, on chicken, shrimp, steak, sandwiches…? Haven’t tried that last one, but WHY NOT.

Tomatoes added. For effect and color contrasting.

Traditional chimichurri can be found in the best of Argentinian cuisine, but this is my “take” on it.  Usually, it features parsley, garlic, vinegar, and oil.  Instead, we’re adding everything we can find within arms reach to take it up a notch.  You know those giant bunches of herbs you have lying around when you need one tablespoon but buy 7 cups at the grocery store?  THIS is what you should make with them.  Honestly, throw anything you’ve got in there.  Don’t like cilantro because you think it tastes like soap? First, read this article because it’s interesting.  Then, I give you permission to add any other herbs you want!  My favorite extras are mint, chives, and dill.  It’s that easy!

Salad on the side. Because #veggies.

So friends, take a stab at this delicious, easy, quick, but PACKED WITH FLAVOR recipe.  I would have grilled them, but alas, we were out of propane.  So I envy anyone that gets to throw these bad boys on the grill with a little char.  Let me know what you think!

Chimichurri Shrimp
Author: 
Recipe type: Seafood
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 servings
 
This chimichurri sauce can be added to anything (try chicken and steak!), but with these grilled or sauteed shrimp, it makes a quick meal with amazing flavor.
Ingredients
For the chimichurri sauce:
  • 2 cups of herbs, minced (I recommend heavier in the parsley/cilantro area, but add in mint, dill, basil, and chives!)
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
  • Note: feel free to add one serrano or jalapeno pepper (take out the seeds and membrane!) for some extra heat, but keep in mind the shrimp have some red pepper flakes!
For the Shrimp:
  • 1 pound of shrimp, deveined, tails on
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
Instructions
For the shrimp:
  1. Marinade the shrimp in the olive oil, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes for 20-30 minutes. Meanwhile...make your sauce!
For the sauce:
  1. Combine the minced herbs, lime juice, salt, pepper, olive oil, and garlic in a large bowl.
Back to shrimp:
  1. Saute or grill (on skewers!) the shrimp for 2 minutes per side on medium/high heat. Add the shrimp to the large bowl with the chimichurri sauce and toss until they're all coated. Cover for 5 minutes to let the heat combine all the flavors.
  2. Enjoy!

 

Homemade Taco Seasoning

Hey there everyone!  I think spring has officially sprung!  We had some serious rainfall last week (48 straight hours!), but the sun has been shining this weekend, the temperature is rising, and flowers are blooming everywhere.  In the spirit of summer, we had a belated Cinco de Mayo celebration today.  Instead of rushing to the store for some supplies, I opted for homemade taco seasoning from the spices in my cabinet.

In a perfect world, all of those pre-made seasoning packs would be salt-free, but unfortunately that is not the case!  With this homemade seasoning, you’re cutting out massive amounts of sodium that you’d find in your favorite packs from the grocery store.  On top of that, you can adjust the heat as needed (just reduce the red pepper flakes and cayenne pepper!).

I’m excited for the week and even more excited for the meals to come…we’ve got curry chicken and Chinese lettuce wraps on the calendar!  Hopefully I can share them with you all soon.  I’m off to go eat some of these crunchy, delicious tacos with a side of Fool-Proof Guacamole and enjoy the sunshine!  Have a great Sunday 😀

Homemade Taco Seasoning
Author: 
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8 tacos
 
Skip the grocery store and make this homemade taco seasoning - packs a flavor punch! Homemade tacos are at your fingertips.
Ingredients
For the seasoning:
  • 5 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1.25 tsp. oregano
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 2.5 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 2.5 tsp. garlic powder
  • 2.5 tsp. cumin
  • 3.75 tsp. onion powder
  • 8.5 tsp. chili powder
  • 1.25 tsp. cayenne pepper
The rest...
  • 1 pound of ground turkey, beef, or chicken
  • 8 oz. can of tomato sauce
Instructions
  1. Combine all of your spices in a tupperware or mason jar for storage.
  2. Sauté 1 pound of ground turkey, beef, or chicken (your choice) in a saute pan until browned.
  3. Add 1 to 1.5 tbsp. of the seasoning mix with 1 cup of water and 8 oz. can of tomato sauce.
  4. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes or so. You want most of the liquid to be absorbed.
  5. Enjoy on tacos! Try different toppings like avocado, red onion, cilantro, lettuce, tomatoes, and shredded cheese.

 

Chicken Pesto Stuffed Peppers

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Two fun facts about me: 1) I love stuffed peppers.  They’re very underrated.  You can put things you’d normally eat alone into a stuffed pepper and it’s a whole new meal!  With an added veggie! 2) I LOVE HOLIDAYS.  Like any holiday.  Halloween…Memorial Day…Valentine’s…ST. PATRICK’S DAY!  All week I’ve been planning “green meals”, which inspired these delicious, GREEN PESTO PEPPERS. 

Full Disclosure – I tried making a “skinny shepherd’s pie!” and it…didn’t exactly turn out.  Not to mention shepherd’s pie is not a pretty dish to photograph.

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Spicy Adobo Turkey Chili

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I am a MASSIVE Green Bay Packer fan.  Like beyond a fan.  A part “owner”, seeing as the Packers are the only NFL team that are publicly owned.  Football season has turned into quite the tradition in our family – we manage up to 5 fantasy football teams, I cheer for Michigan on Saturdays and Green Bay on Sundays, I spend the week discussing lineups with my dad, and I plan football watching menus all season long!  A huge staple on any game day buffet table is a good, tasty, tons-o-toppings chili.

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Normally, I’d wait to spread the joy until next season.  BUT, seeing as we just got a snowstorm last night, it seems mighty appropriate!  What do they say about March?  In like a lion and out like a lamb?  Yeah.  That’s definitely happening.

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Greek Shrimp Zoodles and Leftover Breakfast!

Dinner Style!

Nothing makes me happier than using up a bunch of ingredients in the fridge before they’re dunzo.  I feel like I’m helping the environment and that I am a successful produce buyer.  Which doesn’t happen often.  One BIG thing I’m working on is to choose the healthy snack – fruits, veggies, hummus, etc. – over the easy snack.  Like cheese sticks, and yogurt, and taco bell.  Oops.

This meal is a double whammy of veggies – twice!  For dinner and brunch!  SO MANY VEGGIES!  And shrimp which are phenom for you and feta which is a relatively healthy cheese.  It’s why the Mediterranean diet is so good for you!  Oh and yolky, eggy goodness for brunch.

Breakfast Style!

Breakfast Style!

I got back from a fabulous wedding in San Diego last weekend and was amazed by all the delicious food down there!  I had about 6 servings of fish tacos, oysters, lobster tacos (what!?), and cevicé – and every. single. time it was SO good.  All the food was so light and fresh, it made me crave warmer months when we can cook outside and eat all the fruits and veggies in the world.  That aren’t a potato.

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I came back needing some serious vacay rejuvination.  One of those vacations that you need a vacation after.  Not because of stress, but because TOO much fun was had!  We stayed up late dancing, singing karaoke, eating snacky foods, and I firmly believe that flying across the country seriously dehydrates you.  So I hopped to the gym twice (!) this week already, have drank a TON of water, and ate these delicious dishes to get myself back on track.

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I’ve been perusing the Inspiralized blog recipe index to come up with new ideas for veggies to try in the spiralizer!  I’m thinking something *crazy* like celeriac or kohlrabi.  I don’t know what either of those look like, so wish me luck.  Anyhooligans.  If I haven’t convinced you to get a spiralizer yet, hopefully this is the tipping point.  Your belly and brain will thank you for all the extra nutrients!

Greek Shrimp Zoodles and Leftover Breakfast!
Author: 
Recipe type: Main Dish and Breakfast
Cuisine: Greek
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 servings
 
Try these zoodles with fantastic flavors and delicious shrimp - and then use your leftover veggies and cheese for a nutritious breakfast or lunch the next day!
Ingredients
For the Dinner:
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 container cherry tomatoes
  • ½ tsp. garlic powder
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 30 shrimp, shelled deveined
  • 2 tbsp. corn starch
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. pepper
  • ½ tsp. red pepper flakes
  • ½ tsp. oregano
  • ⅓ cup white wine
  • 5 zucchini, spiralized
  • ½ lemon, juiced
  • 4 tbsp. feta cheese
For the Breakfast:
  • Any leftover cherry tomatoes and zucchini
  • 4 egg
  • 4 tbsp. feta cheese
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
For the Dinner:
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss cherry tomatoes in 1 tbsp. olive oil, garlic powder, and salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Bake tomatoes until they are blistered - about 20 minutes.
  3. Toss shrimp in cornstarch, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and oregano. They should be lightly covered.
  4. Heat a medium sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the butter and melt. Add minced garlic and sauté until fragrant.
  5. Add shrimp to sauté pan and cook about 3 minutes on each side.
  6. Add white wine and half the lemon juice to the pan and scrape up any bits browned to the pan. Let simmer until reduced by about half.
  7. Add zucchini noodles and sprinkle with remaining olive oil, salt, and pepper. Sauté until soft - "al dente". They'll have a little crunch to them. Add remaining lemon juice.
  8. Mix in half the feta cheese so it can melt.
  9. Add tomatoes and combine.
  10. After plating, sprinkle with remaining feta cheese
For the breakfast:
  1. Add olive oil to a large sauté pan. Cook any leftover zucchini and cherry tomatoes until warmed and tender.
  2. Crack and egg over the noodles like they're in a "basket".
  3. Cover the pan so they can cook through.
  4. Add feta cheese, salt, and pepper at the end.
  5. Enjoy meal #2!
Notes
Don't add anything to the zucchini noodles for leftovers or they might get mushy in the fridge.

If you don't have a spiralizer, this would be delicious with some whole wheat noodles as well! Add the tomatoes and feta into an egg white omelette the next morning for a double meal.

 

Homemade Crunchwrap Supremes

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I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that Taco Bell Crunchwrap Supreme is my ultimate weakness.  Whether going through the drive-thru at 2AM with our Uber driver (he always gets free tacos) or stopping by when you just can’t cook that night – it’s the ultimate go-to fast food!  And sewwwww not good for you.

Recently, the best thing I’ve discovered is that I can make these at home and they’re 10x better and 10x healthier and 10x more customizable.  AND they’re not that hard!  Once you buy the ingredients, you’ll have them stored for last-minute usage and those weeknights where you need to find the closest bottle of Cabernet and some melty cheese A*S*A*P* are SAVED.

Speaking of Cabernet and melty cheese….SCANDAL COMES BACK NEXT WEEK!  And the Superbowl is on Sunday!! Two “holidays” in one week!  EEK!  And V-Day is next Sunday!! So exciting.  I’ll be posting my Superbowl app that has edamame and dates and olives and…ugh.  Just wait, it’s gonna be completely amazing.

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Cajun Seared Salmon with Asian Spiralized Salad

How FRESH and HEALTHY!

How FRESH and HEALTHY!

Lately I’ve been strugglin’ with getting into a serious routine.  Which is a *Grade A Problem* because soon I’ll be back in medical school, doing rotations, and my life schedule is largely determined by -NOT- me.  AKA…I show up no matter what day and what time if the doctors need me to help out.  Don’t get me wrong!  I’m super excited – I miss medicine.  Which is good or else I totally picked the wrong profession.

BUT I feel like I need to train myself back into being super efficient.  Which means waking up early to go to the gym before the day starts, Sunday food prep days, assembly line laundry sessions, you catch my drift?  Any tricks of the trade would be greatly appreciated!  Since I can’t live off of Easy Mac, I’ve got to gather an arsenal of quick, easy, healthy meals I can make after a 12 hour shift.  And what’s quicker and easier and healthier than salmon and a bomb-diggity-not-boring salad?  NOTHING!

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Healthy Zucchini Noodle Ramen

Delicious nutritious soup - a remake of an old classic!

Delicious nutritious soup – a remake of an old classic!

I’ve had this a draft of this recipe written since September – but for various reasons I haven’t posted it yet.  The only pictures I had were in a purple bowl and I’ve decided purple is an unappetizing color.  I thought people would find the egg + soup combination strange.  Using the college, orange-wrapped noodles seemed like cheating.  But, *ALAS*!  I have found just the tweak this recipe needed!

I finally bought a spiralizer and have completely fell in love.  I started with the classic spiralized veggie – ZUCCHINI!  The “zoodles” ended up great – they didn’t get mushy in the soup and added a *crunch* component to the soothing broth that turned out really well.  I couldn’t be happier!  And now I can’t stop spiralizing.  I couldn’t fall asleep last night because I was trying to come up with something to spiralize for breakfast — Update: I still haven’t thought of anything.

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