Grilled Shrimp Saganaki Stuffed Tomato

Summer is still playing hide and seek here in Montreal. Last weekend was hot and scorching, this weekend sunny but much cooler. As long as it is sunny I am happy. In Canada we had a long weekend too so I thought it was a perfect opportunity to get some of my foodie friends together for a simple BBQ dinner. An excuse to have the seasonal BBQ baptismal.

I do feel bad a bit for my friends because they did not get to taste my earlier meal, my amazing grilled lunch. There just was not enough to go around. How a propos to submit this recipe for the Creative Cooking Crew’s June theme – “what are you bringing to the BBQ?”. Turns out I did not bring my Grilled Shrimp Saganaki Stuffed Tomato to the BBQ but kept it all for myself.

Grilled Shrimp Saganaki Stuffed Tomato

Tasty reading ahead, KEEP GOING… →

Whey Lemonade

A few weeks ago I did not even know what the word whey meant. Do you know what it is? Milk consists of protein, fat and water. When you make cheese, the process of adding an acid makes the protein and fat curdle and forms a solid. The water that gets left behind in the whey. If you are a regular reader you know I have been a cheese making machine lately, check out my goat cheese and feta. So I have been left with a lot of whey. It seemed a shame to throw it out so I did a little research in hopes of finding a recipe.

It turns out whey is extremely healthy as it contains lactose, vitamins, protein, amino acids and minerals. Whey protein is believed to have anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer properties and appears to stimulate insulin release, in type 2 diabetics. Bodybuilders are fans of whey protein, sold in powder form, as a nutritional supplement.

You can use whey instead of milk in baking recipes and it is also popular in smoothies. There are actually quite a few uses for whey. But I wanted to make a recipe that made the whey shine. What I found was a delicious lemonade.

 

Yields 1

Whey Lemonade

Here is a healthy beverage recipe for lemonade made out of whey leftover from cheesemaking

5 minPrep Time

5 minTotal Time

Save RecipeSave Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 liter of whey
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • 1/3 cup of honey

Instructions

  1. Liquify honey in a bit of hot water from the tap
  2. Add the honey and the lemon juice to whey in a jug.
  3. Mix well, chill and serve.
Recipe Type: Beverages & Libations
7.6.3
207
http://cultureatz.com/whey-lemonade/

I am proud to say this post will be part of this week’s Wednesday Fresh Foods Link Up #18 over at Gastronomical Sovereignty, a link-up to encourage fresh food production, consumption, activism, and awareness.

Cheesepalooza: Feta Cheese

Already another cheese. I am on a roll! When I joined Cheesepalooza I was cutting it close to the new monthly deadline plus I wanted to make the challenge on the prior month…so you are getting 2 cheeses in one week. Have you ever wanted to make cheese but are not sure where to begin? This group is for you.

My first cheese was a basic goat cheese. That was a relatively simple process. Now for Feta, in theory it is still simple but you have to follow the recipe to the letter. Feta involves heating, curdling, draining, drying and ripening in brine. This challenge pushed me a little bit farther and gave me confidence for the next cheese. Check out the goat cheese round-up here.

Tasty reading ahead, KEEP GOING… →

Israeli Couscous With Spinach, Feta and Walnuts

Every once in a while you discover an ingredient you just cannot get enough of. My current fetish ingredient is Israeli couscous. I L-O-V-E the stuff. I first discovered it in a farmer’s market in Toronto. On a following trip I went back to buy some more…I have yet to find some in Montreal. I just may have to order some online.

I wanted to make a casserole like dish with Israeli couscous for a dinner with a friend. Now this friend is not vegetarian but she is 100% all about sustainability and organic food…particularly meat. I applaud her effort but I won’t pay 12$ for 2 chicken breasts. Perhaps I just don,t know where to go shop for organic meat. Anyways, when she comes over I always do a vegetarian dish. This one if loaded with CHEESE!

She is also a foodie so my goal was to blow her mind, or should I say her taste buds. This recipe was absolutely astounding and amazing. It is full of intense flavors, especially garlic. We both had seconds.

 

Ξ Israeli Couscous With Spinach, Feta and Walnuts Ξ
adapted from KLHquilts on Food.com

1 1/2 cup Israeli couscous
2 cups boiling water
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 large onion, diced
1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup minced fresh basil
1 cup feta, cubed
1/3 cup walnuts
5 cups loosely packed fresh spinach
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup grated Harvarti (or Gouda, Monterey Jack, Provologne)

Add couscous and salt to boiling water. Cover and let sit 10-15 minutes, then fluff with fork.

Heat oil in large skillet. Saute garlic and onion until tender and translucent.

Drain canned tomatoes, reserving 2/3 cup juice. Add drained tomatoes to garlic and onions. Cook until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 10 minutes, stirring frequently.

Stir tomato mixture into couscous. Mix in half the reserved tomato juice, basil, feta, walnuts, 4 cups of the spinach, salt and pepper.

Spread half of the couscous mixture in a square baking dish. Sprinkle half the Havarti evenly, then top with remaining couscous mixture.

Spread evenly on top the cup of spinach left, pour remaining tomato juice over and sprinkle remaining Havarti.

Bake for 25 minutes in a preheated oven at 375 F.

Shrimp Saganaki as a classic Greek Meze

Oh so looking forward to what everyone will make for this 5 Star Makeover. Our theme this month is Greek Meze, or appetizers. We all checked in to make sure no recipe will be made twice so watch out for the round up for amazing Greek fare inspiration. I chose a wonderful meze which can easily be transformed into a main meal as well. My meze is called Garides Saganaki, or Shrimp Saganaki.

Tasty reading ahead, KEEP GOING… →

Spinach and Feta Strata

Here is a great little dish to serve for a sophisticated brunch at home. This is actually the 3rd dish I said I would blog about from Mother’s Day. Sorry I have been busy. Last year I made a baked french toast dish which my mom loved. I thought I would stick to the idea but turn it into a savory dish.

Spinach came to mind and there are plenty of recipes out there for a Spinach Strata. My deciding factor was this recipe at The Flour Sack which used Feta cheese as well. A Strata is very similar to a quiche but instead of  crust you soak the egg mixture up with bread, mix in cheese and bake it after leaving it overnight in the fridge to make sure the bread has completely absorbed the egg mixture. It is a very versatile dish as you can tried different kinds of cheeses or add sausage, mushrooms, whatever you like. This time around when I saw the spinach and feta version the first thing that came to mind was ‘Bingo!”

If you want to see the other two recipes I made for the brunch you can check them out here: a Maple Apple Brussels Sprout Salad as a side dish and for dessert Lemon Rice Pudding Verrine with Chocolate Ganache.

Ξ Spinach and Feta Strata Ξ

grated zest of 1 lemon
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil (coating the pan)
2 tsp Dijon mustard
3/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp black pepper (freshly ground)
6 large eggs
2 cups whole milk
10 oz crusty day old bread
2 cups spinach leaves (coarsely chopped baby, 3 12 ounces)
1 cup feta, crumbled

1 Coat an 9-inch square baking dish with olive oil. Sprinkle lemon zest. Add the bread, spinach, and half of the feta. Gently toss the mixture with your hands until combined, then spread it into an even layer; set aside.

2 Whisk the measured olive oil, mustard, salt, and pepper in a large bowl until combined. Add the eggs and milk and whisk until combined. Very slowly drizzle the mixture over the bread and evenly sprinkle the remaining half of the feta over top. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

3 Heat the oven to 350°F. Bake until the custard is set and the edges are browned, about 55 to 65 minutes. Drizzle olive oil and add chopped fresh oregano.