Sheet Pan Greek Pita

I’m constantly printing out recipes or ripping them out of magazines. Sometimes I take a second (or third) look at them and decide that I just don’t want to make it for various reasons. Usually it’s because it requires too many ingredients or more than I feel like buying. And while the ingredient list for this Sheet Pan Greek Pita is a bit long, it was thankfully ingredients that I normally have on hand or are part of a typical trip to the supermarket.

Another plus to this recipe… It came together in less than 45 minutes. Since the salad requires a little time to sit and marinate I decided to make it earlier in the day so it would be ready by the time my chicken was done.

And when it was time to eat, it was super easy to put together. I cut a pita in half, added in some of the salad, some of the chicken and topped it off with more of the salad.  This is one recipe that I won’t be tossing. This pita was delicious and I may have discovered a new way to make my chicken for salads!

Sheet Pan Greek Pita

For the Chicken:

4 boneless & skinless chicken thighs cut into 1-inch pieces

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder

1 1/2 teaspoons oregano

1 teaspoon salt

For the Cucumber Tomato Salad:

1/4 cup olive oil

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon oregano

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 cucumber, diced

1 pint cherry tomatoes, sliced in half

2 tablespoons chopped mint

1/4 cup diced red onion

1/2 cup black olives chopped (or Kalamata olives)

1 cup crumbled feta cheese

Juice of half a lemon

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

2 Pitas for serving

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

In a medium bowl combine all the ingredients for the salad and mix well. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or overnight.

Combine all the ingredients for the chicken in a medium bowl. Mix well and then spread on a large baking pan. Make sure to leave ample space between the chicken so it roasts as opposed to steam. Cook in the preheated oven for 18-20 minutes, until chicken is cooked through.

To serve, slice a pita in half, spoon some of the cucumber tomato salad into the pita, followed by the chicken and top it off with more of the salad.

Recipe from Chef Jason Goldstein

Roasted Butternut Squash Pasta in a Browned Butter Sage Sauce

As I mentioned in my focaccia post earlier this week I decided to plant quite a few herbs. Today I am sharing with you what I opted to make with the fresh sage I picked… A Roasted Butternut Squash Pasta in a Browned Butter Sage Sauce. This was the first time I had planted sage and while I have purchased it a few times in the supermarket, there is really nothing like growing your own herbs and vegetables. Although, the tomatoes, cucumber and eggplant I planted are in fact fruits thanks to the seeds inside of them and because they all come from the flower of the plant. Back to the sage though, the leaves were enormous and so fragrant.

I started by peeling and chopping up a small butternut squash. I usually take the easy route and buy butternut squash already chopped, but since it’s not Fall yet it wasn’t available at my local supermarket. I did learn though that peeling and chopping up a small butternut squash is much easier than a large one. Next, I tossed it with olive oil, salt and pepper and roasted it in the oven for about 35 minutes.

Next, I boiled some pasta. Now, I would stick with penne or farfalle for this dish. I just find that it mixes better with the sauce and the size of that pasta is a good ratio for the small chunks of butternut squash. And finally, I made the browned butter sage sauce. In a large skillet, I combined half a stick of butter along with my fresh sage leaves over medium-low heat. I let the butter cook until it was beginning to brown and then added in minced garlic and cooked it for a minute more. Now, you need the sage leaves to crisp up so you can crumble them into the dish. That won’t happen though until you add the garlic to the melted butter and everything begins to sizzle. Make sure you don’t overcook the butter or the garlic or your sauce will be bitter. After the minute, I removed the pan from the heat, removed the sage leaves and added in the cooked pasta and roasted butternut squash. I crumbled the sage and then added it back to the skillet. I gave everything a good toss to make sure it was evenly coated with the browned butter and then tossed in some parmesan cheese and dinner was ready!

Roasted Butternut Squash Pasta in a Browned Butter Sage Sauce

Ingredients:

1 small to medium butternut squash, 2 pounds

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons olive oil

8 ounces pasta*

1/4 cup unsalted butter

18-24 fresh sage leaves

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese

*Ideal pasta would be a penne or farfalle

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 375 F. Peel the butternut squash, scoop out the seeds and then cut into 1/2-inch to 1-inch cubes. Transfer the cubes to a large baking sheet and drizzle with the oil and sprinkle the salt and pepper on top. Toss the cubes to evenly coat them with the olive oil and salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 30-35 minutes, tossing them halfway through the cooking time. Set aside.

Cook the pasta per the directions on the box. Set aside.

In a large skillet over medium-low heat add the butter and sage leaves and cook until the butter begins to brown. Add the garlic and continue cooking for an additional minute. Make sure not to let the butter or garlic burn as the flavor will become bitter then. Remove from the heat and use a fork or slotted spoon to remove the sage leaves. They should be crispy.

Add the roasted butternut squash and cooked pasta to the skillet. Crumble the sage on top. Return the skillet to low-heat and toss everything a few times to evenly coat the pasta and squash with the browned butter. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Toss the parmesan cheese in and serve.

Recipe modified from The Spruce Eats

Orecchiette with Sausage and Spinach

Quick and easy dinners… Something we can all appreciate and are always in search of. This pasta dish is ready in about 30 minutes and you can switch up some of the ingredients to change the flavors. Instead of using regular canned diced tomatoes you can try one that is seasoned with different spices and instead of orecchiette pasta you can easily substitute small shells. And maybe instead of spinach try arugula. As you can see the possibilities are endless.

Orecchiette with Sausage and Spinach

Ingredients:

16 ounces sweet Italian sausage

1 bunch scallions, chopped (white and green parts separated)

1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary

1 14 oz. can diced tomatoes

16 ounces orecchiette

5 ounce bag of baby spinach, roughly chopped

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

3 tablespoons olive oil

Kosher salt

 

Directions:

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil.

Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the sausage meat and cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon, until browned. Add the scallion white and rosemary and cook until the scallions have wilted. Add the tomatoes with their juices and 1/2 cup of the boiling water. Let simmer while the pasta cooks.

Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook according to the directions on the box for al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water then drain the pasta.

Add the pasta to the tomato sauce along with the spinach and half of the scallion green. Toss to coat the pasta with the sauce and continue cooking until the spinach has wilted. Gradually add the reserved pasta water as needed to loosen the sauce. Season with salt and drizzle with the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and remove from the heat.

Sprinkle the cheese and remaining scallions over the pasta when serving.

Recipe slightly modified from Food Network

Teriyaki Barbecue Pineapple Chicken Sheet Pan Dinner

Sheet Pan Dinners… They are pretty ingenious. You combine all of your ingredients on a pan, cook it in the oven and dinner is ready. It switches the idea of one pot cooking to a pan and lends itself to an easy and quick clean-up. You can’t beat that. Recently during a lull at work I clicked on a link for 50 sheet pan dinner recipes and came across a few that caught my eye. One is for gnocchi that included a variation to use Trader Joe’s Cauliflower Gnocchi which I currently have a bag of in my freezer. It took me a few trips to Trader Joe’s to finally find it since it’s apparently so popular. On a side note, I normally shy away from making frozen meals or snacks, but I am coming to love some of the frozen food in Trader Joe’s. Some of my faves, their mozzarella sticks, chicken and cilantro wontons, and Mandarin Orange Chicken. Back to the recipe for today though… a Teriyaki Barbecue Pineapple Chicken Sheet Pan Dinner. That’s a mouthful of a recipe title for sure, but, one that turns out a delicious end product.

I began by chopping some of my ingredients into bite-sized pieces: chicken breasts, a green and yellow bell pepper, and a sweet onion. I combined them with broccoli florets – I purchased a bag of these in the produce section – and a can of drained pineapple chunks in a large zip-top bag. In a medium bowl I whisked together the ingredients for the marinade: soy sauce, barbecue sauce, minced garlic, pineapple juice (from the can of pineapple chunks), honey and pepper. I poured some of the marinade into the bag, reserving a cup, and then sealed it and shook and massaged the bag to make sure the marinade was evenly distributed throughout it. I then placed it in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. You could leave it in longer if you have the time.

After the 30 minutes I preheated my oven to 400 F and using a slotted spoon I transferred the chicken and vegetables to a large baking sheet. You want to transfer as little as the marinade from the bag to the pan as possible as the chicken and vegetables will create more liquid as they cook. I then placed it in the oven and cooked it for 20 minutes. The recipe stated 10 minutes but when I checked the chicken at that point it looked way to underdone for my taste so I left it in for another 10 minutes. While the chicken and vegetables were in the oven, I poured the reserved marinade in a small saucepan and simmered it over medium-low heat until it was thickened.

Once chicken was done I removed the pan from the oven and switched it to the broiler setting. Using paper towels I soaked up some of the excess liquid on the pan and then poured the thickened marinade over the chicken and vegetables and stirred it all together. I placed the pan back in the oven and broiled it for about 6 minutes. To go along with this I made rice and had the perfect dinner (and leftovers.)

And there you have it… My first sheet pan dinner that I am sure I will be making again.

 

Teriyaki Barbecue Pineapple Chicken Sheet Pan Dinner

Ingredients:

2 skinless boneless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces

1 green bell pepper, cut into bite-sized pieces

1 orange bell pepper, cut into bite-sized pieces

2 cups broccoli florets

1/2 sweet onion, cut into bite-sized pieces

20 oz. can pineapple chunks in pineapple juice, drained and the juice reserved

 

For the marinade:

1/2 cup soy sauce

1 cup barbecue sauce

1/2 cup reserved pineapple juice

2 tablespoons honey

1/2 teaspoon pepper

 

Directions:

Combine the chicken, peppers, broccoli, onion and pineapple in a large zip top bag.

In a medium bowl combine the ingredients for the marinade and whisk them together. Reserve 1 cup of the marinade and pour the rest into the zip top bag.

Seal the bag and shake and massage the marinade into the meat until it’s evenly distributed. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400 F.

Using a slotted spoon (or tongs) transfer the contents from the zip top bag to a sheet pan in a single layer. You don’t want to transfer too much of the marinade since the chicken and vegetables will let off their own liquid as it cooks. Discard the leftover marinade.

Cook in the oven for 15-20 minutes. Until the chicken is just about done.

Meanwhile, pour the reserved cup of marinade in a small saucepan and cook on medium heat until it begins to boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue simmering until the sauce is thickened and has reduced by half.

Remove the pan from the oven and switch the oven to the broiler setting.

Use paper towels to remove any liquid from the pan. Pour the thickened sauce over the chicken and vegetables and lightly toss to coat.

Return the pan to the oven and broil for 5-7 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and the chicken and vegetables are browned.

Serve with rice or noodles.

Recipe from Yellow Bliss Road