Sicilian Sea Bass with Sweet & Sour Caponata

It was so good I ate mine and then said “Oh my, I forgot to take a photo of the completed meal!” Last weekend I bought eggplant at the local Farmer’s Market and didn’t want it to go to waste. I didn’t have any diced tomatoes, so used half a 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes. I love Bianco Tomatoes as they are canned within four hours of being harvested, so super fresh tasting.

The recipe was from Food Network Magazine, and was super easy.

Ingredients

3 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 eggplant (about 1 pound), cut into 3/4-inch cubes

4 ribs celery, thinly sliced

1 small red onion, diced

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

1 14.5-ounce can no-salt-added diced tomatoes ( see note above)

3 tablespoons capers, drained and rinsed

1/4 cup plus 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar

4 teaspoons honey (I didn’t have any, so used a little sugar)

4 skinless hake or cod fillets (about 6 ounces each)

1 cup packed fresh parsley, large leaves torn

1/2 baguette, sliced and toasted

Directions

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the eggplant and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned and almost tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove the eggplant to a large plate or bowl. Add 1 more tablespoon olive oil to the skillet. Add the celery and red onion and season with salt and pepper; cook until crisp-tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the tomatoes, capers, 1/4 cup vinegar, the honey and 3/4 cup water ( left out the water to have a thicker sauce). Stir in the eggplant, season with salt and pepper and cook until the vegetables are tender and the mixture thickens, 10 to 12 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Pat the fish dry, season with salt and pepper and add to the skillet. Cook, undisturbed, until golden brown on the bottom, 4 to 5 minutes. Flip the fish and cook until it is just opaque and flakes easily, 2 to 3 more minutes.
  3. Toss the parsley and remaining 2 teaspoons olive oil and 1 teaspoon vinegar in a small bowl; season with salt and pepper. Divide the caponata among shallow bowls and top each serving with a fish fillet. Top with the parsley and serve with the baguette slices. I left off the parsley and did not serve myself the baguette.
Sicilian Sea Bass with Sweet & Sour Caponata

Chicken breasts with Brown Butter-Garlic Tomato Sauce.

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Simple Summer dinner with beautiful tomatoes from Central Market is perfect for a warm evening.  Cooking is a joy to me, but the down side is there is too much good food to it, so I decided to veer away from America’s Test Kitchen and Paul Hollywood’s cooking as some light dishes might be good for the waistline.  (or lack thereof)  This one was very quick and easy and I loved the richness of the sauce.  My granddaughter has not yet developed a taste for tomatoes, but when the tomatoes were removed, she ate the entire piece.  Served with Parmesan Risotto ALA Diana, a summer salad with lettuce from our garden and tiny baby carrots and beets, as my granddaughter loves both.

Recipe:
YIELDServes 4 (serving size: 1 chicken breast and about 1/3 cup tomato mixture)

Browned butter is the quick cook’s best-kept secret: Less than two minutes in the pan caramelizes the milk solids in butter for a fragrant, nutty note in any dish. Try not to chop the tomatoes too finely; you want them somewhat chunky so they’ll break down in the sauce faster, but you also want them to retain some shape. If your chicken breasts are larger than 6 ounces (some can be as big as 12 ounces), halve the two breasts horizontally instead of pounding them thin. Serve over a bed of whole-wheat couscous, whole-grain polenta, or brown rice.

Ingredients

  • 4 (6-oz.) skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon black pepper, divided
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 6 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 2 cups halved grape tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

NUTRITION INFORMATION

  • calories 341
  • fat 17.3 g
  • satfat 5.6 g
  • monofat 8.1 g
  • polyfat 1.6 g
  • protein 39 g
  • carbohydrate 5 g
  • fiber 1 g
  • cholesterol 139 mg
  • iron 1 mg
  • sodium 443 mg
  • calcium 36 mg
  • sugars 4 g
  • Est. Added Sugars 0 g

How to Make It

  1. Place chicken breasts on a cutting board; pound to a 1/2-inch-thickness using a meat mallet or small, heavy skillet (all four breasts should fit in one large skillet). Sprinkle chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.

  2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add chicken to pan; cook 4 to 5 minutes on each side or until done. Remove from pan; keep warm. Do not wipe pan clean.

  3. Reduce heat to medium. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper, butter, and garlic to drippings in pan; cook 2 minutes or until butter just begins to brown, stirring frequently. Stir in tomatoes; cook 2 minutes or until tomatoes are wilted. Spoon tomato mixture over chicken; sprinkle with parsley.

     

Hope you enjoy this yummy summer dinner.  We sure did!

 

Chicken breasts with Brown Butter-Garlic Tomato Sauce.

Summer Greek Salad

Greek salad

Wondering around in my favorite grocery store and thinking, “What’s for dinner”, Greek salad came to mind.  So on my iPhone, I looked up ingredients and as I was walking by beautiful ripe avocados, thought they are good on just about anything.  So here you have America’s Test Kitchen Greek Salad with avocado added.  Luckily I had grilled some peppers a week ago, put them in oil and saved what I did not use, so that saved a step.  I used two kinds of olives, instead of just kalamata olives.  We opened a nice bottle of Pinot Noir from Oregon.  Oh my gosh, the bottle is empty.  I think we liked it!

I served this with some simple barbecued Chicken chunks with a rub from Central Market!  Simple and quiet Friday night with a good book.

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Greek Salad

WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS

“Most versions of Greek salad consist of iceberg lettuce, chunks of green pepper, and a few pale wedges of tomato, sparsely dotted with cubes of feta and garnished with one forlorn olive of questionable heritage. For our Greek salad, we aimed a little higher: We wanted a salad with crisp ingredients and bold flavors, highlighted by briny olives and tangy feta, all blended together with a bright-tasting dressing infused with fresh herbs. For a dressing with balanced flavor, we used a combination of lemon juice and red wine vinegar and added fresh oregano, olive oil, and a small amount of garlic. We poured the dressing over fresh vegetables, including Romaine lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and cucumbers, as well as other ingredients, including fresh mint and parsley, roasted peppers, and a generous sprinkling of feta cheese and olives.”

By America’s Test Kitchen

INGREDIENTS

VINAIGRETTE

3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 ½ teaspoons lemon juice from 1 lemon
2 teaspoons minced fresh oregano leaves
½ teaspoon table salt
teaspoon ground black pepper
1 medium clove garlic, pressed through garlic press or minced (about 1 teaspoon)
6 tablespoons olive oil

SALAD

½ medium red onion, sliced thin (about 3/4 cup)
1 medium cucumber, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeded, and cut into 1/8-inch-thick slices (about 2 cups)
2 hearts romaine lettuce, washed, dried thoroughly, and torn into 1 1/2-inch-pieces (about 8 cups)
2 large vine-ripened tomatoes (10 ounces total), each tomato cored, seeded, and cut into 12 wedges
¼ cup loosely packed torn fresh parsley leaves
¼ cup loosely packed torn fresh mint leaves
6 ounces jarred roasted red bell pepper, cut into 1/2 by 2-inch strips (about 1 cup)
20 large kalamata olives, each olive pitted and quartered lengthwise
5 ounces feta cheese, crumbled (1 cup)

NSTRUCTIONS

SERVES 6 TO 8 ( We will be eating this for few days)

Marinating the onion and cucumber in the vinaigrette tones down the onion’s harshness and flavors the cucumber. For efficiency, prepare the other salad ingredients while the onion and cucumber marinate. Use a salad spinner to dry the lettuce thoroughly after washing; any water left clinging to the leaves will dilute the dressing.

 

1. Whisk vinaigrette ingredients in large bowl until combined. Add onion and cucumber and toss; let stand to blend flavors, about 20 minutes.

2. Add romaine, tomatoes, parsley, mint, and peppers to bowl with onions and cucumbers; toss to coat with dressing.

3. Transfer salad to wide, shallow serving bowl or platter; sprinkle olives and feta over salad. Serve immediately.

Per Serving:

Cal 180; Fat 14 g; Sat fat 3.5 g; Chol 10 mg; Carb 8 g; Protein 5 g; Fiber 2 g; Sodium 600 mg

Summer Greek Salad