Italy at Home

We decided to go vegetarian a couple days a week for a handful of reasons. Day one was successful and this recipe helped tremendously! The recipe says it serves 4-6 people… it served 2 in our house 🙈. I highly suggest making his for your next gathering. This bruschetta is slathered with a rich layer of goat cheese, topped with mouth-watering roasted tomatoes, and drizzled with a sweet and tangy balsamic reduction. If you’ve never had bruschetta like this before, your life will instantly be changed after trying one bite.

Bruschetta with Goat Cheese

Serves: 4-6 Cooking Time: 30 minutes

INGREDIENTS

1 carton of grape or cherry tomatoes, sliced

1/2 teaspoon salt

1-2 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup balsamic vinegar

1 loaf of French bread, sliced

4 oz. goat cheese

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Basil, fresh or dried

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2. Slice tomatoes and spread out on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt.

3. Lay sliced French bread pieces on a baking sheet and spread with olive oil.

4. Bake tomatoes for 20 minutes or until well roasted. Halfway through baking the tomatoes, place sliced French bread in for 10 minutes.

5. In the meantime, place goat cheese and garlic powder in a small bowl. Mix with a hand-held mixer until well blended and creamy.

6. To make balsamic reduction, place vinegar in a small saucepan. Heat over medium-high until boiling. Once boiling, reduce heat to medium-low and allow to simmer for 10 minutes. Stir occasionally. Vinegar is done once it has thickened and coats the back of a spoon.

7. Spread a thick layer of cheese on bread. Top with tomatoes and drizzle with balsamic reduction. Sprinkle basil on top.

8. Serve immediately.

NOTES

Adapted from Joyful Healthy Eats.

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Thai Lettuce Wraps

After my husband got back from Thailand he could NOT stop raving about the food.  I never thought much about Thai food but he insisted that it was delicious and that I should A. Learn how to make his favorites and B. Find an authentic Thai restaurant to go to. We went to a Thai restaurant and I very much enjoyed it!

In high school I used to enjoy lettuce wraps so I figured I’d recreate them!

Ingredients for wraps:

  • Scallions
  • Cilantro
  • Mint
  • Cucumber
  • Lime
  • Carrots
  • 1 package Ground Chicken
  • Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder
  • Rice paper

Directions:

  • Chop scallions, chop mint, chop cilantro, chop cucumbers and carrots into small pieces.
  • Add a dash of salt, pepper and garlic powder to the ground chicken, sauté.
  • Towards the end of the sauté, zest the lime over the chicken.
  • Soak each sheet of rice paper in a shallow container of water for a minute or two, I used a 9×9 baking dish. It is ok if they are still wet after taking out of the water as the water is absorbed quickly as the roll is made and becomes easier to fold.
  • Fill the rice paper with the ingredients and wrap it like a burrito! My rice paper wrapping skills are NOT stellar… but it was delicious nonetheless. You can dip it into the peanut sauce or line the wrap with peanut sauce before you add the ingredients to it…or do both because its yummy.

Ingredients for peanut sauce:

  • 1/2 cup Peanut Butter
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 drops of hot pepper sauce
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced

Directions: Mix all together thoroughly until there is a creamy consistency.

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Smoky Adobo Chicken Tacos

Smoky Adobo Chicken Tacos with Mango Slaw & Lime Crema

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This meal is delicious — it is not something I would’ve ever thought to make for myself because I’m generally very picky but I have to say this pleasantly surprised me!

Time: 40 minutes

Recipe makes enough for 2

*Nut Free & Spicy*

Ingredients:

– 2 chicken breast

– flour tortillas

– 1 lime

– 2 Tablespoons of sour cream

– 1 bunch cilantro

– 1 mango

– 1 avocado

-1 red onion

– jar of Chipotles in Adobo

Let’s do this:

Chop the cilantro, zest and halve the lime. Halve, peel and finely chop 1/2 of the red onion. Peel the mango, cut around the flat seed, then into 1/4-inch slices. Cut the slices into thin strips to create matchsticks.

Make the lime creme: in a small bowl, combine the sour cream, lime zest and a squeeze of lime juice. Season with salt and pepper.

Make the mango slaw: in a medium bowl, toss the mango, red onion,  cilantro, juice of remaining lime and a pinch of salt and pepper.

Halve, pit and scoop out the avocado flesh into a small bowl, mash with fork and season with salt and pepper.

Salt & pepper the chicken on both sides.

Rub or brush both sides of the chicken with 1 tablespoon of adobo (the sauce in the jar of chipotle peppers).

Heat olive oil in large pan, add chicken – cook until slightly charred.

Heat tortillas in the oven or microwave.

Thinly slice the chicken. Spread the mashed avocado onto tortillas and top with chicken, mango slaw and lime creme.

Serve tacos with the remaining mango slaw to the side. If you make it, let me know what you think. Enjoy! 

Housewife + Army Wife + Rachael Ray + Katie Lee

Yesterday was a rough day for me. Nearing the end of a long separation from the hubby should be exciting and happy… yet the end seems to be just as hard as the beginning. Needless to say I sat on the couch and indulged in multiple hours of The Food Network. I then decided; stop watching and start doing. I picked this delish & easy recipe that was made by Katie Lee (Joel) on the Rachel Ray show!

HOT SPINACH & ARTICHOKE DIP

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Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 9-ounce package artichoke hearts (drained jarred, or canned, cooked fresh or frozen, but not marinated)
  • 1 cup steamed spinach – well drained
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 6 large leaves fresh basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Use a 2 quart baking dish. In a food processor, combine the cream cheese, artichoke hearts, spinach, mayonnaise, Parmesan, garlic, basil, salt, and pepper.  Spoon the mixture into the baking dish.  Top with shredded mozzarella. Bake until bubbling and the top is golden brown, about 25 to 30 minutes.

Serve with crackers, tortilla chips, or toasted rustic bread.