Thursday, July 26, 2012

My Tzatziki Sauce

I love Greek food!  Monday, we had gyro from our favorite local Greek restaurant.  It inspired me to make a variation of my husband's Greek-style burgers (recipe soon) and a creamy, cool tzatziki sauce.  I forgot to take a picture of both, but I hope you give this a try.  Tzatziki is a cucumber yogurt sauce with many uses.  It is great on top of burgers, chicken, salad, and anything else that could use a great sauce.  While mine isn't necessarily "classic," it is yummy.  Its also really easy!

Tzatziki Sauce

  • Plain, whole fat yogurt (or Greek style yogurt if you want to save the straining step)
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill (or slightly less dried dill)
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp salt (or more to taste)
  • 1 tsp pepper
  1. Shred the cucumber.  Put in a colander of some sort (with small enough holes that the cucumber won't fall through) on top of a bowl and place a paper towel on top.  Place something heavy on top to help squeeze excess water from the cucumber.  Let sit for about 20 minutes.
  2. Place yogurt in a towel or paper towel fine mesh sieve.  Let sit over a bowl or sink for about 20 minutes with the cucumber to get rid of excess whey.  You are essentially making a Greek yogurt with this step.
  3. Once the draining of excess liquid is done, mix together all of your ingredients: yogurt, cucumber, dill, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
  4. Let sit for a half hour in the fridge before serving.  This step lets the flavors meld.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Caprese Chicken

I've been a little absent lately, but there hasn't been much cooking lately in my house.  Its been hot and, without air conditioning, the want to cook is missing.  When I have cooked, its been a lot of basics or things you've seen already: chicken tikka masala, enchilada casserole, chocolate mousse, and some pork stir fry (which I might share soon).

One of my favorite combinations for summer is tomatoes and basil, so when I came upon a recipe for Caprese Chicken, I had to try it.  I don't have a grill, so I had to come up with some alterations for this recipe.  It has cool, creamy cheese with fresh, bright basil on warm chicken with a zingy balsamic glaze.

Caprese Chicken
adapted from: Add A Pinch

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 1 pound fresh mozzarella cheese
  • a handful of basil leaves
  • 1 or 2 tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper
  • olive oil
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Drizzle olive oil on chicken breasts and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Bake until thoroughly cooked, 30-40 minutes.
  2. Slice mozzarella cheese and tomatoes about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick.
  3. Heat balsamic vinegar in a small sauce pan or saute pan over medium-high heat until it starts to bubble.  Turn heat down to medium and simmer until the vinegar reduces down and becomes much thicker, between 5 and 10 minutes.  Remove from heat.
  4. Start to build your caprese chicken stack: place mozzarella, tomato, and one or two basil leaves on top of the chicken breast.  Drizzle balsamic glaze over chicken and enjoy!