Mini Pita Pizzas

So I totally stole this from my brother-in-law.  He made them for us one evening and they are stellar.

Serves 4

4 8inch Whole Wheat Pitas

4 tbsp Pesto

8 tbsp Pizza Sauce

2 BBQed Chicken Breasts (diced)

1/2 Package Turkey Bacon

2 Cup Diced Spinach

1 Green Pepper (diced)

1/2 Medium Onion (diced)

2 Cups Mozzarella Cheese (Grated)

Preheat your oven to 350F.  Spoon a tbsp of pesto on each pita.  Spread evenly.  Spoon 2 tbsp pizza sauce on each pita.  Spread evenly.  Now top the pizza with a portion of the chicken, bacon, onion, peppers and spinach.  Finish it off with the cheese.  Bake the pizzas right on the rack for about 10 minutes.

Super simple and super tasty.  But wait!  You like pineapple on your pizza!?  Ok.  Put some on!  You can swap out whatever you want.  Just don’t over-top the pizzas or they won’t cook properly.  Also, because of the short cook time, pre-cook all meat and if you want softer veggies, pre-cook them a little as well.  Another neat tip is you can prep a lot of topping and have it a few times in a week.  Then all you have to do it top and cook.

Once again thank to Josh and Sonia for the great recipe.  Comment below with your own pizza topping ideas!

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A few things to mention

It has been quite some time since I last posted and this post will be a bit of a mixed bag.  I can tell by the piles of emails and comments that my throng of devoted readers has missed my postings but fear not, I will try to do a little more.

First off a quick D&D update.  Our heroes defeated the Sharn, snagged another one of the legendary weapons and headed back to the university.  Once there they got word that the Bard’s home town was under siege by the undead (yes, them again!) so they traveled to the Dalelands.  After training up some recruits, the town was again besieged by the walking aberrations.  The heroes classed in the streets and drove back the dark forces.  We leave them preparing retaliation.

I am taking a break from my D&D posts because our group is taking a break from my campaign.  One of the other fellows wants to try his hand at DMing and I really don’t mind just sitting back and playing for a while.  I may do something either here or on another site to review the goings on of his adventures.  I might do something interesting and write it like a journal of my character.  Anyway just some ideas.

Back to the real world.  I really haven’t done much new stuff in the way of cooking.  That is to say I haven’t done any of my own stuff.  I have been trying a few things but they have been from recipes so I don’t feel I can take any real credit for them.  I will, however, shout out to this recipe for butter chicken.

http://www.foodnetwork.ca/recipes/Main/Chicken/recipe.html?dishid=8423

It was really neat to cook because the flavour really doesn’t come together until the end.  It turned out super tasty.

The other really quick recipe I want to share is something Tam has started drinking.  Just take a can of club soda and add a lemon wedge and a lime wedge.  It is very low calorie and extremely refreshing.  Also, if you add a shot of vodka it becomes a great little summer drink.  It is so much better for you then Sprite.

The last think I want to touch on is I am getting really into photography.  Tam got a Canon EOS Rebel T1i for Christmas.  I did most of the research on the camera before we got it so in my learning I got very interested in the whole process.  So I am starting this new hobby and I will be making posts about it.  You can catch some of my updates on Facebook and Twitter as well as my Flickr account.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/nimrod108/

I am really open to any feedback as I am really just starting out.  I hope to improve and slowly upgrade my gear.  I will also post stuff shot by Tam as she has a great eye for things.

Thanks again to my loyal readers.  I guess this is happy new year!

Hawaiian style stuffed pork chops

These are tasty chops that are great on the grill.

6 boneless pork chops
1 small tin pinaple (pieces)
6 slices of mozzarella cheese
teriyaki sauce
soy sauce

Start by making a pocket in the pork chops.  Using a small, sharp knife, stab into the side of the pork chop.  Slide the knife back and forth without cutting through the other side of the chop.  You don’t want to butterfly the chop.

Once you have made a pocket, stuff the cheese and a few pieces of pineapple into each chop.  Put the chops in a marinating dish.  drizzle some soy sauce on the chops.  Pour a generous amount of teriyaki sauce on the chops.  Pour the pineapple juice from the tin on the chops.  Let them sit for at least 1 hour, turning after 30.  You can have them marinate for up to 8 hours.  The longer the better.

Grill the chops on medium high heat for about 4-5 minutes a turn (that means 8-10 mins per side).  For more information on how to turn your meat on the BBQ, see my post on how to cook a steak here.  When you first put the chops on the grill brush with some of the marinate.  Brush again after each turn.

Pull the chops off the grill, cover with tin foil and let the meat rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.  You can use the leftover pineapple for fruit salad.  You can ask the Lady of the Lake for her fruit salad recipe.

Post your comments below.

Simple strawberry spinach salad

This is a recipe we learned from a friend of ours. I added the almonds and onions for a little extra something something.

1 bag fresh spinach
2 cups sliced fresh strawberries
½ cup sliced almonds
½ red onion
raspberry vinaigrette

Wash and dry the spinach and place in a salad bow. Slice the strawberries into nice flat pieces and toss into the bowl. Slice the onion so you have nice long thin pieces of onion. The thinner the better. If the onion is very large only use ¼ of the onion. Throw the onion into the bowl. Toss in the almonds. Dress with about ¼ cup of dressing to start with. Toss the salad and taste. Adjust dressing to taste. Serve!

As always please leave comments and suggestions.

Chillin' and grillin'

I have recently become obsessed with deal website, especially ones that offer freebies. I have all manor of samples and tee-shirt showing up in the mail. Recently I found a great freebie download. It is a grilling guide from Martha ‘Hardtime’ Stewart. It is from her satellite radio show and has recopies from her and other gust chefs. You can grab it at:

http://www.sirius.com/marthastewartlivingradio

I tried the Whole Chicken Spatchcock and I will never roast a chicken on the grill any other way. The other recipes sound really good as well and I can’t wait to try them.

With this chicken I cooked it with the recommended wood chips for smoke. I did have a little trouble with the indirect heating on my grill. I figured out that the trick is to leave the off side on full heat and then keep your food side on low heat until the BBQ reaches temp. Make sure you turn your food side back on low after each time you open the lid to glaze. This is also the first time I used a meat thermometer for cooking and it is a great investment. I am always worried about underdone chicken and this removed all the guesswork without cutting into the bird.

Anyway I am super stoked about grilling season and this was a great way to really kick it off. Please leave comments and if you have a great recipe you want to share let me know and I can throw it up as a guest post.

Fresh salsa

Nothing is better with a nice light beer sitting on the patio.  This makes a good batch of salsa.

2 cups diced tomatoes (I use roma)
1 small onion (diced)
3 cloves minced garlic
1 jalapeño pepper de-seeded and finely diced
1 tbsp diced fresh cilantro
juice from 1 lemon
2 tsp salt
2 tsp pepper

combine all the ingredients and refrigerate for about 10 minutes.  Taste it and adjust salt and lemon as desired.  Mix well one more time and serve with some blue corn chips (just because I like to be fancy.  It works great with any tortilla chips).  Goes great with some homemade guacamole!

One pan Chicken Fajitas

Here is how I make fajitas.  It is pretty simple and fairly healthy (I think).

1 large chicken breast
1 sweet pepper (any colour)
1 small onion
4-5 white mushrooms
1 can black beans
1/2 cup salsa
4 tbsp chili powder
3-4 cloves fresh garlic
2 tbsp cooking oil
2 cups diced lettuce
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
6-8 12″ soft tortillas
salsa
sour ceram

Turn your oven onto about 200F.  Throw your tortillas onto a baking sheet and let them get warm in the oven.

Cut your chicken into long strips and throw into a large frying pan (I use my wok) with the oil over medium high heat.  Cook until chicken is just about brown.  Add the garlic, chili powder and 1/2 cup of salsa to the chicken and let the chicken finish cooking.  Please note always make sure your chicken is fully cooked before adding your veggies.  Another helpful and healthy tip is that if your chicken starts to stick to the pan, don’t add more oil, instead add a little water to the pan, the chicken should un-stick quickly.

While the chicken is cooking, dice the pepper, onion and mushrooms.  Cut the veggies into long strips to match the chicken.  Once the chicken is cooked, throw in the veggies.  Once the veggies start to soften, drain and add the black beans.  Once the beans are warm, remove the fajita fill from the stove.

Remove the warm tortillas and you are ready to eat.  The nice thing about fajitas is that everyone builds their own.  Just have them spoon some fill onto a tortilla, throw on some cheese, salsa, lettuce and sour cream, and then roll.  They are a one pan meal that combines your meat, veg and side all into one.  If you want to add something else you can’t go wrong with chips and fresh cut salsa or maybe some mexi-rice.