Back on Track…Sort Of

Now, when I travel I have the mindset that calories don’t count.  Unfortunately this is not true, but wouldn’t it be wonderful if it was?  I also noticed that I used to buy magazines like Cosmopolitan to flip through while waiting for my flights, nowadays I gravitate towards magazines like Food Network, Southern Living and Food and Wine…oh how the times have changed.

On my most recent trip I picked up the new Food Network Magazine.  This months issue is probably one the best, full of delicious looking recipes, lots of pictures which will make you hungry and the main feature is cheese, you can never go wrong with cheese.

As soon as I got home from my trip I handed Eric the magazine and within 2 minutes he marked a bunch of recipes.  We narrowed it down to two for this week, as we are traveling to NY tomorrow.  Both recipes were so good and the best part, pretty healthy which is nice considering I’ve eaten out for the last week.

I don’t usually like to post more than one recipe, but today is your lucky day, you get two fantastic recipes.

Recipe #1

Greek Shrimp and Couscous (courtesy of Food Network Magazine)

Ingredients

1 cup whole-wheat couscous (I used regular couscous but added onions for more flavor)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
Pinch of red pepper flakes
2 medium plum tomatoes, diced
1 small bulb fennel, halved, cored and sliced
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/3 cup dry white wine
1 15-ounce can no-salt-added chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 scallions, sliced (I forgot to add these..oops)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese (about 2 ounces) (I’m not a fan of Feta, but I found tomato and basil feta, OMG, I think it made the dish better)

Directions

Prepare the couscous as the label directs. Cover and keep warm until ready to serve.

Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add the shrimp and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring occasionally, until the shrimp are pink, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate using a slotted spoon.

Preheat the broiler. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in the skillet. Add the tomatoes, fennel and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, about 4 minutes. Add the wine and bring to a simmer, then add the chickpeas and 1/3 cup water; cook, stirring occasionally, until the chickpeas are slightly softened, about 3 minutes. Return the shrimp to the skillet and add the scallions and 1 tablespoon dill. Top with the feta, transfer to the broiler and broil until golden, about 2 minutes. Sprinkle with the remaining 1 tablespoon dill. Fluff the couscous with a fork and serve with the shrimp mixture.

ShrimpandFeta

Verdict:  We both loved this.  There weren’t any leftovers, which was pretty sad because I would have loved to have it for lunch.  Best part of the recipe is that you don’t even need to add the shrimp, I think it would be great as a vegetarian meal.  I would suggest using the tomato-basil feta, it really added more flavor.

Recipe #2

Chicken Fajitas (Food Network Magazine)

Ingredients

1 teaspoon chili powder
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts (I used chicken tenders)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 bell peppers (any color), sliced
1 red onion, sliced
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon grated lime zest, plus wedges for serving
8 corn tortillas (I like to use whole wheat and corn blend tortillas….delish)
1/2 cup prepared pico de gallo or fresh salsa
1/3 cup crumbled cotija cheese (about 1 1/2 ounces)

Directions

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Mix the chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon cumin, and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper and rub on the chicken breasts.

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook, turning, until golden, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a baking sheet, reserving the skillet, and bake until just cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board to rest, 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in the reserved skillet over medium heat. Add the bell peppers, onion, garlic and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon cumin and cook, stirring, until the vegetables are lightly browned, 8 minutes. Stir in the lime zest and 2 tablespoons water. Season with salt.

Wrap the tortillas in aluminum foil and warm in the oven, 5 minutes, then divide among plates. Slice the chicken. Top the tortillas with the chicken, bell pepper mixture, pico de gallo and cheese. Serve with lime wedges.

Fajitas

Verdict:  Probably going to add this to the list of recurring recipes.  I added avocado (big surprise, right?)  The cheese took it over the top and added an extra layer of texture and flavor.  Eric loved it.  I feel we have tacos a lot, but they’re easy, can be made healthy and are pretty quick for a weeknight meal.

Tonight we have a hockey game, so we’ll be eating out.  This week will be another culinary adventure, destination western NY.  I’ll keep you posted on the many delicious food finds.  I’m really looking forward to Tim Horton’s breakfast sandwich and probably a cheeseburger from Bill Gray’s.  I’m pretty sure my diet re-starts next week.

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