bell peppers

Panzanella & Grilled Pork Chops

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If  you never tried  Panzanella, chances are that a dish using stale bread is on the bottom of your “must try this” list.
After all, nowadays stale bread is usually used either for bread pudding, bread dumplings, or, most likely of all – thrown into the garbage bin.
Now, I have to admit that most bread you can buy is best thrown away after a few days, since it was nothing special to begin with. But if you are a fan of really good bread, it would pain you to throw away some of it just because it has survived a few more days than usual and has become a bit stale. If this happens in my kitchen, I usually slice the bread thick and grill it, which will revive it beautifully and will give a loaf at least another 4 days of good use.
Or, surprise surprise – I’ll make  Panzanella.
The first written recipe for  Panzanella dates to the 15th century. Originally, stale bread was soaked in water, onions added, then dressed with olive oil, salt and vinegar. This eventually morphed into the modern  Panzanella through the addition of cucumbers and, later-on, tomatoes.
Later still, lettuce, olives, mozzarella, white wine, capers, anchovies, celery, carrots, red wine, red onion, cucumber, tuna, parsley, boiled eggs, mint, bell peppers, lemon juice, and garlic were sometimes added, although traditionalists still prefer the simple version of soaked bread, onions, olive oil, salt, tomatoes and sometimes fresh basil.
If I prepare  Panzanella as a main dish, I usually add boiled eggs, anchovy fillets, capers, garlic paste, roasted marinated peppers and lots of chives and fresh basil and oregano. I don’t soak my Panzanella  in water but rather in a generous amount of dressing of good olive oil, white balsamic vinegar, kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. I let the salad sit for at least 30 minutes before I dig into it, by which time the dressing has been soaked up by the bread. Usually, I over-eat on this stuff because once I start, I can’t stop until it’s all gone 😦 🙂
However, since I had grilled pork chops with this one, I kept it simple and used only bread, onions, cucumbers, tomatoes, basil and dressing. What a wonderful meal this was…….
So, I hope that next time you have some good, rustic bread which has seen better days, you will give this delicious dish a try 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Panzanella & Grilled Pork Chop

Panzanella & Grilled Pork Chop

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Panzanella & Grilled Pork Chop

Panzanella & Grilled Pork Chop

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
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Beef Kebab With Rainbow Puree

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I was  thinking of preparing beef kebab and mashed potatoes – which I did, but the name “mashed potatoes” will not do justice to this tasty and colorful potato dish.
So therefore,  “Rainbow Puree” was born 🙂
The addition of the sautéed peppers, sun-dried tomatoes and freshly grated horseradish and lot’s of garlic paste lift’s this basic dish to a whole new level…….
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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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More about  Kebabs
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Beef Kebob With Rainbow Puree

Beef Kebab With Rainbow Puree

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Beef Kebob With Rainbow Puree

Beef Kebab With Rainbow Puree

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
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Braised Turkey Leg With Bell Peppers And Great Northern Beans

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Week Three – Monday Dinner – “Hans’ Lighter, Healthier Comfort Food” meal plan
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While  most folks think Turkey is only appropriate as a thanksgiving meal, I enjoy turkey all year-long. Braised turkey legs, turkey giblet adobo, grilled turkey hearts and turkey neck soup are some of my favorite dishes, while the whole turkey serves mostly as a showpiece for family celebration on thanksgiving.
Turkey legs are a lean cut, so they fit perfectly into my meal plan at “Hans’ Lighter, Healthier Comfort Food” meal plan.
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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Braised Turkey With Bell Peppers And Great Northern Beans

Braised Turkey With Bell Peppers And Great Northern Beans

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Aaahhhhhh

Aaahhhhhh

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Preparation :
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Peperonata & Chicken Parisienne

Hans' Lighter, Healthier Comfort Food
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Click here to link to  “Hans’ Lighter, Healthier Comfort Food” 
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Wednesday Dinner – Week Two
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While
 peperonata (peperonate) is a classic, well established Italian dish, this version is adapted to my personal preference of taste and texture.
I used the traditional olive oil, garlic, onions, tomato paste and basil, but instead of the usual mixture of different-colored bell peppers, I used a variety of chilis with different colors and various levels of spiciness, from sweet to very hot. Also, instead of cooking everything down to a soft mash, I left the vegetables with a bit of a bite to make the texture more pleasant. All in all, a successful, different and modern take of a classical dish 🙂
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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Pepperonata & Chicken Parisienne


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Pepperonata & Chicken Parisienne


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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
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Szechuan Chicken & Fan


Since  breakfast was substantial and relatively late, lunch was late as well and will have to do for both lunch and dinner. Well, maybe there is a midnight snack on the horizon, we’ll see 🙂
The red jalapeno peppers I used here were exceptionally fruity and only mildly hot, so they were perfect for my taste and heat tolerance. Please adjust the amount and heat level to your own taste or eliminate the chilies altogether and replace with mushrooms, water chestnuts, bell peppers, green peas, carrots or whatever else strikes your fancy.

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !

Click here for  FAN  (chinese steamed rice ) recipe

 

Szechuan Style Chicken & Fan

Szechuan Chicken & Fan

Szechuan Chicken & Fan

Szechuan Chicken & Fan



Preparation :

season sliced chicken with salt, five spice powder and soy sauce, dust with cornstarch and stir fry in peanut oil

season sliced chicken with salt, five spice powder and soy sauce, dust with cornstarch and stir fry in peanut oil

remove chicken from wok, reserve

remove chicken from wok, reserve

saute chilies and scallions, remove from wok, reserve

saute chilies and scallions, remove from wok, reserve

saute onions and garlic paste in garlic oil

saute onions and garlic paste in garlic oil

add soy sauce, oyster sauce, chicken stock, sesame oil and sugar, simmer until slightly thickened

add soy sauce, oyster sauce, chicken stock, sesame oil and sugar, simmer until slightly thickened

return chicken, chilies and scallions to sauce, remove from heat, check/adjust seasoning

return chicken, chilies and scallions to sauce, remove from heat, check/adjust seasoning

Szechuan Style Chicken & Fan

to serve, sprinkle chicken with white sesame seeds, rice with black sesame seeds

Szechuan Chicken & Fan

Szechuan Chicken & Fan

Szechuan Chicken & Fan

Szechuan Chicken & Fan

Fan (Chinese Steamed Rice)

Fan (Chinese Steamed Rice)



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“ Red Lentils & Bell Pepper Burgers “

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Red Lentils & Bell Pepper Burgers,
Served With Raita

For one of those meatless, healthy day’s  🙂

Ingredients

2 lbs red lentils, cooked until tender

2 lg egg

½ cup panko breadcrumbs

1 med green bell pepper, diced, sautéed

1 med red bell pepper, diced, sautéed

1 med onion, finely diced, sautéed

Garlic, minced, to taste, sautéed

2 tblsp Cilantro,  coarsely chopped

Cumin, to taste

Curry powder, to taste

Kosher salt, to taste

Cayenne pepper, to taste

Oil to sauté


Method

Mix all ingredients except the tofu and oil. Shape into ball’s, make an indent and fill with tofu.
Sprinkle lightly with additional bread crumb’s and sauté until golden and heated through

Raita

Grated cucumbers greek yoghurt, garlic powder, cilantro, salt, pepper.
Use quantities according to your preferences.

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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