This quick and easy sheet pan meal is a delicious Mediterranean dish that doesn't disappoint. Not only is it delicious with shrimp but you can substitute the shrimp with cooked rotisserie chicken too! I had all the ingredients on hand so no extra shopping was needed. I just had to defrost the shrimp in the morning and prep was unbelievably fast. If you're not watching carbs then serve this over pasta or rice. I served mine over red leaf lettuce while my husband had it over rice. We both loved it.😋 😋
1 lb large raw shrimp, peeled, deveined with tails on or off (your preference)
1/3 cup thinly sliced shallots
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp sea salt
a pinch of red pepper flakes (or more if you like the heat)
1 cup cherry tomatoes
1/4 cup Kalamata olives, halved
2 Tablespoons lemon juice, divided
3 Tablespoons EVOO, divided 2 + 1
1/4 cup roughly chopped parsley
1/3 – 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
lemon wedges, optional
Preheat the oven to 425ºF.
Using a rimmed baking sheet, toss the shallots, garlic, salt, red pepper flakes, tomatoes, olives, 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice, & 2 tablespoons of the EVOO.
Roast for 5 minutes, or until the shallots & garlic are starting to brown.
Add the shrimp and cook 5 minutes more, or until shrimp are done. *
Stir in the feta, parsley and the remaining tablespoon of lemon juice and EVOO.
Toss gently and serve hot over a bed of lettuce for a delicious low carb meal.
Notes: * If substituting with cooked, rotisserie chicken, cook just to heat the chicken in step 4.
This is a light dish which will serve 2-3. Double the recipe for more servings.
Recipe adapted from Zenbelly.
Bake at 425 degrees for 5 minutes
Add the shrimp
For low carb serve hot over a bed of lettuce
If not watching carbs serve hot over rice or pasta
One of our favorite all-time meals to eat is Shrimp Scampi over linguine pasta, topped with Pecorino Romano grated cheese, some crusty Italian bread to soak up the lemony butter sauce and we’re in heaven! Since Barbara is back on Keto, we wanted to come up with the same delicious flavor without the carbs. Zucchini is an amazing vegetable that takes the place of pasta and delivers all the delicious flavor of our original shrimp scampi recipe. We decided to make a one-pan dish so we used the electric skillet. It’s large and can accommodate all the shrimp in a single layer plus all the spiralized zucchini. If your watching carbs, please give it a try. We promise you will not miss the pasta! 😋 😋
2 lbs large raw shrimp
2 sticks salted butter
10 medium zucchini and/or summer squash, spiralized
1/2 stick salted butter for zucchini
1-2 tsp salt
8 Dorot frozen garlic cubes (we use for consistency)
1/4 cup fresh parsley leaves, chopped
2 tsp grated lemon peel
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
lemon slices for garnish (optional)
Pecorino Romano, grated
Remove shells from shrimp, leaving the shell on the tail section if desired.
Devein then wash under running cold water, and drain on paper towels; pat dry.
In the electric skillet on the warmest setting, melt 2 sticks of salted butter.
When butter is melted, add the salt, garlic, and 2 Tablespoon parsley; mix well.
Arrange the shrimp in a single layer in the skillet.
Raise skillet temperature to 300ºF. As soon as shrimp start to turn pink (1 or 2 minutes) quickly turn the shrimp over and ower to warm setting again.
Sprinkle with lemon peel, lemon juice, and remaining parsley. Raise temperature to 300ºF.
Cook about 1-2 minutes longer or just until shrimp are tender. Do Not overcook shrimp or they will be tough. (If using smaller shrimp, cut down on the cooking time)
Remove shrimp with half the scampi sauce and set aside in a bowl.
Add the 1/2 stick of butter to the skillet then add the spiralized zucchini to the scampi sauce and stir well to coat with sauce. Cover and cook until zucchini are soft but not overcooked.
Arrange the desired amount of zucchini noodles (zoodles) in a pasta dish then top with shrimp. Add some of the reserved scampi sauce on top. Grate some Pecorino Romano cheese and garnish with a thin slice of lemon (optional).
Notes: If you don’t have an electric skillet please use our oven method Shrimp Scampi recipe then cook the zucchini separate using 1/2 stick butter in a large skillet with half the scampi sauce reserve from shrimp cooked in the oven.
This summer we have an abundance of basil from both our hay bale gardens and have been making pesto like crazy. Not only is pesto delicious on pasta but it's just as delicious on fish, vegetables, chicken or just about anything! Last year our friend Jane grew tomatoes and basil in hay bales...we grew ours in traditional dirt. The difference was amazing...the hay bale crop far exceeded the traditional dirt crop and made us and Gary believers. Gary bought the bales at the local hardware store then quickly got to preparing them with fertilizer and water. After two weeks of daily watering, we planted our basil and tomatoes along with some other herbs and couldn't be happier with the results. If you never tried this method before, it's definitely worth the minimal effort.😋😋
Pesto Sauce Ingredients
3 Tablespoons Pignoli Nuts (Italian pine nuts)
1 tsp Kosher salt
3 cloves garlic, peeled
2 cups fresh sweet Italian basil leaves, packed tightly (approximately 2 very large bunches)
8 Tablespoons EVOO, preferably Ligurian as it makes a big difference in taste
1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, freshly grated
Pesto Sauce Directions
In a food processor add pignoli nuts, salt, and garlic cloves. Pulse into a smooth paste.
Add the basil in small amounts then pulse after each addition, until all the basil has been added and the mixture is creamy & smooth. Slowly (slow is key here) add the EVOO until emulsified.
Add cheese and pulse to incorporate.
If too dry add additional EVOO slowly, 1 Tablespoon at a time.
The other night we were so engrossed with updating this blog that we completely forgot about dinner! We realized it at 5:00 pm! After searching in the refrigerator we found country sausage, zucchini, and some leftover tomato sauce so we whipped up a really quick & tasty dinner. On nights when you are pressed for time, this recipe is not only quick & easy but also delicious, healthy & satisfying. There's a bonus too... it's low carb, keto-friendly, and gluten-free. You won't miss the pasta at all. Our family loves it with ricotta cheese on top...it's delicious! Give it a try and let us hear from you. 😋😋
2 cloves garlic (we use Dorot frozen cubes for consistency)
1 lb bulk Neese’s Sausage, hot or regular
2 Tablespoons butter
1 cup pre-made tomato sauce (more or less depending on your preference)
salt & pepper to taste
ricotta (for topping)
Pecorino Romano cheese, grated
Wash unpeeled zucchini then dry well. Cut the end stem from one end of the zucchini then using the spiralizer thick ribbon blade, spiralize all the zucchini. Set aside.
In a large hot skillet place the bulk sausage and brown completely on all sides, crumbling the sausage as it cooks.
Add the garlic and continue cooking another minute. Stir well then add the butter combining well.
Add the zucchini spirals and mix with the sausage.
Cook until zucchini is soft or al dente then add a cup of pre-made tomato sauce and mix well. Heat until sauce is hot. Remove from heat.
Serve in a pasta dish and sprinkle with grated Pecorino Ramano cheese then top with a dollop of creamy ricotta cheese and enjoy.
Add Zucchini noodles after browning sausage meat
Add tomato sauce
Notes: Additional tomato sauce may be added depending on your preference. For those of you who must have pasta, just cook up a little gluten-free pasta (or regular pasta if gluten is not a health issue) and add the cooked pasta at the end to combine with the zoodles.
Move over Chicken Marsala...we're here to introduce you to our juicy Chicken Maderia that will elevate your dinner to a whole new level that's sure to please! Tender chicken breasts combined with mushrooms and asparagus in a wonderful creamy Madeira sauce topped with melted gooey mozzarella (or as our old family from Brooklyn would say, Mootzadell, dropping the last vowel of a word was very common because they were always in a hurry! In carrying on that tradition, we think we'll start to call it Mootz) 😂😂 Whichever way you pronounce it, this dish is delicious. Our family loves this chicken dish and we hope it will become a new favorite of yours. We're sure your family and friends will be asking for more just like ours do so you might want to make a double batch! 😋 😋
12 -15 thinly sliced chicken breasts, season with salt & pepper
2 bundles of asparagus, blanched
6 Tablespoons butter, divided
4 Tablespoons EVOO, divided
32 oz small button mushrooms, washed and dried thoroughly
4 Tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped plus extra for garnish
3 cups Madeira wine
3 cups beef stock or broth
1 cup heavy cream
2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
salt & pepper to taste
Trim asparagus by snapping the ends off. Wash well and set aside.
In a large saucepan, bring salted water to a boil, enough to cover asparagus and boil for 3-4 minutes. Remove to a large bowl filled with ice water to stop color turning. Drain well then set aside.
In a large oven-proof skillet on medium-high heat melt half the butter & half the EVOO until hot. Add the whole mushrooms and cook 5 minutes until golden brown. Add the onion and cook 3-4 minutes then add the garlic & parsley. Cook an additional 2 minutes. Remove the mushroom mixture to a separate bowl and set aside.
In the same skillet on medium-high heat, add the remaining butter and EVOO. Once hot, place seasoned chicken breasts in a single layer and sear quickly about 2 minutes on each side, just to get golden brown. Do not overcook as the chicken will finish cooking when everything is combined. Remove chicken and drain in layers on paper towels. Set aside.
In the same skillet on high, add the Maderia wine and boil until reduced by half, approximately 6-8 minutes. Add the beef broth and boil for about 10 -12 minutes until reduced to half.
Reduce heat to medium. Stir in heavy cream and simmer until sauce thickens. Season with salt & pepper to taste. (Sauce will not be real thick; however, you may add a small amount of flour to thicken)
Add chicken back to skillet coating both sides with sauce. Add the mushroom mixture and asparagus on top then sprinkle with the shredded mozzarella.
Broil on top rack in the oven just until cheese is melted. Remove from oven, garnish with parsley and serve.
Notes: For a large crowd, simply triple the recipe. This recipe is Gluten-Free & Keto-Friendly as long as you don’t add flour. Chicken Madeira is a delicious meal on its own but if you’re looking to stretch it, serve with pasta or rice to soak up the amazing Madeira sauce.
Casseroles are a great way to combine your family's favorite vegetables into a one-dish meal that is sure to please. Our family loves eggplant, zucchini, ricotta cheese & mozzarella (among many other foods) so we combined all those ingredients into a delicious casserole? They loved this dish so much that they requested it 3 nights in a row! You can make this casserole with or without sausage because it's just as hardy without it plus you get the added bonus of it being Gluten-Free and Keto friendly if you follow a keto diet. You and your family will love it! 😋😋
2 medium eggplants, firm to touch
2 medium zucchini or summer squash (or 1 of each, personal preference )
1 lb bulk Italian Sweet or Hot Sausage, optional (bulk country sausage can be substituted)
2 pints cherry tomatoes
8-10 large cloves garlic, unpeeled
enough EVOO to lightly coat all the sliced eggplant & zucchini before roasting, plus extra for lightly coating the baking sheet
salt, pepper, and garlic powder to season eggplant & zucchini before roasting
1 cup ricotta (we used whole milk but you can use skim or fat-free if desired)
1/2 beaten egg
2 shakes crushed red pepper (more or less to taste)
1/2 cup Pecorino Romano, grated plus extra for between layers
8 oz. mozzarella, grated & divided in half
1 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped & divided plus a few whole leaves for garnish
Cut the end stems from each end of the eggplant, zucchini or summer squash.
Slice into 1/2-inch thick round pieces.
With a small pastry brush, lightly brush EVOO over both sides of the eggplant and zucchini.
Position your oven racks to upper and lower thirds of your oven.
Preheat oven to 500ºF. Once it reaches 500ºF lower to 425ºF.
On a small rimmed baking sheet (no parchment paper) place tomatoes and unpeeled garlic cloves.
Drizzle 1 Tablespoon EVOO over the tomatoes & unpeeled garlic. Toss with your hands to coat, roast on the top oven rack for 15-20 minutes until tomatoes blister & garlic is soft & caramelized. Remove from oven when done and set aside to cool.
Line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper and drizzle a very small amount of EVOO in each pan.
Arrange the eggplant slices in a singer layer in one of the pans then arrange the zucchini in the second pan.
Sprinkle salt, pepper and garlic powder over the tops of eggplant & zucchini only.
Using a pastry brush, use 2 Tablespoons or more of EVOO to lightly brush over the eggplant and zucchini slices in both pans (both sides).
Place pan with eggplant on top oven rack and zucchini on middle rack and roast at 425ºF for 15-25 minutes until nicely browned but not burnt. Zucchini might brown before the eggplant so check often as individual oven temperatures vary.
Once browned, use a spatula to flip eggplant & zucchini over. Continue roasting the eggplant & zucchini until brown, about 10 minutes, checking often.
Once done, remove from oven & let cool.
In a medium skillet brown the bulk sausage meat until fully cooked. Drain & set aside in a bowl until ready to begin layering process.
In a medium bowl combine 1 cup ricotta, red pepper flakes, 1/2 beaten egg, 2 Tablespoons chopped basil, grated Pecorino Romano cheese, and 6 oz mozzarella. Drizzle a tsp of EVOO and mix with a fork to combine. Add salt to taste.
Remove the cooked garlic cloves from the cooled tomato pan & move to a cutting board. Using a fork, press on the skins to remove the soft, caramelized garlic. The skins can be discarded. Mash the cloves into a paste then add to the ricotta mixture and combine well.
In a shallow 2-qt baking dish drizzle some EVOO on the bottom. Arrange 1/3 of the eggplant & zucchini in a single layer. Add 1/3 the blistered tomatoes and scatter them around. Add a dollop of ricotta evenly over each vegetable section (do not spread, leave dollop as is). Add half the drained cooked sausage and sprinkle on top of ricotta dollops. Sprinkle with grated Pecorino Romano cheese.
Tear some of the basil leaves and generously scatter around the first layer.
Repeat step 18 & 19 for the second layer.
Add remaining ricotta mixture on top of the second layer, top with remaining slices of eggplant & zucchini then add the remaining tomatoes on top. Sprinkle with grated Pecorino Roman cheese and top with remaining shredded mozzarella.
Bake approximately 20 – 25 minutes at 425 ºF or until cheese is melted and casserole is bubbling.
Remove from oven. Let cool 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with fresh basil leaves and serve.
Let cool for 10 minutes before cutting & serving
Slice the eggplant & zucchini into 1/2″ thick rounds
Place Combination of Eggplant & Zucchini on bottom of 2-qt casserole dish
Add 1/3 of the roasted tomatoes
Add 1/3 ricotta in dollops then sprinkle with chopped basil & top with cooked sausage
Add the second layer
top with remaining ricotta mixture & top with Mozzarella
Notes: 2 large and 1 small rimmed baking sheets are needed for this recipe. We used Neese’s Country Sausage (bulk) in this recipe; however, the meat is optional. Add some sauteed mushrooms if you’re a mushroom lover like Teresa is. Can be served as a main dish (4-5 servings) or a side dish (6-8 servings).
Italian Sausage & Peppers has been a favorite in our family for as long as we can remember. Typically our parents and grandparents used only green bell peppers but we always liked to use a mix of red, orange and yellow bells for taste and pop of color. For an easy weeknight dinner-this Classic Italian meal is delicious and if there are any leftovers you can combine with scrambled eggs for breakfast or sandwiches for lunch the next day! It’s so easy and quick to cook you’ll surely want to make this a regular item on your menu. Whether you serve it casually as a sandwich or over your favorite pasta you’re family or guests will love it. 😋😋
12 Italian Sausage links (mix sweet and hot together for a little heat)
2 Red Bell peppers, sliced lengthwise into 1-inch pieces
1 Yellow Bell peppers, sliced lengthwise into 1-inch pieces
1 Orange Bell Peppers, sliced lengthwise into 1-inch pieces
1 Green Bell pepper (Optional), sliced lengthwise into 1-inch pieces
2 large onions, sliced thick
3-4 large garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
1 Tablespoon of dried oregano
2 Tablespoons EVOO
Salt and Pepper to taste
In a large skillet (we use a 16-inch electric skillet with lid) heat 2 Tablespoons of EVOO on medium.
Place all sausages in a covered skillet and brown on all sides. (Cook sausages in 2 batches if using a smaller skillet).
Once browned add oregano, peppers, and onions and cook covered 7-10 minutes until vegetables are softened and slightly charred/browned. Stir regularly.
Add garlic and continue cooking for 1 minute.
At this point, you can serve hot as is or add some Basic Tomato Sauce and serve over pasta or rice.
Notes: It’s important to cook the sausage & peppers in a covered skillet to keep in the juices and get the sausages tender. This recipe can be doubled or tripled for a large party gathering. It’s always a big hit and chances are there won’t be any leftovers!
8 Mahi-Mahi fillets (or fish fillets of your choice)- cut into 3 or 4-inch sections.
1 large onion, chopped fine
1 lemon, juiced
1 lime, juiced
1 lime, sliced thin for garnish
5 tomatoes, seeded & chopped
5-6 shallots, chopped
1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped
Capers (8 oz. jar)
1 cup EVOO
1½ tsp fresh thyme (more or less to taste)
In a medium bowl combine the EVOO, capers, basil, thyme, shallots, tomatoes, lemon juice, lime juice, onions, 1½ tsp salt & 1½ tsp pepper. Mix well, cover and refrigerate at least an hour or overnight.
Position your oven rack at about 5 inches from the broiler and preheat the broiler.
Place the fish fillets on a baking sheet then season with salt & pepper.
Broil fillets on first side approximately 2-3 minutes, being careful not to overcook as they cook quickly.
Remove from broiler and turn fillets over.
Top each fillet with a scoop of vegetable salsa.
Return to broiler and cook until fish is fully cooked through the middle. The fish should be opaque in color.
Garnish each dish with a slice of lime. Serve as is with a salad or over your favorite rice or pasta.
As with ethnic food all over the world there are as many versions of Spanakopita as there are Greek Islands, so I am happy to share with you the version I learned to make at the cooking class I took in Athens at THE GREEK KITCHEN. Our class was small with only 6 students which made our hands-on experience so enjoyable! It's really fun to make, easy and so versatile. 😋
1 package frozen phyllo dough (defrosted overnight in the refrigerator)
50ml EVOO (4-5 Tablespoons)
2 spring onions (aka scallions or green onions)
300g spinach, fresh, wilted (1 ½ -2 cups)
1/4 bunch of mint
2 sprigs fresh oregano
200g feta cheese, crumbled (8 ounces)
generous amount of freshly ground pepper
Preheat oven to 355°F, set to fan mode if possible.
Finely chop spinach, mint, spring onions, dill, and leek. Add them to a large bowl.
Add 2 ½ Tablespoons of the EVOO, salt, pepper, oregano and the feta cheese to the bowl. Stir and your filling is ready!
Remove the phyllo dough from the package and cut the tape with scissors and spread the sheets of phyllo out on a clean working surface.
Dip a pastry brush into the remaining EVOO and drizzle over the sheet of phyllo dough without letting the brush directly touch the phyllo. The reason you don’t allow the brush to touch the sheets is that the sheets will stick together and won’t bake correctly.
Cover with a second sheet of phyllo and drizzle with EVOO.
Spread the filling in a straight line and roll the phyllo, then shape it into a spiral-like form and place it in the pan.
Eggwash the top of the formed spiral, drizzle a small amount of EVOO, sprinkle with some sesame seeds, and finally sprinkle some water sparingly to prevent drying out.
Bake for 35-40 minutes until the spirals are golden.
Remove from the oven and let cool on a rack for 15 minutes. Enjoy!
Notes: Spanakopita is wonderful on its own as a main dish but can also be cut into 2-3 inch pieces and served as an appetizer with Tzatziki sauce for dipping. You can really substitute any leafy vegetable or cheese you like to make your own family favorite.
Avgolemono is a staple in Greek cooking used for sauces and soups. The only ingredients are eggs, lemon juice, and broth. I asked Marina, my wonderful tour guide in Athens, what her favorite Greek dish was and she was kind enough to share it with me. She enjoys this dish with either chicken or pork and since we had chicken tenders on hand we made the dish with chicken. The blended flavors worked so well together...mild, but extremely flavorful. Our husbands and nephew along with myself and Barbara really enjoyed this dish, which we served over Jasmine rice. This will definitely be a repeat meal for family and friends!😋😋
1/2 cup EVOO
2 lbs chicken tenders or pork (cut into 1″ pieces)
3 leeks, diced
3 spring onions (scallions), diced
3 carrots, diced
2 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock
1/2 cup white wine
celery leaves or parsley cut into pieces (we used Italian parsley)
1/4 cup fresh dill, chopped
juice of 1 large lemon
1 extra large egg, room temperature
salt & pepper to taste
In a large skillet heat the EVOO over medium-high heat.
Season the meat chunks with salt & freshly ground pepper.
Saute until nicely browned on both sides, do not overcook.
Remove the meat to a platter and keep warm.
Add the leeks, carrots, and onions to hot skillet & saute until nicely tender, about 5-7 minutes.
Add the wine and let it evaporate. Once evaporated, add the stock and simmer 3-5 minutes.
Add the parsley or celery leaves, stir, then add the meat. Remove from heat.
In a medium bowl, using a whisk, beat the egg until frothy. Slowly whisk in the lemon juice.
Ladle 1 cup of the skillet liquid little by little into the egg mixture, constantly whisking to temper the egg & prevent curdling.
Add the egg-lemon mixture to the skillet, stirring gently. Serve immediately over rice or pasta.