Grilled Mediterranean Zucchini with Orzo and Feta

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Happy Zucchini Season!! While I don’t have a garden and am not growing zucchini myself, I feel like all I see on Instagram right now are people showing off their zucchini crop. I'm not going to lie, I’m a little bit jealous and was googling “what can you grow in pots on patios” just last week.

So while I don’t have my own harvest of zucchini, it is still abundant at every farmer's market and grocery store, and, best of all, it's super inexpensive right now. So if it’s cheap, why not utilize it as much as possible right?

Now, while you can hide zucchini in so many things, it’s also great to celebrate it every now and then and make it the star of the dish - and that is exactly what this dish does. Topped with orzo flavoured with lemon, balsamic and red pepper flakes it is perfectly balanced with the tender grilled zucchini.

If you have the opportunity to grill up your zucchini on a bbq I highly recommend doing it - you get to enjoy the wonderful smokey flavour from the grill that complements the Mediterranean flavours so well, but if you don’t have a bbq close by you can certainly use a grill pan and still get all of those beautiful grill marks.

So whether you have an overabundance of zucchini and just need to use it up, or you’re envious like me and have to buy it from the market, make this dish today - I promise you won’t be disappointed.

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prep time 10 minutes

cook time 15 minutes

total time 25 minutes

servings 6

Ingredients

3 medium zucchini

1 cup uncooked orzo

2 tbsp parsley

1/2 cup cherry tomatoes halved

1/2 cup sliced almonds

1/4 cup feta

2 tbsp balsamic glaze

1/2 lemon

1 clove of garlic

salt + pepper

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)

Instructions

In a medium pot cook orzo according to package.

While the orzo is cooking slice your zucchini in half. Season with salt + pepper then grill - 3-4 minutes per side or until zucchini is fork tender. Arrange in a single layer on a serving platter.

Once the orzo is cooked, drain and place in a medium bowl. To the orzo add in finely chopped parsley, cherry tomatoes, almonds, crumbled feta, balsamic glaze, the juice of 1/2 lemon, minced garlic, salt + pepper and red pepper flakes. Stir until fully combined then spoon over the zucchini and serve immediately.

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Cauliflower Rice Tabbouleh Salad

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Tabbouleh Salad - while this is not exactly a classic version it is low carb, super delicious, and gives me major greek salad vibes.

Are you're like me your trying to savour every last minute of summer, I mean seriously, how is it already the end of August? It feels like it was only June about 2 weeks ago. So while I maybe haven’t accomplished all of my summer goals, I did accomplish 1 important one - to make a killer Tabbouleh salad!

So while traditional tabbouleh would have bulgur, I don’t know about you but I don’t usually have that lying around my kitchen. So that is where riced cauliflower came into play and seriously, it’s such a good substitution. While I, and the rest of the world, maybe having a major obsession with cauliflower rice right now I don’t think that it’s fad food that’s going to go away any time soon. I mean it’s healthy, carb-free, and can be added into so many things. Plus, if you mix it with your favourite carb (potatoes or rice) it can be completely masked and give you the extra health benefits without anyone even knowing it.

The other great thing about this salad is that the ingredients are all things that you are likely to have on hand. Tomatoes, cucumbers, feta - they are all staples, right?

So go ahead and make this tonight - you will be soooo glad you did!!!

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prep time 15 minutes

cook time 10 minutes

total time 25 minutes

servings 4

Ingredients

1 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes halved

1/2 long English cucumber finely chopped

1/2 red onion

3/4 cup sliced almonds

1 bag frozen cauliflower rice

1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley

1/4 cup finely chopped fresh mint

1/4 cup feta

juice of 1 lemon

1/4 cup olive oil + 1 tsp

salt + pepper

Instructions

In a large frying pan add in 1 tsp of olive oil and heat over medium heat. Add in sliced almonds and cook for 2-3 minutes or until lightly browned - stirring often. Add in frozen cauliflower and cook another 3 minutes or until cauliflower is warmed just cooked through. Set aside and allow to cool.

In a large bowl combine halved tomatoes, finely chopped cucumber, minced red onion, parsley, mint and crumbled feta. Add in cooled cauliflower and almonds and stir until fully combined.

In a small bowl squeeze the juice of a lemon and stir in olive oil. Pour over your salad and season to taste with salt + pepper then toss and serve.

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Mediterranean Pasta with Shrimp + Feta

Quick and Easy Pasta that is full of all the mediterranean flavours that we all love!

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So sometimes you just need dinner to be ready super quickly right! Now, while you can always open a jar of pasta sauce and toss it over some noodles why would you do that when you can make this Mediterranean Pasta in no time at all!

So here’s the thing - the most time-consuming part of this dish is waiting for things to marinade! So literally you can be sitting on the patio with a glass of wine while this is happening, or of course, running around like a crazy person getting all of the millions of things done that are always on that darn to-do list. But either way - when your ready to start cooking, this meal will be on your plate in less than 30 minutes - how great is that!

Now, this isn’t your traditional saucy pasta, but it does pack a lot of punch when it comes to flavour, so I promise you, you won’t miss the sauce one bit. Plus, it feels lighter and “healthier” which is what we're all looking for in the summer right?

The other thing to talk about - pasta water. Have you guys been keeping a cup of your starchy water to help bring your pasta sauce together? If you haven't, you are seriously missing out. It is the perfect way to add extra seasoning (because you're salting your water right) as well as to thicken it all up and brings it all together. Honestly, if you're not doing this start, I promise you will never go back!

So next time you're in a big hurry or you are just feeling like you need something super simple yet flavourful whip this up - it’s fancy enough to serve guests yet simple enough for any night of the week!

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prep time 20 minutes + 2 hours to marinade

cook time 20 minutes

total time 40 minutes + 2 hours to marinade

servings 4 - 6

Ingredients

1 lb shrimp - peeled + deveined with the tail off

4 cloves of garlic

1/2 cup white wine

1 lemon

1 - 8oz jar of sun-dried tomatoes

1 tsp oregano

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

1 lb cherry tomatoes

1/2 cup fresh parsley

4 oz feta

1/2 lb gigli pasta (or any pasta you like)

1/2 cup black olives

Olive oil

salt + pepper to taste

Instructions

In a ziplock bag place shrimp, thinly sliced garlic and white wine. Marinade for 1-2 hours in the refrigerator.

In a medium bowl combine sun-dried tomatoes that have been thinly sliced, the zest of the lemon, oregano, red pepper flakes and cherry tomatoes that have been halved or quarter depending on the size. Place in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook your pasta according to the package.

Place a small amount of olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Place each shrimp into the pan and cook on each side until they just turn pink. Once both sides are pink squeeze in the juice of the lemon, add in the wine marinade and simmer for 1-2 minutes - being sure not to overcook the shrimp. Remove the shrimp from the pan leaving the wine behind. Bring the wine back to a simmer and allow to reduce by half then set aside.

Once your pasta is cooked reserve 1 cup of the cooking water before draining the noddles. Place drained pasta back into the large pot then add in shrimp, sun-dried tomatoes, reduced wine, parsley, black olives and half of the reserved pasta water. Stir well then season with salt + pepper, adding remaining pasta water if needed. Top with crumbled feta and serve immediately.

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Loaded Greek Hummus

Hummus loaded with tomatoes, cucumber, olives and feta - the perfect combination for a delicious healthy snack!

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So it’s Friday and I don’t know about you but I love Friday nights that involve lots of snacks and a movie or two. That's where this extra yummy greek salad topped hummus comes in.

I mean seriously, who doesn’t love hummus? It's healthy, delicious, and easily pairs with so many different flavours. While it’s super easy to pick up tasty hummus from the grocery store it is also just as easy to make your own - all you need are a couple of cans of chickpeas, lemon, olive oil, garlic and cumin - most of which you probably already have in your pantry. Throw it all together in your food processor or blender and all of the work is done for you.

Now, while I did say you can just throw the chickpeas right into the food processor directly from the can I do recommend spending a few extra minutes and removing the skins. It makes for more of a smooth textured hummus which I think it totally worth it.

I also love cooking the garlic in the oil for a few minutes as well to not only flavour the oil but to also take away the raw garlic bite and mellow it out.

So the one piece of advice that I have for you on this beautiful sunny Friday - serve this for dinner tonight with some veggies and grilled pita - your family will thank you!

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prep time 30 minutes

blend time 5 minutes

total time 35 minutes

servings 4 - 6

Ingredients

2 cans of chickpeas (preferably low sodium)

1/4 tsp cumin

4 cloves of garlic

2 tbsp olive oil

1.5 tsp salt

2.5 tbsp lemon juice

1/4 cup water

1/3 cup cherry tomatoes halved or quartered

1/3 cup cucumbers finely diced

1 tbsp red onion finely diced

2 tbsp crumbled feta

3 tbsp sliced kalamata olives

Instructions

In a small saucepan place olive oil and whole garlic cloves and cook over medium heat for 3 minutes or until garlic is lightly browned.

Drain the cans of chickpeas into a colander and rinse then remove the skins by pinching between your thumb and index finger. Once all of the skins have been removed place the chickpeas in a food processor or blender along with cumin, salt, lemon juice, olive oil and garlic cloves. Blend on high for 3-4 minutes adding in water as needed until hummus is smooth then scoop your hummus into a bowl or onto a serving tray.

In a small bowl combine tomatoes, cucumber, red onion, feta and olives - stir to combine. Pour the vegetable mixture over the hummus and serve with vegetables and pita bread.

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Watermelon Salad with Cilantro + Feta

Nothing says summer more than watermelon - so make up this fresh watermelon salad for your next BBQ!

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Watermelon Watermelon……. It’s the perfect fresh summery treat that needs to be at every bbq. But I bet there are a few fun facts that you perhaps didn’t know about them.

  1. Watermelon is 92% water and some early explorers carried them rather than water to stay hydrated.

  2. Watermelon is classified as a fruit and a vegetable and is related to pumpkins and a cucumber.

  3. Traditional watermelon was sprinkled with salt because it brings out the sweetness and juiciness

  4. Japanese grow square watermelons because they don’t roll away and fit more easily in the refrigerator.

  5. The heaviest watermelon weighed in at a whopping 350.5 pounds.

  6. Every part of the watermelon is edible - even the rind.

  7. China is the worlds largest producer of watermelons.

  8. Watermelon is the state vegetable of Oklahoma.

So there you have it, when you whip up this salad you can also wow your friends and family with your watermelon knowledge! Plus since this salad has both a bit of salt and feta your watermelon will be extra sweet and juicy which is exactly how it should be enjoyed!

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prep time 15 minutes

total time 15 minutes

servings 4


Ingredients

4 cups of watermelon

2 cups celery

1/2 cup red onion

2 tbsp cilantro

2 tbsp lime juice

1 tbsp olive oil

salt + pepper to taste

1/3 cup feta cheese

Instructions

In a large bowl place watermelon that has been chopped into 1-inch pieces. To the watermelon add finely chopped celery, red onion, cilantro, lime juice, olive oil and salt + pepper and feta. Toss to combine then serve immediately or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

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