Chickpea Wraps with Mint Yogurt

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Chickpea Wraps with Mint Yogurt (and spinach, apples, and beets)

The real title of this recipe is Black Chickpea Wraps with Tarragon Yogurt, but we couldn’t find black chickpeas and our grocery store was sold out of tarragon! But she mentioned in the recipe that you can use any herbs and regular chickpeas. These wraps were really fresh and delicious with chickpeas, spinach, apples, beets, and mint yoghurt (with garlic and lemon). Koen found them a little less delicious because he thinks beets taste like dirt and enjoyed his last 2 wraps better without beets and with extra spinach.

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Penne all’Arrabbiata

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Penne all’Arrabbiata

For my next Italian dish, I chose Penne all’Arrabbiata, “arrabbiata” translating into “angry” in English because it’s so spicy!  Arrabbiata sauce can be served with any type of pasta, but it traditionally paired with penne. I doubled the red pepper and the basil and it was delicious!

Grilled Steak with Green Beans, Tomatoes, and Chimichurri Sauce

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Grilled Steak with Green Beans, Tomatoes, and Chimichurri Sauce (and french fries)

On Saturday nights, Koen and I typically eat steak, so I was excited to find a new recipe that we could incorporate into our tradition – Grilled Steak with Green Beans, Tomatoes, and Chimichurri Sauce from the Food Network. Chimichurri sauce is an Argentinian grill sauce made from olive oil, garlic, and fresh herbs. The combination of the steak (which Koen grilled), sauce, and vegetables was really light and refreshing – I’ll definitely be making this sauce again for other grilled meats. I varied a little from the recipe by baking the green beans and tomatoes in the oven rather than cooking them on a grill (I don’t have one!).

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Chicken Spanaki

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Chicken Spanaki (with Greek salad and oven baked pita with tzatziki)

Although I want to try out more Italian recipes, it’s a bit too much to do it all in one week. So last night I searched the Food Network for Greek recipes and found Chicken Breast Spanaki. I’m not entirely convinced this is a real Greek dish (it translates as Spinach Chicken), but these spinach, feta and egg stuffed chicken breasts sounded delicious! As sides, I made a simple Greek salad of lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and kalamata olives (with a red wine vinaigrette) and baked pita bread in the oven to serve with tzatziki sauce, which I made with the leftover dill from the chicken, lowfat yoghurt, and garlic. Yum!

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Spaghetti alla puttanesca

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Spaghetti alla puttanesca

Koen and I are almost finished with The Sopranos (we’re on Season 6!) and one constant throughout the series is all of the Italian food I didn’t realize exists! It doesn’t matter if we’re watching scenes in Artie’s restaurant or the homecooking by Carmella, everything looks so delicious! Growing up I ate Americanized Italian food, meaning my mom’s spaghetti and lasagne, maybe some manicotti and cannelloni, but never anything really authentic. I did a google search for Italian sauces and pastas and am now really inspired – you’ll notice a theme during the coming weeks with my new recipes.

My first of the new Italian recipes is Spaghetti alla puttanesca, or literally Whore’s Spaghetti. How could I pass up on making a dish with such a funny name? For this dinner I used Nigella Lawson’s recipe for Slut’s Spaghetti. As Nigella explains, “The general consensus seems to be that this is the sort of dish cooked by slatterns who don’t go to market to get their ingredients fresh, but are happy to use stuff out of jars and tins.” The result is a deliciously salty pasta sauce thanks to the anchovies, olives, and capers.

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Coconut Macaroons

As I have mentioned in previous posts, my sister-in-law Sofie cannot consume lactose and gluten. So this week while Koen and I were in Roosendaal, I searched the internet to find a gluten- and lactose-free dessert that I could make for the family. I thought it would be a lot harder, but there are so many websites dedicated to a gluten and lactose free lifestyle. In the end I decided on Coconut Macaroons from Elana’s Pantry. In addition to containing no gluten and lactose, there is also no sugar. I wasn’t able to find agave nectar, so I substituted it with honey (although maybe if you use honey you should add a bit more because I looked it up afterwards and agave nectar is sweeter). Delicious and healthy!

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Coconut Macaroons, Before and After

 

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