The fresh taste of caprese in a juicy chicken burger with the cheesiest centre!
The fresh taste of caprese in a juicy chicken burger with the cheesiest centre!
* This post is sponsored by SummerFresh as part of the #FreshAPPYS campaign. My Kitchen Love has been compensated monetarily and with product, although all opinions remain my own.
If there’s one thing I love putting together when we have people over for a party it’s a charcuterie board. Putting personal touches on the board, offering bites for all taste preferences, and making it look beautiful takes a few small extra touches but goes a long way. Whether it’s my regular cookbook club or a one off dinner party, charcuterie boards are there to offer something to everyone. This holiday season I’m looking forward to sharing a fresh take on appetizers and a charcuterie board with homemade sumac pita chips.
SummerFresh offers fresh, real and simple ingredients and everyday gourmet products. I took 3 of the products from the SummerFresh line to complete my charcuterie board: Roasted Red Pepper Hummus, Bruschetta, and Spinach Dip. I went with fan favourites of hummus and spinach dip, but put a small personal touch on all 3 dips by grating some lemon zest on top. The garnish makes the dips pop and provides a unifying flavour to link the board together. SummerFresh makes holiday entertaining easy with healthy dips and tips in their Entertaining Guide.
I have 5 easy tips that I keep in mind for building a charcuterie board:
These pita chips are so crazy addictive I’m lucky there was any left to photograph! I love the hint of garlic and the lemony sumac spice. Sumac has a festive pop of red and is full of bright lemon flavour. It’s made from a berry that is dried and ground up to form a powdered spice.
Keep it simple, fresh and real this holiday season!
Yields 24-32 pita chips
Keep holiday entertaining simple, fresh, and real!
5 minPrep Time
10 minCook Time
15 minTotal Time
* Sumac is a Middle Eastern spice available at Middle Eastern grocers and can be found in the spice aisle at some major grocery stores.
Sometimes it’s the simplest things that taste the best – with minimal intervention. Take this simple bite size dish; Manchego Cheese, Serrano Ham, and Castelvetrano Olives as the simplest of recipes with 3 ingredients and ready in about 10 minutes. And what better time of year to let simple ingredients shine than over the holidays? Everyone has a hundred other tasks to complete around the holidays; why add another time-consuming one?
This recipe came up because my cousin asked me if I had recipe for polenta fries in my archives. I didn’t and since I’m a big polenta fan, I went about trying to find an easy and delicious way to make polenta fries. I was aiming for crispy exterior, soft polenta-like texture on the interior, and a great dipping sauce as a companion. My previous attempts in years past have gone terribly wrong from taking forever to make, to not obtaining the right texture. These Herb and Feta Polenta Fries are the perfect side dish for any supper, great for game day, and ideal for any potlucks.
So excited to share this savoury galette with you! You may be thinking that I’ve gone galette crazy, legitimate statement with the Blueberry Galettes showing up recently, but this recipe is way too good not to share. Ever wondered why there hasn’t been a single zucchini recipe on this blog? Zucchini and I have had a tainted past. Until recently I thought I didn’t like it. I’m sure it’s a product of never having it cooked properly, however I still missed out for years on a delicious and easy to cook summer vegetable. I’m sure this will come back later in life to haunt me (with 3 kids it actually kind of is). These days it’s all about zucchini love and since it’s a hit with most of the kids I regret not getting on board more quickly. Lattice patterned zucchini that tops a layer of whipped thyme cheese, held in place by a thyme pastry crust is kind of a dreamy thing, like this Zucchini and Thyme Galette. And dinner that the kids gobble down? I’ll milk it for everything it’s worth.
I’ve made countless savoury galettes and I’ve always had a fear of sharing them with you. Why? I’ve never felt like I landed the photos enough to everyone else excited about going through the process of making pastry dough for the crust. This pastry crust however is the bomb and should be used on repeat for the summer. Living like me last year and not into zucchini and you would rather eat butternut squash or asparagus on top? Have at it. The thyme in the crust adds a really great dimension and some extra pow to supper.
I served this with a light salad made of spicy greens and strong mustard vinaigrette, which you can find here if you’re into eating salad daily like I am 🙂 Savoury galettes are a great way to wrap dinner into one dish so sometimes putting in a bit more effort for the star makes it all worth it. I served it at room temperature as well. I make most of our suppers ahead of time and left it on counter to cool for about an hour before we ate it. No complaints and I taste tasted a piece right after the photos and can attest that the galette is as delicious while warm.
Fresh and light Zucchini Thyme Galette.A layer of thinly sliced zucchini, creamy cheese, and a herbed thyme crust.
25 minPrep Time
45 minCook Time
1 hr, 10 Total Time
This Melon, Fig, and Prosciutto Salad is a fresh Italian salad to brighten your summer patio fare.
This pizza though … it’s been in my heart of hearts for a while now (as pizza does, right?). Without the usual tomato sauce the other flavours shine through like crazy. I cannot get enough of the thinly sliced garlic, zucchini, and thyme paired with the cheeses. I don’t often crave pizza (I know I’m a weirdo, let’s leave it there for now), but when I do it’s been this Bianca Pizza for some time now. I’m hoarding the leftovers so I can top it with an egg tomorrow for breakfast and I know it’s going to be the most glorious thing I eat all day.
Burrata and puff pastry; two of my favourite ingredients collide for one amazing tart recipe. Burrata Tarts are crazy scrumptious and I’ve paired the burrata with four different complimentary flavours to highlight this gooey and creamy cheese. Burrata is a soft fresh mozzarella which has a firm exterior with cream and mozzarella on the interior. The contrasting textures highlights the interior’s soft and creamy texture that’s unbeatable. If burrata’s not in the budget or unavailable then fresh mozzarella torn into pieces also works well. Burrata is creamier than fresh mozzarella and goes astounding well with a lot of produce.
Bulgogi? Check! Kim-chi guacamole? Check! Gochujang sour cream? Check! If these three items don’t have you running to the kitchen to make fully Loaded Korean Nachos would the gooey mozzarella cheese convince you? I’m of the opinion that any excuse to eat guacamole is a good one. I’m not quite sure how it happened, but I went from zero nacho recipes to having two very different nacho recipes in the past couple of months. If you missed it, I made Loaded Greek Pita Nachos and stated that I have full “Nacho Fever” … I was serious. The recipe for the Greek Nachos can be found here. The resurfacing of Nacho Fever is due to another Canadian Food Bloggers Collaboration that I’m pumped about. Everyone took the idea of nachos and made it to fit their own style. Life is pretty great when you have a group of food bloggers trashing up nachos. It’s silly, but I’m pretty excited to see what everyone came up with and read their stories behind it. From savoury to sweet we have all your nacho needs covered!
For these nachos I used cheese a bit more sparingly than I would for regular nachos. I made this decision as I really wanted the Korean flavours to pop through without having cheese blanket them. If you’re all about the cheese, tack more on! I used Mozzarella cheese; if you prefer or only have cheddar cheese that to will work. I was trying for a more mellow cheese flavour. I really like the way the colours popped on the nachos with the purple cabbage, red peppers, and cilantro. As you can see, I used red tortilla chips, however, any old tortilla chip or even pita will work.
My favourite part of this recipe is the kim-chi guacamole. The kim-chi combined with the avocado makes for a truly fresh flavoured the change in texture is scrumptious. The gochujang sour cream is spicy, consider this your head’s up. I don’t have the highest tolerance for spicy foods, but I love gochujang so much that I knew I had to incorporate somehow.
The recipe calls for the steak to be very thinly sliced. I’ve found the easiest way to do this is by freezing the meat for 20 minutes or so before cutting. You don’t want it rock hard, but having it more firm will allow your (very sharp) knife to cut through the meat more easily.
Fully Loaded Korean Nachos with Bulgogi, Kim-Chi Guacamole, and Gochujang Sour Cream.
4 hrPrep Time
15 minCook Time
4 hr, 15 Total Time
Vegetables! I promised didn’t I? I’m a weirdo who loves veggies and salad to pieces; it’s my jam along with ice cream. Balance, right? This “salad” knows no bounds. It’s got seasonally delicious crisp green beans, some grilled halloumi, and roasted lemons and shallots. I topped it with lemony za’tar breadcrumbs for some extra zing to send your taste buds into salad heaven. It’s also basically a meal. It’s heavier so more of a main component of your meal versus a side salad situation.
Za’tar is a middle Eastern spice that can be found in most supermarkets now. I really enjoy adding it to various dishes, including pork chops, yogurt for pita, etc. It brings a great new element to the dish without overpowering all the original flavours.
3 tsp olive oil
1 lbs green beans, trimmed
1 pkg Halloumi cheese, cut into 1/4″ thick slices (give or take)
2 shallots, peeled and quartered
1.5 lemons, 1 lemon cut into 8 wedges (I left the skins on as they get palatable by roasting them)
1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
2 tsp za’tar spice mix
Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a small baking tray with aluminum foil and bake lemon wedges and shallot quarters for 15-20 minutes. Until charred in spots and well caramelized. Remove from oven and set aside.
Heat olive oil over medium-high heat and place Halloumi in pan gently. Fry until golden brown, flipping once, about 5-8 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.
Leaving pan at medium-high heat, add green beans and sauté for 5-7 minutes until desired tenderness is reached (we like ours crunchy so closer to the 5 minute mark). Remove from pan and set aside.
In the same pan add break crumbs and za’tar. Cook, stirring and watching closely until breadcrumbs have browned, about 3-5 minutes.
Assemble on a dish by layering cheese, beans, shallots, roasted lemons, and breadcrumbs. Squeeze remaining /12 lemon over top.
*note that I did not use salt or pepper in this recipe. Halloumi is quite salty on it’s own from my taste perspective. If you feel the need, season away.