Roasted Red Pepper Yogurt sauce

I often wants a bit of a sauce or “dip” to go with grilled chicken. This week I saw a recipe that marinated chicken pieces in a yogurt mixture before grilling them. I decided to use the yogurt as the base for a dip instead. This one came out a fantastic shade of pink.

Roasted Red Pepper Yogurt sauce
Servings: 2 cups
Total time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz. roasted red peppers, cut into 1″ pieces
  • 1 tsp. turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp. Za’atar
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 cup full fat Greek yogurt

Directions:

  1. Process the peppers for 30 seconds in a food processor. Transfer to a sieve and allow to drain for 8-10 minutes.
  2. Return the drain peppers to the food processor and add the remaining ingredients. Process for another 30 seconds until well combined.
  3. Taste for flavor and adjust salt if needed.

Notes:
I used jarred roasted peppers in the original recipe however DIY roasted red peppers are pretty easy if you have the peppers on hand.

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Spinach and Zucchini Curry

[Spinach and Zucchini Curry]Monday night found me with no dinner plan. There were a couple of aging zucchini in the fridge, still firm but starting to blemish and a purple bell pepper, all from the farm stand near work. I found a package of frozen spinach in the freezer and a vague plan started to form. The result was a curry-like dish.

Spinach and Zucchini Curry
Servings: 4-6
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 35 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 10 oz. pkg. frozen chopped spinach, mostly thawed (see first direction)
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 2 medium zucchini, quartered and cut into 1/2″ pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped, or pressed through a garlic press
  • 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 1 Tbsp. sweet curry powder
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup water
  • kosher salt and black pepper

Directions:

  1. Remove the brick of spinach from the package, place it on a cutting board and cut it into about 20 cubes. This is easiest if spinach is mostly thawed. Transfer cubed spinach to a clean dish towel, twist towel into a ball and squeeze out as much liquid as possible. Set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add the onions and bell pepper, sprinkle with salt and toss to coat with oil. Cook, tossing occasionally, until the onions and peppers have softened, about 5 minutes. Transfer cooked onions/peppers to a bowl, retaining as much oil in the skillet as possible, and set aside.
  3. Return skillet to medium heat. When oil is shimmering add the zucchini, sprinkle with salt and cook, undisturbed, for 2 minutes. Shake the pan to redistribute zucchini and cook, undisturbed for another 2 minutes. Transfer zucchini to the bowl with the onions and peppers, again retaining as much oil as possible.
  4. Once again return the skill to medium heat. Add the spinach. Cook, stirring occasionally, until most of the moisture has been released, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and stir until aromatic, probably no more than 30 seconds.
  5. Return the onions, peppers and zucchini to the pan and add the curry and paprika. Stir until spices are distributed throughout the skillet then add the tomatoes, yogurt and water. Stir until the yogurt is fully dispersed into the vegetables, creating a sauce. Cook for 5 minutes. Taste for salt and pepper; adjust as desired.

Notes:
I nuked the frozen slam of spinach for a minute on full power to knock it from brick to mostly thawed. Your mileage, and microwave, may very.

You may wish to remove the seeds from the zucchini. I do this after quartering by just running the knife along where the seeds meet solid zucchini. Seeds aren’t really a problem on smallish zucchini. When the zucchini get to the large size the seeds can turn to mush in your dish.

We served this with white rice.

Spinach Artichoke Dip Chicken

I came across a similar recipe while trying to figure out what to make for our regular Saturday night dinner. There are dozens of versions of this dish online. I think the first one I came across was by Robyn Stone at Add A Pinch.

Here’s my version of the recipe.

Spinach Artichoke Dip Chicken
Servings: 8-10
Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 65 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 8 boneless, skinless, chicken breasts
  • kosher salt and cracked black pepper
  • cooking spray
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 14 oz. can artichoke hearts, drained
  • 1 16 oz. pkg. frozen spinach, thawed and drained
  • 1 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup low-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions:

  1. Position rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. Trim chicken breasts of excess fat and connective tissue. Sprinkle both sides with kosher salt and cracked black pepper.
  3. Spray a 13″x9″ baking dish with cooking spray. Arrange chicken breasts, “skin” side up, in the pan, tucking a bit of the tip under the breast to prevent over cooking. Bake for 20 minutes.
  4. Heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallot and sprinkle with a pinch of kosher salt. Saute the shallot for 3-5 minutes until softened. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  5. Quarter the artichoke hearts and cut into 1/4″ pieces. Place in a clean dish towel, gather the corners together and twist to remove excess liquid. Place in a bowl.
  6. Squeeze the excess liquid from the spinach using the same dish towel. The drier the spinach and artichoke hearts the thicker the sauce will remain. Break apart the ball of spinach into the bowl.
  7. Add the cooled shallots, garlic, yogurt, mayo and cheeses to the bowl. Mix well to combine. Taste for flavor and add salt and/or pepper to taste.
  8. When the chicken has baked for 20 minutes remove the pan from the oven and top the chicken with the spinach-artichoke dip. Spread the dip evenly over the chicken.
  9. Return the chicken to the oven and bake for another 20-25 minutes. The chicken should be cooked to 165°F. If not return it to the oven for another 5 minutes.
  10. Allow the chicken to rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Notes: