Roasted Pepper Salad with Castelvetrano Olives

roasted peppers

You’re in for a real treat when you make this smoky flamed roasted pepper salad. It tastes nothing like the peppers that you can buy in a jar, not in the least!

The salad is sweet as well as smoky with just a few ingredients such as garlic, olive oil and herbs, and it’s perfectly accompanied by buttery, mild and lightly brined Castelvetrano olives.   Aaah… Have you ever tried them? Even olive haters are won over by their incredible taste.

blistering peppers

To start out making this you have to prepare the peppers. The skin has to be removed by charring all the sides and it can be done a few different ways.

Blistering the skin takes a little time and you don’t want to hurry the process.

You can use a grill pan inside, a grill outside or you can even place them directly onto the burner of your gas stove while the flame is going.

broiler blistering peppers

Another way which is pretty easy, especially if you’re making quite a few is to stick them onto a foil lined baking sheet and place the pan right under the broiler. Any of the methods you chose you have to be watchful with constant turning making sure all sides of the peppers are blistering.

You’ll know when they’re done, they’ll feel tender to the touch with charring all around.

covered peppers

Then you’re going to place them into a bowl putting plastic wrap over the top so they can steam a bit while they’re still hot, maybe 15 minutes.

seeding peppers

When they cool down the outer skin will peel right off, if you need a little help grab hold with a paper towel. You’ll be left with the meat of the pepper.

Open up the pepper and scrape out the seeds, you might have a few lingering but that’s ok. Now all you have to do is cut them into slices.

peppers and olives

Now here’s the easy part. Grab a bowl, add the sliced peppers and start adding in the rest of your ingredients.

roasted pepper salad

For six peppers I added roughly a third cup of olive oil, 4 finely chopped garlic cloves, a good handful of chopped parsley, ( you could add basil too)  salt and pepper to taste and a generous amount of Castelvetrano olives. Some people add in capers, pine nuts, garbanzo beans.

I say add what you like but I’m more of a purist and want those olives to shine through all the way.

Keep in mind the flavor just enhances the more it sits and marinates all together. So as the saying goes, the more it sits the better it gets!

 

roasted pepper crostini

Grab a platter and serve up this beautiful, colorful pepper salad as a side to anything you put on the grill, or simply served as a crostini on some crusty bread.

Simplicity at it’s best!

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Memorial Day Weekend Grilling Ideas

veggie kabobs

It’s time to bust out your grills, Memorial Day weekend is around the corner and it’s the start of warm weather and enjoying the outside, and quite frankly I’m tired of comfort foods I’m ready for some serious grilling!

Honesty this post could go on for days because there are so many meals you can make on the grill. Pizza is always fun and so is paella and who doesn’t love a good old clambake on the grill!

Today I’m going to focus on a few of my good old standbys, ones that I make throughout the summer. Starting out with rainbow colored veggie kabobs.

Just skewer your favorite veggies together, I love adding chunks of portobello mushrooms on mine. I usually use wooden skewers that have been soaked in water for a couple of hours so as not to burn, if you have metal skewers, even better.

grilled kabob

I usually do a simple olive oil, salt and pepper that’s brushed all over mine I like the individual veggie flavors to really shine through. I have a basil infused olive oil that I sometimes drizzle over them at the end when plated, simple and delicious!

meat kabob

To go along with the veggie kabobs you might as well do some meat ones. I usually do sirloin steak and chicken breast sprinkled with dry herbs and olive oil of course. I have a Greek seasoning that I love to use but I’ve also done some wet marinades as well, like teriyaki.

That’s the fun part just make them the way you want.

grilled meat kabob

You really don’t use a lot of meat when making kabobs because there’s always some type of veggie stuck in between, so they’re very economical to make and great for a party. Yes, they’re a little time consuming to put together, but all that can be done a day ahead.

kabobs

They’re so pretty on a platter and everyone seems to love them, make a couple of sides and you’re good to go.

planked salmon

I love doing fish on the grill, in fact I prefer it. I often make a cedar planked piece of  gorgeous salmon. Again I’m mostly a dry rub girl, the one I used here had a mix of brown sugar, onion, garlic, paprika, cilantro, smoked salt, chipotle and some other spices, but again make it your own, just be sure to soak your planks for a couple of hours so they don’t burn up on the grill.

I’ve even done a whole sheet pan full of cod with tomatoes, olives, lemons, capers and other spices out on the grill which is super simple to do with amazing flavor.

grilled shrimp

Grilled shrimp always a favorite, for this I make a simple marinade of olive oil, fresh chopped garlic, lemon zest, salt, pepper and fresh chopped parsley. Large shrimp is best to use so that you can put them directly onto the grill grates to get all that good charred flavor.

grilled shrimp

Served with lemon slices these shrimp on the barbie always disappear!

grilled meats

Steaks, ribs, burgers and grilled chicken are all front runners in the grilling department.

sausage and peppers

In my family you can count on Italian sausage on the grill always making a reoccurring appearance, tossed with peppers of course.

grilled veggie tray

If you don’t want to skewer your veggies just grill up a whole bunch of your favorite and arrange them on a platter, a healthy and delicious side to any of your grilled meats or fish.

pasta salad

Throw in a good pasta salad or two, this one has a mix of artichoke hearts, garbanzo beans, olives, tomatoes, red peppers, cucumber, red onion, spinach and feta.

pasta caprese salad

Or do this simple caprese pasta salad. Chop up your tomatoes and let them sit with olive oil and garlic til the juices run out and mingle together, then toss into your cooked pasta and add fresh chopped mozzarella with fresh basil.

potato salad

If you prefer a potato salad, here’s one I posted made with fingerling potatoes and a honey, lemon and Dijon vinaigrette.

Most of us will be homebound this summer so we might as well make the best of it, enjoying our outdoor spaces, nice weather along with good food and drink!

Happy grilling!

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Chicken Parmigiana with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

chicken parmigiana

Chicken parmigiana is an intensely flavored dish of crispy, crunchy chicken topped with warm, oozing melted cheese and then garnished with the luscious flavor of roasted cherry tomatoes.

roasted cherry tomatoes

It all begins with a pan of roasted cherry tomatoes, I’m obsessed with roasting tomatoes, I’ve been doing it for years and you can’t beat the flavor.

I like to line my pan with foil so none of the juices dry up and burn, you want every single drop. I always add shaved garlic into the pan and toss in some fresh basil along with dousing the tomatoes with olive oil, salt and pepper.

You’ll want to roast the tomatoes until they burst open and release their juices so that they all mingle together with the garlic and basil flavors.

You can prepare the tomatoes early in the day,  just warm them up before using.

cooking cutlets

Then you want to cook up your chicken. Sometimes I can find thinly cut chicken cutlets but more often I just trim my own by slicing a breast longways into two or three pieces, then you’ll want to pound then flat for even cooking.

The chicken cutlets are dipped in egg first then into a mix of panko breadcrumbs, grated parmesan, granulated garlic, fresh snipped parsley and a touch of paprika.

chicken cutlets

Pan fried in olive oil will give you a nice crunchy crust. Be sure to place them on a rack to keep that crunch after frying, otherwise the bottom might get soggy and believe me you don’t want soggy chicken parmigiana!

parmigiana

Then plop a slab of fresh mozzarella on top, stick the cutlets under the broiler just until the cheese starts to melt. Pull the chicken cutlets out and top them with the warm roasted tomatoes, this is a heavenly combo!

Make this anytime of the week, prepare the tomatoes ahead, then everything else will take no time at all!

5.0 from 3 reviews
Chicken Parmigiana with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes
 
No exact measurements, it will depend on how many cutlets you have. Just mix up your breadcrumb mixture as you go. Start out with 2 eggs.
Author:
Ingredients
  • chicken cutlets, sliced thin and pounded flat
  • ROASTED TOMATOES
  • at least 2 pints of cherry tomatoes
  • 2 or 3 shaved garlic cloves
  • fresh torn basil
  • olive oil
  • BREADCRUMB MIXTURE
  • panko breadcrumbs
  • granulated garlic
  • fresh chopped parsley
  • a handful of grated parmesan
  • paprika
  • 2 eggs scrambled
  • slices of fresh mozzarella
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Prepare your tomatoes on a rimmed baking sheet lined with foil. throw on the tomatoes, shaved garlic, salt, pepper and torn basil, douse with a generous amount of olive oil.
  3. Roast tomatoes until they burst and juices mingle with the olive oil.
  4. Set up your breadcrumb mixture and scrambled eggs.
  5. Dip cutlets into egg first then into crumb mixture then directly into a pan with the bottom coated with olive oil.
  6. Cook cutlets on both sides til golden brown with no pink inside.
  7. Place cooked cutlets onto a rack to stay crispy.
  8. Place the cheese on top then under the broiler just until it melts slightly.
  9. Remove and place them on a platter and spoon the warm, garlicky roasted tomatoes on top.
  10. Garnish with more basil.
  11. Enjoy

 

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