Fresh, Light, Greek

I have been feeling under the weather the past few days and mostly lying in bed hoping for an end to the throbbing pain in my head. Finally by yesterday the headaches had gone and I was feeling more like myself. Although I certainly ventured out of my bedroom to rummage through the refrigerator for food, it was not necessary the best meals, I really did not want to think about preparing anything extravagant. However, I finally felt that yesterday would be good as any other to make something from scratch.

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All I knew for sure was I wanted something fresh, loaded with vegetables and no meat. Eventually I decided to used some of the red lentils I had stored in the cupboards, and though I would make some sort of dal or Indian dish. I finally settle on making kofta, a type of meatball, and still was settled on making something Indian.

I don’t know why or how, but suddenly pita bread and Greek salad came into my head and I though why not make that instead. I have never attempted to make my own pita bread, but with a few recipes in hand I was sure I could do it on my own. Once I had the basics down I was easily prepared to make them, and now laugh at my trepidation that I would ruin dinner.
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I also made some vegan tzatziki to go with the pita and kofta, which turned out nicely. It doesn’t have the same punch or sourness that authentic tzatziki has but it was delicious.

I definitely chose the right meal to eat after being ill. It hit the spot perfectly. Pita pockets are the perfect spring/summer time food but also perfect for a pick me up meal.

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Gluten Free Pita Bread
Makes: 8-10 smalls Cook time: 10-15 minutes Total time: 45 minutes

Ingredients

3 Cups Gluten Free flour blend ( I use Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1)

1 1/4 Cup warm water

1 Tbsp fast active yeast

1 Tsp salt

1 Tbsp honey or other sweetener

3 Tbsp vegetable oil

1/4-1/2 Cup additional warm water
Directions

1. Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Place a ventilated pan into oven.

2. Combine 1 1/4 cup warm water with yeast, honey, and vegetable oil. Mix to incorporate then let sit at least 5 minutes to proof.

3. Combine flour and salt in large mixing bowl or bowl of stand mixer.

4. Pour liquids into the flour and mix to combine on a low-speed. Dough should be sticky but still in ball form. This is where you may need some extra water.

5. Turn onto floured surface and divide into 8-10 balls.

6. Roll and flatten each ball. Lay prepared pitas on a parchment lined tray that is somewhere warm, such as the stove top. Once all dough is turn out, cover flattened rounds with bowl and let proof for 30-45 minutes.

7. Grab a paper bag or bamboo steamer and place next to oven.

8. Once dough has risen, spritz each round with some water then carefully place on the pan that is in the oven. Bake for 4-6 minutes, or until they look puffy.

9. Remove baked pitas and immediately place in paper bag or steamer. Steam them for 5-8 minutes. Continue this process until all are done.

10. Slice in half, you may need to slice into them if they did not puff all the way and enjoy as you wish.

11. To store, keep in a sealed container or bag for a few mayor freeze for a month.
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Red Lentil Kofta
Makes 12 Cook time: 10-15 minutes Total time: 30 minutes (plus 2 hours)

Ingredients

1 Cup Red Lentils, soaked 2 hours

1/2 Red onion, chopped

2 Cloves garlic, chopped

2 Tbsp fresh parsley, coarsely chopped

2 Tsp fresh or dried oregano

1 Tbsp tomato paste

1 Tsp salt

Pinch of pepper

4 Tbsp oil, coconut or olive oil

 

Directions

1. Soak the red lentils for at least two hours in plenty of cold water, covered (the dried lentils will swell).

2. Drain and rinse the lentils and place in a food processor or blender.

3. Add all ingredients except for oil.

4. Blend until the ingredients are well combined and the mixture holds together.

5. Heat coconut or olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat.

6. Form 12 golf ball-size balls and flatten slightly with the palm of your hand.

7. Cook the koftas for 4 minutes on each side.

8. Repeat the process until all are cooked.

9. (optional) Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Places kofta in oven for 10 minutes, or until crispy.

10. Will keep in refrigerator for a week.

 

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Vegan Tzatziki
Makes: 1 Cup Total time: 15 minutes

Ingredients

1 Cup raw cashews, soaked for at least 2-4 hours (or overnight)

1/2 Cup water

2 Tbsp fresh or dried dill plus some for garnish

1 Tbsp mint

1 Tbsp olive oil

2 Tbsp lemon juice

3 garlic cloves

1 Cup cucumber, peeled and chopped finely (reserve 1 Tbsp to mix in)

Pinch of Salt and Pepper

 

Directions

1.Place cashews, water, dill, mint, oil, lemon, cucumber and garlic into the bowl of a food processor or high-speed blender.

2. Process until completely smooth, about 2 to 3 minutes.

3. Pour mixture into bowl and stir in the 1 Tbsp cucumber.

4. Set aside to chill in the fridge, covered, at least 1 hour.

5. Garnish and serve.

Enjoy!

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