Avocado Toast with Eggs and Tomatoes

Home from Cabo and happily back to life as Grand and GrandDad for the weekend. Tomorrow begins with a 5:50am wakeup call for Liam’s travel league baseball games, and then soccer matches for “the littles”. We will divide and conquer for the different locations; but we will all reunite in the Rock Dam Kitchen for a healthy brunch to refuel us all for the afternoon. Transfer the familiar into the fantastic. We’re taking all familiar ingredients and combining them in a wonderfully twisted way. So drop the mask for a few minutes to enjoy a meal…the stars are going to align on our taste buds and all the way down to our tummies! Here’s wishing all of you a happy, healthy, fun loving, athletic Saturday!

2 eggs
2 slices bread
1 Tbs Dijon mustard
1 avocado, gently mashed
1/2 lime, zested and juiced
Dash garlic powder
Dash onion powder
Fresh spinach
Gourmet Medley cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup Alfalfa sprouts
Drizzle of honey
Drizzle of olive oil

Place eggs in boiling water for 6 minutes to soft boil.
Lightly sauté tomato halves in olive oil.
Toast bread.
Spread with Dijon.
Mix avocado with lime, garlic, and onion.
Spread avocado mixture on top of Dijon.
Top with a few spinach leaves.
Top with sprouts.
Top with eggs.
Top with tomatoes.
Drizzle with honey and olive oil.
Salt and pepper to taste.

Chicken Caprese

The painting in the pic above is titled “Peg’s Produce” and is by the amazing Kristin Gibson, reflecting this wonderful season of the freshest fruits and vegetables here in Eastern North Carolina. So look forward (and backward) to lots of postings including strawberries, blueberries, tomatoes, corn, and so on… so here we are with luxury on a budget. This is the essential summer staple of caprese, with the added bonus of extra protein with a chicken breast. American Made! Yummy all the way down to the Tummy.

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts 
3 Tbs olive oil  
2 cloves garlic, grated
1/4 t salt
1/2 t ground black pepper 
12 cherry tomatoes
3 Tbs basil paste
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1 tomato, thinly sliced 
Torn fresh basil for garnish

Preheat oven to 400°.
Combine olive oil, garlic, salt, and pepper in small bowl.
Pour half on bottom of casserole dish.
Add chicken, and top with remaining oil mixture.
Place cherry tomatoes around chicken.
Bake 15 minutes.
Remove from oven.
Brush with 1Tbs basil paste.
Sprinkle on mozzarella.
Top with sliced tomatoes.
Top tomatoes with more basil paste.
Return to oven and bake another 15 minutes.
Remove and allow to rest 5 minutes.
Slice on the diagonal.
Top with fresh basil.
Serves 4 with a side of vegetable and starch.

Pistachio and Halloumi Crusted Chicken

Hello Dinner!

“We’re not losing a lifestyle;
We’re gaining a new place in which to live.”
I can’t find who wrote this, but it’s been in my quotation book for quite a while. But how relevant for our reentry in to the social world today, as we become vaccinated and begin to gather with a couple of pals now. Remain cautious, safe, and well my friends!

And remember, Friday brings Suzi, her amazing story, and her incredible Strawberry Bread!

2 boneless, skinless, chicken breasts
1/2 cup shelled pistachios, chopped
1/2 cup shredded Halloumi cheese
1/4 cup Panko
Zest of a lemon
2 Tbs olive oil, divided
1/2 t kosher salt
1/2 t ground black pepper
1 1/2 Tbs light mayonnaise
1 cup cherry tomatoes

Preheat oven to 400°.
Coat small cooking pan with nonstick spray.
Drizzle with 1 Tbs olive oil.
In small bowl, stir together pistachios, cheese, panko, and lemon zest.
Salt and pepper the under side of chicken breasts, and place that side down in baking pan.
Salt and pepper the top side.
Brush mayonnaise evenly all over the chicken breasts.
Sprinkle with the pistachio mixture, and press to adhere.
Drizzle oil over breasts.
Add tomatoes around edges of chicken breasts.
Bake 30 minutes until internal temperature is 165°.
Remove from oven and let rest 10 minutes before slicing.
Sprinkle with chopped parsley.
Serve with lemon slices on the side.
*This pistachio topping is also excellent on mahi or halibut.
Reduce cooking time to 8 to 12 minutes for fish.

Tomato Basil Chicken

Entree Chicken Tomato Basil Chicken I

©PEGhardee

Remember that Revealing Supper Party? Well that little royal girl was born this past Sunday morn, healthy, strong, and gorgeous Mackenzie. And with tomatoes still flying in each week from Leggett Farm Organics, and the fresh basil overtaking my garden, I made this delicious chicken entree for the new Mom and Dad Wednesday night. This one is a winner for certain!!

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 8 fillets
1 Tbs olive oil
1/8 t Kosher salt
1/4 t fresh ground black pepper
1/2 Tbs dried oregano
1 lb cherry tomatoes, halved
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbs light butter
1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped

Drizzle olive oil in skillet on medium high.
Season both sides of chicken with salt, pepper and oregano.
Place into pan and cook 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until almost cooked through.
Turn heat down to medium.
Add tomatoes and garlic.
Cook 4 minutes.
Add basil and butter, and stir until combined.
Turn heat off and let skillet stay on hot eye for 5 minutes.

Serves an army!