Lime-Cilantro Chicken over Cauliflower Couscous

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Philly is well known for its delicious foodtrucks. The city’s filled with them, and they provide wonderful alternatives to more expensive sit-down places. They’re also a great way not to get bored with your daily meals, as there are so many to choose from, all specializing in different types of food. On my campus specifically, there isn’t a single truck without a long line between 11:30-3. It always amazes me. Though the options are very varied, one of the most classic foodtruck “specialty”, or staple recipe, here is “grilled chicken over rice”. Continue reading “Lime-Cilantro Chicken over Cauliflower Couscous”

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My Shrimp Fried Rice

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When it comes to foreign gastronomy, I’m a big fan of Asian cuisine. Though Chinese isn’t my favorite, I never turn down Japanese, Thai or Vietnamese food. A couple of years ago, I took a trip to Cambodia and Vietnam with my family, and I arguably ate the best food ever for two whole weeks. I was basically in food heaven, as I love anything that has rice and/or noodles in it, which is the most common base to all of their dishes. Though I usually eat out when I crave Asian food, I sometimes make it at home if I have time. My go-to dish is Shrimp Fried Rice, or at least my own version of it (I don’t like cooked carrots…). It’s quick, easy, and a great way to use left-over rice. Bon appétit!

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Prep Time: 20 min

Ingredients:

  • 1/4-1/2 cup dried rice
  • 1/2 cup shrimp (I use frozen)
  • 1 egg (beaten)
  • a handful of edamame (cooked and shelled)
  • 1/4 yellow onion (chopped)
  • 1/2 tsp olive oil
  • soy sauce
  • sriracha
  • salt, pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. In a small pot, put salted water to a boil. Cook the rice for the time indicated on the packaging (mine takes about 15 minutes).
  2. Meanwhile, cook the shrimp and onions until tender, in a pan with olive oil and salt, on high heat. This should take about 3-5 minutes.
  3. When the rice is cooked, drain it and put it back in the pot. Add the beaten egg and stir in the rice until the egg is cooked (the less you stir, the chunkier the egg will be). Add a good splash of soy sauce and stir again.
  4. Next, add the cooked shrimp and onion, and the edamame beans. Cook for another 2 minutes, allowing all the flavors to blend together.
  5. To serve, scoop the fried rice in a bowl, adjust the seasoning, drizzle with sriracha and enjoy!

TIP: For a more traditional version, you can also use peas and carrots instead of edamame beans. 

Baked Eggplant stuffed with Couscous

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Lately, eggplant’s been at the top of my vegetables crush list. Seriously though. I don’t know why I love it so much, but I can eat it three times a day. Ok, maybe not for breakfast. But definitely for lunch and dinner. I use it in sauces, stews, dips or even just on its own, and I never get tired of it. This time though, I chose to stuff it with a delicious couscous mixture. It turned out to be an ideal dish for dinner. Stuffed vegetables appeal to me because they can be transformed in many ways. The combinations of grains, meat or stuffing with their tender roasted flesh always make for satisfying and diverse meals. Here, the paired eggplant and couscous offer you plenty of good nutrients in a tasty fashion. Bon appétit!

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Recipe inspired by Dishing up the Dirt


Prep time: 40 min 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 eggplant
  • 1/4 yellow onion (diced)
  • 1/3 cup couscous
  • 1/4 cup cherry tomatoes (chopped finely)
  • 1/4 cup zucchini (chopped very finely)
  • crumbled feta cheese (optional)
  • chopped parsley (optional)
  • olive oil

Spicy lemon-yogurt sauce:

  • 1 tbsp lemon juice and zest
  • 3 tbsp yogurt
  • 2 tbsp water
  • drizzle of sriracha
  • salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Scoop (and save) the seeds out of your eggplant half, leaving about a 1/2in border, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, and roast flesh-down for about 30 minutes.
  2. As the eggplant roasts, make the lemon-yogurt sauce by mixing the lemon juice and zest with yogurt, water, salt, pepper and a splash of sriracha.
  3. To cook the couscous, bring 1/3 cup water with 3/4 tbsp of butter to a boil. Cut the heat and add the dried couscous, stir well, and let it sit for about 5 minutes. Then fluff it up with a fork (timing instructions may vary depending on the type of grain).
  4. Meanwhile, sauté the onions with olive oil, on high heat, in a small pot for about 5 minutes. Add a splash of water and let it evaporate to further soften the onions. Add the chopped cherry tomatoes and diced zucchini, and cook for about 5 more minutes on medium heat.
  5. Once the couscous is ready, add it to the pot and stir well so that all the ingredients are well incorporated. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and crumbled feta and adjust the seasoning.
  6. Once the eggplant is fully roasted, scoop the couscous mixture in it. Drizzle with the spicy lemon-yogurt sauce and eat with a spoon!

TIP: you can substitute lentils or quinoa for the couscous if you don’t have any on hand.