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Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Honeydew Cucumber Soup

Soup’s Chillin’!
Let's DishHoney Dew Melon And Cucumber Soup

Honey Dew Melon And Cucumber Soup (2)

I love all the little toppings that go on top of a delicious soup as a garnish.  I also like to use certain garnishes to let you know what’s in a particular soup. Today I’m making a cold  Honeydew Cucumber Soup With Fresh Mint. I am displaying a variety of garnishes just to give you some ideas of what would really be delicious and pair well with this soup. You could use all or any combination of these toppings you like.

I think cold soups are underrated and not used nearly enough. They are really refreshing, and super healthy too!  You can use this as an appetizer, served in shot glasses, or as a first course.

I’m going to be using fresh mint from my garden for this recipe today.

 

First, I want to set aside the ingredients that will give my soup lots of texture, and also can be used as toppings or garnish.   Using my food Mandolin that you see in the picture above will make the perfect tool for thinly sliced cucumbers. I have some other goodies up my sleeve too!

 

To contrast the sweetness of the soup, I’ve crisped up some Pancetta. Pancetta is Italian bacon. It’s cured but not smoked and filled with peppercorns, and sometimes pistachios, delicious!

 

 

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Inactive Prep Time: chill for 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Equipment: Blender or food processor, food mandolin, Melon Baller
Yields: 4 servings

Ingredients:
1 to 2 melons (not over ripe) yielding 8 cups of  large dice honeydew melon, 1 heaping cup of melon balls for garnish
1 English (hothouse) cucumber peeled and diced, 1/2 cup small dice, reserved for garnish, 12 very thin slices ( using food Mandolin) of cucumber reserved for garnish
1/4 cup of fresh mint leaves plus 4 small sprigs for garnish
12 slices of crisped Pancetta
4 tablespoons of Greek yogurt (keep refrigerated until ready to serve)
1/2 cup of pistachios
2 tablespoons of Agave nectar
1/4 cup of water
1 lime juiced
1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon Kosher salt

Directions: First, is to get the ingredients you’ll be using for the garnish and toppings prepared. The pistachios,  small diced cucumber, melon balls, and crisped Pancetta.

Directions For Pancetta:
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Place the pancetta slices, evenly spread out, on a baking sheet, lined with parchment paper. Bake for 8-10 minutes and let cool. Set on a plate lined with paper towel, set aside.

If needed, do this step in batches. In a food processor, add mint, lime juice, diced melon, diced cucumber, Agave nectar, water, cayenne pepper, Kosher salt. Pulse all the ingredients together, until a smooth consistency. Refrigerate for a few hours.

To serve,  divide equally among 4 bowls. To each of the bowls, I like to add 1 tablespoon of Greek yogurt, small diced cucumber, and melon balls.  Finally, garnish with cucumber slices and a sprig of mint.  Crispy pancetta and pistachios are optional. They will give that sweet and salty flavor combination, delicious!!!

 

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Spicy Grilled Chicken Over Pesto Bow Tie Pasta

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I love using a pesto as a sauce for pasta. Pesto doesn’t over power any dish but it’s a freat condiment for pasta and adds so much flavor. I’m going to top the pasta with a spicy grilled chicken breast. The chicken is marinated in a the Greek yogurt flavored with blackened seasoning.

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Above is a picture of a similar pesto I’d made earlier. It’s my sweet pea and mint pesto. The same process is followed to make this version.
Ingredients:
1-15 ounce package of thawed frozen peas
1/2 cup mint leaves
1 garlic clove, roughly chopped
juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
1/2 cup grated Pecorino cheese
1/3 cup E.V.O.O. ( may vary slightly)
Directions For Pesto Below:

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Yields: 4 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Inactive Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Equipment: indoor grill, food processor

Ingredients For Pesto:
1 can Cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 small jar roasted red peppers, drained
1 1/2 cups arugula leaves
1/3 cup toasted pine nuts
1 clove of garlic, roughly chopped
1 lemon juiced
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
1/3 cup E.V.O.O. may vary slightly
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1 box of cooked bow tie pasta, well drained

Ingredients For Spicy Grilled Chicken:
2 skinless-boneless chicken breast, butterflied then sliced into 2 breasts each, yielding 4 thin chicken breasts.
2 cups Greek Yogurt
2 1/2 tablespoons blackened seasoning
1 clove garlic grated
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 tablespoon Agave nectar
Parmigiano-Reggiano shaving for garnish

Directions For Toasted Pine Nuts:
In a large dry sauté pan, on medium heat. add the pine nut. Toast until the nuts become fragrant. Remove from heat.

Directions For Pesto:
In a food processor, add the Cannellini beans, roasted red peppers, lemon juice, garlic, Kosher salt, black pepper, arugula. Drizzle in the E.V.O.O.through the feed tube around 6-8 times. Remove the lid, add the grated cheese, pulse a few more time until cheese is combined. Add more E.V.O.O. if needed. The finished pesto should have a smooth consistency. Transfer to a bowl. Cook the bow tie pasta according to the box instructions. Drain well. Toss the pesto with the hot pasta and set aside.

Directions For Spicy Grilled Chicken:
In a large bowl, add Greek Yogurt, Agave nectar, blackened seasoning, Kosher salt, and grated garlic, mix well. Add the 4 thin chicken breasts. Make sure all the chicken is coated well with the seasoned yogurt. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and transfer the refrigerator for 1 hour.

Preheat indoor grill pan on med-high heat. Have the oven set on 250 degrees F. Place the chicken breast on grill pan. Grill the first side for 3-4 minutes, flip the chicken and grill for another 3 minutes. Transfer the grilled chicken to a sheet pan and place in the oven to stay warm. Cook pasta, drain well. Transfer the pasta to a large mixing bowl, add the prepared pesto and toss.

Remove the chicken from the oven. On a cutting board for meat, slice chicken on the bias. Add the pasta to a large serving bowl, top with sliced grilled blackened chicken. Garnish with shavings of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.

Serve hot.
 

 

 

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Grilled Red Curry Chicken Over Couscous With Cranberries And Golden Raisins

Grilled Red Curry Chicken

My Grilled Red Curry Chicken Over Couscous With Cranberries And Golden Raisins is a balance of spicy and sweet flavors, paired perfectly, to take you on an amazing food journey.

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Chicken Broth

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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Inactive Prep Time: 6 hours
Cook Time: 17 minutes
Total Time: 6 hours 32 minutes
Yields: 8 servings
Equipment: 3-quart saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, 1-gallon resealable plastic baggie, indoor grill pan, 1 small bowl, large mixing bowl

Ingredients:
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, butterflied (yielding 8 cutlets)
1 1/2 tablespoons of cumin seeds, ground
3 cloves of garlic, ground
1 tablespoon of grapeseed oil
3 cups of full-fat Greek yogurt, plain
3 tablespoons of red curry paste
1 tablespoon of light brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons of Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon of fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
1 teaspoon of fresh cilantro leaves, finely chopped, plus extra for garnishing Couscous
1 teaspoon of ground cumin
3/4 cup of Couscous
1 1/2 cups of unsalted chicken broth
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup of golden raisins

Directions:
Start by *butterflying four chicken breasts yielding a total of 8 chicken breasts.  In a mini food processor, add cumin seeds, garlic cloves, and grapeseed oil. Pulse until they form a chunky like paste. Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Next, add 2 cups of plain Greek yogurt, red curry paste, light brown sugar, and Kosher salt, mix to combine.

Place the 8 butterflied chicken breasts into a large plastic resealable bag. Using a rubber spatula, add the yogurt marinade to the chicken. Release the air, seal the baggie, and transfer the chicken to the frig for 6 hours. The yogurt works as a great tenderizer for the chicken.

Preheat oven to 250-degree F.
Preheat an indoor grill pan over medium-high heat. Using a pair of tongs, grab each marinated chicken breast, allowing excess marinade to drip off, place them onto the grill pan. Grill for 3 to 4 minutes on the first side and around 2 to 3 minutes on the other side. When all 8 chicken breasts are finished grilling, transfer them to a baking sheet pan cover with foil, transfer to the oven to keep warm.

To make the quick dipping sauce for the chicken, add 1 cup of Greek yogurt, ground cumin, 1/2 teaspoon of Kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper, chopped mint, and cilantro to a small mixing bowl. Stir to combine, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.

For the Couscous, add unsalted chicken broth, olive oil, cranberries, and golden raisins up to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low allowing the fruit to steep for 2 minutes. Next, add the Couscous. Remove from the heat and cover. Let stand for around 10 minutes or until the liquid is fully absorbed. Fluff with a fork. Garnish with fresh cilantro leaves.

To serve, add a good helping of Couscous to a serving plate. Slice the grilled chicken on the bias and arrange over the Couscous. Serve with a dollop of the yogurt dipping sauce. This is my Grilled Red Curry Chicken Over Couscous With Cranberries And Golden Raisins.

*Butterfly (a piece of meat or fish) almost in two and spread it out flat.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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