Roasted Broccoli Soup with Spiced Pepitas

It's that time of year in the San Francisco Bay Area where the Spring weather is done flirting with its warmth to remind us that we're still a couple months away from the middle of summer! 

When it's overcast, windy, and even a little nippy (okay really only at 5am in the morning), I don't want to do almost anything. But cooking soup is always something that I can motivate myself to do.

Because I wasn't motivated enough to come up with my own recipe (inspiring sunshine, where are you?), I decided not to reinvent the wheel and share with you a delicious roasted broccoli soup from Serious Eat' recipe arsenal. It's comforting, warm, and has all of those comforting roasted flavors that you need to keep you going on a gloomy day!

Roasted Broccoli Soup with Spiced Pepitas

Adapted from Serious Eats

Time: 1 Hour
Serves 6-8

2 lbs broccoli, stalk trimmed and heads cut into florets
10 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp ground coriander seeds, divided
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1.5 cups buttermilk
1 1/2 quarts homemade or store-bought low-sodium chicken stock or vegetable stock
Kosher salt
1 cup roasted pumpkin seeds
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground mustard seed
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
Zest of 1 lemon

Preheat oven to 375°F. Toss broccoli with 2 tbsp olive oil and spread in an even layer on 2 rimmed baking sheets. Transfer to oven and roast until broccoli is tender and browned, about 25 minutes.

In a Dutch oven, heat 2 tbsp olive oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring, until softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon coriander seed and red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Add roasted broccoli, buttermilk, and just enough stock to barely cover vegetables. Bring to a simmer, then remove from heat. Working in batches if necessary, transfer vegetables and liquid to a blender. Starting on the lowest speed and gradually increasing to the highest speed, blend broccoli until a smooth puree forms. Drizzle in 4 tbsp total olive oil while blender is running and return to a clean pot. Add as much of the remaining vegetable stock as necessary to thin to a creamy soup consistency. Season to taste with salt.

Meanwhile, lower oven to 350°F. In a mixing bowl, toss pepitas with 2 tablespoons olive oil, remaining 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander, cumin, mustard seed, and turmeric. Season with salt. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet and roast until fragrant, about 10 minutes. Let cool.

Scrape toasted spiced pepitas into a mixing bowl and stir in parsley, lemon zest, and remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil.

Warm the soup, then spoon it into bowls. Top with spiced pepitas and some of their oil. Serve immediately.



Kale Pasta with Kale Flowers in a Garlic-Infused Tomato Sauce

I’ve been meaning to make pasta with kale flowers for a while now, but I finally did it! 

Kale is by far the most successful plant in our garden. It’s literally towering over everything right now and is at least 6 feet tall. But this year, our lovely Portuguese kale went to flower a little sooner than usual. I think it’s because we had so much rain that made the kale so healthy and happy that it decided to send off its seeds to our garden. That’s totally fine with me!

So instead of just yanking out the plants, we’re used them in pasta. The end result? Nutritious and delicious! Like other edible flowers, I imagine these would be great in a salad, soup, or even as a cocktail garnish.

I initially intended to use the flowers when they were first produced because they look a lot like broccoli raab early on. As they mature, there’s less raab and more flower. You can use raab-like kale flowers in this recipe if you prefer and use less kale leaves or none at all. But I really enjoyed taking advantage of the beautiful yellow flowers because they added a really nice texture to the dish.

I couldn’t find the specific nutrition facts of kale flowers online, but many other edible flowers are high in vitamin C and vitamin A. Plus, it makes sense that at least some of the benefits of kale, like its antioxidant content, would transfer to the flowers as well, right?

Kale Pasta with Kale Flowers in a Garlic-Infused Tomato Sauce

Time: 25 Minutes
Serves 4

12 oz dried casarecce pasta
1 medium bunch kale, coarsely chopped
4 tbsp olive oil
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/3 cup garlic stuffed green olives, halved, garlic cloves chopped
1 (15 oz) can crushed tomatoes
4 anchovies, chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup packed kale flowers, stemmed
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
1/3 cup parmesan cheese

To Garnish
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
2 tbsp parsley, chopped
1/4 kale flowers

Bring a large pot of boiling salted water to a boil. Add pasta and boil for 5 minutes. Add kale and continue cooking until pasta is al dente, about 5 minutes longer. Drain pasta, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid.

In a medium skillet, add olive oil, fresh garlic, and cured garlic cloves over medium-high heat. Cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add tomatoes, green olives, and anchovies and season to taste with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, about 3-4 minutes. Add kale flowers and cook gently stirring for 1 minute. 

Return pasta to the pot over medium high heat and add the tomato sauce. Stir to combine and add parsley and parmesan cheese. Cook until flavors meld, about 3 minutes. Serve on plates and garnish with parmesan cheese, parsley, and kale flowers. 



Indian-Spiced Vegetable Soup

Happy Friday! Who else craves spicy Indian food at the end of a long week? If you do, you need to make this quick and spicy vegetable soup tonight! Full of vegetables, it’s insanely healthy. And while you wouldn’t notice, this one is vegan, which means it will serve as a nice break from animal products from the week, and it will lessen your footprint on the environment! A win-win for all.

In this soup, I used turnips, carrots, potatoes, and cauliflower as the main vegetables. But feel free to use some of your other favorites. I imagine that it would be great with green beans, peas, bell peppers, and zucchini as well. 

Adrian will often ask me jokingly when we make dinner with this much veg: “exactly how much nutrition do you think is in this?” and I just shake my head because it might as well be infinite! At 1/2 lb of vegetables per serving, I will happily trade this soup for a quarter pounder hamburger any day! It’s just too good and healthy to pass up!

Note: For a soupy consistency, I recommend using 4 cups of water. But for more of a masala consistency, which is how I like mine, just barely cover the vegetables with water, and cook the soup a little longer until it thickens up.

Indian-Spiced Vegetable Soup

Time: 40 Minutes
Serves 4

1 small onion, roughly chopped
3 carrots, sliced diagnonally
1 large Yukon gold potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 head small cauliflower, cut into 1-inch florets
4 Japanese turnips, peeled and quartered, about 1/2 lb
8-12 Thai chilies (optional)
1 tsp ginger, minced
1 tsp ground cumin
2 cardamom pods, cracked
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 medium vine ripe tomato, chopped

To Serve
Steamed rice or naan
4 green onions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped

In a large pot or Dutch oven, add onion, carrots, potato, cauliflower, turnips, chilies, cumin, and cardamom pods. Season with 1 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper to taste. Cover with 4 cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes, until the vegetables are tender. Add tomato and simmer for 10 minutes longer, until the soup reaches the desired consistency.

Serve soup in bowls with steamed rice or naan on the side. Garnish with green onions and cilantro and serve immediately!



Pan Seared Chicken Breasts with Orzo

This pan-seared chicken breast with orzo will delight your weeknight senses! It's French-inspired enough that I've served it up with a red wine reduction sauce, but easy enough that you can put dinner on the table in as little as 35 minutes. Did I mention that it tastes fantastic?

While I love a lot of different proteins with orzo, and orzo on its own as a vegetarian option, I don't think anything pairs better with the pasta than chicken. Together and with just a bit of butter, they create a mouthfeel like no other. Yum!

I served my chicken breasts up with some sage flowers growing freshly in the garden and a quick side salad of butter lettuce, escarole, red onions, and parmesan cheese lightly dressed with olive oil. Serve it how you like, it doesn't matter! It'll be fantastic any way you like it.

Pan-Seared Chicken Breasts with Orzo

Time: 35 Minutes
Serves 4

8 oz orzo
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 tbsp Parmesan-Reggiano, grated
5 tbsp butter, divided
1.5 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp lemon juice
2 tsp parsley leaves, chopped
1.5 lbs chicken breast halves
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup dry red wine
1/4 cup chicken broth
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Bring 1 quart of water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add orzo with 1 tsp salt and boil until the orzo is tender and has absorbed most of the liquid. Stir in Parmesan-Reggiano, 2 tsbp butter, lemon zest, lemon juice, and parsley. Adjust seasonings to taste and remove from heat. Keep warm.

On a large cutting board, pound the chicken breasts with a mallet to an even 3/4-inch thickness. Debone chicken breast halves, leaving the skin intact, and separating tenderloins from the breast. Season with salt and pepper. Add flour to a large plate and lightly coat each cutlet by dredging in flour.

In a small bowl, add wine, chicken broth, and dijon mustard. Stir to combine and set aside. 

Heat 2 tbsp butter and 1 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add chicken breasts and tenderloins skin-side up, and sear for 3 minutes on each side. Transfer chicken to a plate and keep warm. Add red wine mixture to the pan and reduce by half. Then tilt the skillet to whisk in 1 tbsp butter. Remove from heat.

Serve chicken on plates over orzo and drizzle with the red-wine reduction sauce and a side salad.



Spicy Korean-Style Chicken with Mushrooms 

Who needs their spicy Korean food fix this weekend? This Korean-style chicken with mushrooms will satiate your need for deep red chilis, no matter your comfort level with spicy food! 

This is because you can adjust the gochujang paste up or down from what I recommend below. I’d say 4 tablespoons would produce a dish that’s medium-spicy, but you could use 2-3 tablespoons for a milder dish. I personally used 6 tablespoons of gochujang and probably 15 birdseye chilis and loved every bite. If you know me as well as you think you do, my spicy additions shouldn’t be a surprise, because you know I’m obsessed with hot peppers!

If you’re shy to spice, feel free to challenge your palate turn your heat levels up just a notch! It’ll be good for you! Capsaicin increases your body temperature just enough to boost your metabolism slightly and help you burn more calories. Over time and with consistency, a spicy habit could mean good things for your waistline.

Other notes about the recipe: feel free to substitute green garlic with 4 thinly sliced garlic cloves and 4 thinly sliced scallions. I chose green garlic because it’s in season and it’s soooo delicious, but if you have to substitute, this dish will be just as delicious! 

Spicy Korean-Style Chicken with Mushrooms 

Time: 45 Minutes
Serves 4

2 lbs skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
4-6 tbsp gochujang chili paste (to taste)
4 tbsp sesame oil, divided
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp light brown sugar
4 green garlic bulbs and stems, white and pale green parts only, thinly sliced
1 tbsp chopped fresh ginger
2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
12 oz crimini mushrooms, trimmed and thinly sliced
10 dried birdseye chilis, stemmed (optional)
1 small bunch chives, chopped
Steamed rice, to serve
Kimchi, to serve (optional)

In a large mixing bowl, add chicken, gochujang, 2 tbsp sesame oil, soy sauce, light brown sugar, green garlic, ginger, and sesame seeds. Marinate for 20 minutes and up to 2 hours.

Meanwhile, heat 2 tbsp sesame oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and season with salt and pepper. Sauté for 10-15 minutes until browned and tender. Add chicken with marinade, 1/2 cup water, and birdseye chilis. Reduce heat to a low simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 20-25 minutes until chicken is cooked through. 

Serve over steamed rice with kimchi on the side. Garnish chicken with chives and serve immediately.



The Best Barbecue Chicken Sandwich Ever!


It's my birthday and my one year Instagram anniversary! To thank everyone for being a part of my Instagram and social media journey, I've partnered with #Saucin' Sauces on this sponsored post to make this AMAAAAZING chicken sandwich and to offer you a giveaway!

To enter the giveaway, 1. LIKE #Saucin's Instagram account and 2. COMMENT on the above chicken sandwich picture, tagging two friends and mentioning what you'd like to make with their sauce. You have until Thursday, 5/4/17 at 2:30pm to enter! One winner will be selected to win two of Saucin' Sauces' Original barbecue sauce, which is absolutely divine!

Now, this being my birthday, it is definitely a cheat day! I'm just sitting here stuffing my face with fried onions and dunking them in Saucin' every chance I get! I may be exaggerating a little, but it's not completely fiction either! Did I mention it's only 2pm as I'm writing this right now? Plenty of time to eat even more leftovers!

But if it's not your cheat day or your birthday, Saucin' is not only tasty, but it is also a pretty healthy sauce! This is because it has twenty less calories per serving than your average barbecue sauce and has real ingredients that you can recognize on the label! Pretty incredible in my dietitian opinion.

What I also love about Saucin' is that the sauce is versatile. You can put this delicious barbecue sauce on anything ranging from your breakfast eggs, to a chicken salad, to your favorite grilling protein. It's tangy, sweet, and has just a hint of spice that really helps to balance out the flavor.

Are you ready for the best chicken sandwich recipe ever yet?! I used a few great ideas to write this recipe from Serious Eats' article on how to make the best barbecue chicken sandwich. But I also decided to make some insanely delicious fried onion strings to top it all off with help from The Food Network. Everything else pretty much came to me on the fly! 

Be sure to check out Saucin's website and order some of their delicious Original Sauce! They have free shipping too, which makes it a great deal.

The Best Barbecue Chicken Sandwich Ever!

Total Time: 1 Hour, 30 Minutes
Hands-On Time: 30 Minutes
Serves 4

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (~1.5 lbs)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 (12 oz) bottle Saucin' Original Barbecue Sauce
4 slices sharp cheddar cheese slices
4 hamburger bun halves
1 small head iceberg lettuce
2 medium vine ripe tomatoes, thinly sliced

Fried Onion Strings
2 large onions, sliced thinly
2 cups buttermilk
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbsp salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp cayenne pepper
Canola oil, for frying

Soak two handfuls of oak chips (optional) in a bowl of water for at least 15 minutes and up to two hours. Drain.

Lay chicken flat onto a cutting board. Pound with a mallet or with the back of a heavy frying pan to reach an even 3/4-inch thickness. Pat chicken dry with paper towels and transfer to a medium platter. 

Combine 1 tsp of kosher salt and ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper in a small bowl. Sprinkle over chicken breasts evenly on each side. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Pat dry with paper towels. 

While the chicken brines, prepare fried onions placing them in a shallow baking dish and pouring buttermilk over the top. Press the onions down so they're submerged as much as possible and let them soak on the counter for 15 minutes and up to one hour.

In a bowl, combine the flour, salt, black pepper and cayenne, and set aside. 

Pour enough canola oil to cover your pot or Dutch oven to a 3-inch depth. Heat to 375 degrees F, or until a pinch of flour sizzles when sprinkled over the pot. 

Using tongs, remove a handful of onions from the buttermilk and immediately dunk into the flour mixture. Coat the onions in the flour mixture, and then tap them on the inside of the bowl to shake off the excess. 

Plunge the onions in the hot oil. Break them up with a spoon and fry for 1-2 minutes, until golden brown. Remove them from the oil and place on a paper towel-lined plate. Repeat with the remaining onion slices. Keep warm.

Clean and oil the barbecue grate. Preheat your charcoal grill by piling and lighting enough coals on one side to produce a medium-high flame. 

Wrap the drained oak chips loosely in aluminum foil, ensuring the ends are able to vent. Set oak chips over the coals, replacing the grate, and let sit for 7-10 minutes, until chips begin to smoke. 

Add 1/2 cup Saucin’ to a small bowl. Reserve for grilling.

Grill chicken for about 3 minutes on one side, basting with reserved Saucin’, and covering between basting. Flip chicken over, and cover, basting with Saucin’ for 2 more minutes. Add cheese to each piece of chicken and cook until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 160F. Transfer chicken to a large plate and keep warm.

Note: If the chicken is cooked well on the outside, but doesn’t reach the proper temperature, transfer to the the cooler side of the grill and cover until cooked through.

Add the buns to the grill. Flip over and cook until toasted on the other side.

Top the bottom bun halves with about 1 tbsp Saucin, followed by the cheesy grilled chicken, lettuce, tomatoes, and fried onions. Drizzle with a little Saucin’ on the top and close with the remaining bun half. Serve immediately and enjoy!

If you liked this recipe, be sure to check out my recipes for Beet Rueben SandwichWhole Wheat Croque-Madames, and Salmon Burger with Chipotle Mayonnaise and Caperberries!



Fresh Pasta with Favas, Tomatoes, and Sausage

Fava beans are growing like crazy in my garden right now and that makes me soooo happy! This season Adrian and I grew more favas than ever and we have enough to make a few different fava bean recipes. I bet you can see the smile on my face as I’m typing this.

Also known as broad beans, fava beans have actually been grown for ages! Humans have been growing them for consumption in the Mediterranean since at least 6500 BC and began cultivation even earlier in the Middle East.

I'm guessing one reason we've grown them this long is because they’re ridiculously healthy! One cup of fava beans will provide you with 44% of the folate you need per day, 36% of your manganese, and 37% of your fiber. They’re also buttery and sweet, so they’re the best combination of tasty and healthy in  my opinion.

One of our favorite fava bean pasta recipes is by Alex Palermo. It’s so good that it would be a shame for you to make any alterations, except maybe adding some red pepper flakes. I recommend making this recipe as is before making any substitutions or omissions. 

Also be sure to make this fava bean recipe with high quality Italian sausage, plum tomatoes, and Pecorino Romano so that your taste buds are guaranteed to be dazzled. We hadn’t tried this fava recipe in a few years and were taken aback by how good it was...AGAIN! Serve the pasta up with a little red or white wine and your meal is complete.

Speaking of wine, Pulltaps sent me a free corkscrew to share with all of you and it’s pretty neat! Check out the corkcscrew below with my Diet Assassinista logo superimposed over one of my Instagram recipes!  

To pull this off (if you don't mind my play on words!), Pulltaps used a sublimation technique, which can be used with any picture or logo. The quality is super top-notch. Is it okay that I feel a little extra special having my own personalized corkscrew? I hope so. Be sure to check out their website if you want to purchase your own personalized corkscrew too!

Back to the recipe, it is super easy to make. The only time consuming part is peeling fava beans, so I recommend two people for the task if you want dinner to be done in a jiffy. But if you only have two hands, the positive side of peeling favas on your own is that the process can be very meditative. Just turn on some nice music and get ready to get to know this delicious bean a little better. 

Do note: if you’re on an MAOI inhibitor or have G6PD, you will want to steer clear of the bean! I bet you probably already knew that anyway! 

Fresh Pasta with Favas, Tomatoes, and Sausage

Time: 30 Minutes
Serves 8

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
2 large garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
1/8 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
1/2 pound Italian sausages, casings removed
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 3/4 cups chopped plum tomatoes
1 cup shelled fresh fava beans (from about 1 pound), blanched 3 minutes then peeled
3/4 pound fresh pasta sheets, cut as desired
2 tablespoons finely grated Pecorino Romano cheese plus additional for passing

Heat oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add next 3 ingredients. Sauté until onion is translucent, about 6 minutes. Add sausages; break up with fork. Sauté until brown, about 3 minutes. Add wine; simmer 1 minute, scraping up browned bits. Add tomatoes and fava beans. Sauté until tomatoes soften, about 5 minutes. Season sauce with salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to bite. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup pasta cooking liquid. Return pasta to same pot.

Add sauce to pasta. Toss over medium heat until sauce coats pasta, adding reserved cooking liquid as needed if dry, about 2 minutes. Mix in 2 tablespoons cheese. Transfer pasta to bowl. Serve, passing additional cheese.



Ramen with Rainbow Chard in a Rich Slow-Cooker Bone Broth


Ramen, it’s what’s for dinner! This ramen has a very rich bone broth made with my very own Numo Chicken Broth Kit and is infused with a lot of yummy asian flavors, as well as rainbow chard and hard boiled eggs. It’s absolutely delightful!

This ramen is so easy to make that this could be your dinner as well! No, you don’t have to have one ounce of jealousy, whether you’re a newbie to making bone broth, or you’re watching what you eat. This is because you get to see the very real ingredients going in at every easy step! And much of this is due to the fact that I made the dish with Numo's Chicken Bone Broth!

Numo’s Chicken Bone Broth was breeze to make in my slow-cooker and had almost zero hands-on time. I simply popped the pouch of ingredients in a slow cooker for 12-15 hours and I had a seriously delicious broth on my hands. But this broth is not only delicious. It's ingredients are super transparent! Just seven simple and organic ingredients: pre-baked chicken bones, carrots, onions, medjool dates, cardamom, ginger, and bay leaf. Kind of amazing stuff, isn’t it?

This broth is so delicious, in fact, that when I made my first kit overnight, it woke me from a deep slumber. I was literally dreaming about leaning over a pot of boiling broth in my dreams and smelling some incredible aromas. But then my brain woke me up at 4 am to tell me “LOOK! This tantalizing broth is actually real!” So, I listened to what my brain had to tell me and I walked to the kitchen to taste it. Even before it was done cooking, it was incredibly rich and lovely, and I knew I would be in for a treat with this ramen.

Ramen can get a bad rap sometimes, but you can definitely make a healthy ramen if you make it at home and see every ingredient going into it. I purchased fresh ramen noodles with less than four ingredients, as well as organic soy sauce, and a bunch of other fresh organic ingredients like chard, garlic, ginger, and garden-grown chives. It’s so transparent and so delicious that you will love every bite, guilt-free!

Ramen with Rainbow Chard in a Rich Slow-Cooker Bone Broth

Total Time: 12 Hours, 25 Minutes
Hands-On Time: 25 Minutes
Serves 4

2 Numo Chicken Bone Broth Kits (about 12 cups prepared)
4 large eggs
1 tbsp fresh garlic, minced
1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
3 whole star anise
3 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp mirin
1 small bunch rainbow chard, leaves cut into 1/2-inch strips, stems chopped
4 sheets nori, thinly sliced
20 oz fresh ramen noodles
1 small bunch chives, chopped
Togarashi pepper, to taste

Prepare 2 kits of Numo Chicken Bone broth per package instructions. Cool.

Heat 12 cups of water to 180F or a very low simmer. Add eggs and maintain temperature at 180F for 6 minutes. Cool in an ice water bath. Peel eggs when cool. Cut in half if desired and set aside.

Heat sesame oil in a large pot over medium heat, until shimmering. Add the garlic, ginger, and star anise, and cook, stirring, for a few minutes until softened. Add the soy sauce and mirin and stir to combine. Continue stirring for another minute. Add the prepared Numo Chicken Broth and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Add chard and nori and cook for another minute, until tender. Add ramen and simmer per package instructions, about 1-2 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Divide the noodles and broth into large bowls. Top with chives and soft boiled egg halves. Serve immediately with sprinkles of togarashi pepper.

If you're looking for more recipes like this one, you're also going to love Thai-Infused Chicken Noodle SoupKorean Beef & Daikon Radish Soup, and Thai Stir-Fried Noodles with Kale and Chicken: Pad See Ew!

Do note that this post was sponsored by Numo Broth!



Crispy Pork Cutlet and Fried Egg Sandwich

It’s officially hump day and I think we all need a pick-me-up to get through the week! This pork cutlet sandwich is gooey and crispy at the same time and is bound to delight all of your senses. 

To pull off this fine sandwich on a weeknight, I suggest getting home a little earlier from work since this recipe will take you a little longer than an ideal weeknight meal. But on the upside, wouldn’t you rather spend a few extra minutes in your kitchen than in your office? I thought so! 

If you think your boss will be upset that you left early, you’re sure be in the clear when you bring leftover cutlets to the employee break room. In fact, your boss will be so pleased that you might even be encouraged to leave early more often!

This sandwich is great because the ingredients listed below don’t have to be rigid, which leaves you a lot of room for creativity. Adrian and I recently pickled some kale and knew it would pair perfectly with this sandwich, but if you don’t happen to have something similar in your pantry, feel free to use your favorite minced pickle or relish. We also played around with different spread variations and garden-grown greens. Every variation was exceptional.

I decided on the ingredients below to ease your mind if you’re not feeling super creative mid-week. But if your brain is still high-functioning, feel free to add whatever you wish!

Now what are you waiting for? Get shopping and start cooking!

Crispy Pork Cutlet and Fried Egg Sandwich

Time: 1 Hour
Serves 8

1 tbsp fresh sage, chopped
2 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1.25 lb pork tenderloins, sliced crosswise into 3/4-inch-thick medallions
1/2 cup all purpose flour
12 large eggs
2 cups panko breadcrumbs
3/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
Extra-virgin olive oil
2 oz baby arugula
1/2 cup garlic yogurt spread or Greek yogurt with 1 garlic clove, minced
1 large ciabatta roll, sliced crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices
1 tbsp capers, drained
1/2 cup pickled kale or other pickled green, finely chopped
Tabasco sauce

Combine sage and thyme in a small bowl with 1 tsp salt and 1 tsp black pepper.

On a large cutting board, pound the pork medallions with a mallet into 1/4-inch-thick pieces. Rub pork pieces on all sides with the herb mixture.  

Add flour to a large plate or shallow bowl. Whisk 3 eggs in a mixing bowl. Combine breadcrumbs and parmesan on another plate or small shallow bowl.

Coat each cutlet by first dredging lightly in flour, then dipping into the egg mixture, then fully coating with the breadcrumb  mixture.

In a large heavy skillet or Dutch oven, add 3/4 cups olive oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add pork pieces in batches, and cook until golden on each side, about 1-2 minutes. Transfer to a platter and keep warm.

In a medium bowl, combine arugula with 1 tsp olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. In another small bowl, add yogurt spread and mustard and stir to combine.

In a small shallow skillet, add enough olive oil to cover the bottom of the pan and heat over medium-high heat. Add remaining eggs, one at a time, spooning over olive oil, until the whites have set, but the yolk is still runny. Transfer to a plate, season with salt and pepper. Keep warm.

Baste ciabatta slices with olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Toast or broil slices until golden on each side. Top each ciabatta slice with yogurt-mustard spread, 1 tsp capers, and 1 tbsp kale pickles. Then top with the pork cutlet, fried egg, and garnish with arugula. Season with salt and pepper and serve with a few dashes of Tabasco if you so choose!



Goraasa be Dama: Sudanese Beef Stew over Easy Flatbread

A little over a month ago, I received an e-mail in my Diet Assassinista inbox asking me to make Sudanese food from a very nice Instagrammer named Moyassar. Now, I am quite familiar with food from Ethiopia and Eritrea, which are nearby, but never even thought to cook food from Sudan. There’s a first time for everything, I guess!

With Moyassar’s suggestion, I knew I would be in for a treat, but didn’t even know where to look for Sudanese recipes. So I asked him what I should make and he knew right away: Goraasa be Dama! Goraasa is a quick flatbread and dama is a beef stew. 

Moyassar sent me a link to a couple Lazeez Haalis recipes, which I adapted them after researching several other methods. Then, I decided to make it all. And you know what? The meal was fantastic!

The stew itself is not unlike beef stew that we’re used to in the West, but it does take a lot less time to cook. Plus, the spices and peppers make it more interesting than beef stew. Instead of serving the stew as a soup, this stew is served a little thicker, like a curry, over amazing bread! 

And that flatbread. Wow. Goraasa is so easy to make! I’ve made several quick flatbreads and this is my far the easiest flatbread recipe I’ve ever made. Even if you’re making Indian food and you forget to pick up some naan at the store, I suggest making Goraasa in its place because it’s likely you’ll have all the ingredient in a well-stocked pantry.

So if you’re craving cuisine you haven’t tried before, this meal is definitely a great one  to make. Many thanks to Moyassar for pointing me in a fun and tasty direction!

Goraasa be Dama: Sudanese Beef Stew over Easy Flatbread

Time: 35 Minutes
Serves 4

3 large yellow onions, chopped
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 lb flat iron steak, cut into 1-inch pieces
3 cups water
5 small vine ripe tomatoes, chipped
1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
3 serrano peppers, chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp cardamom
1 tsp cinnamon

500g whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
4 cups water
1 tsp Kosher salt

In a large skillet or Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onions and fry until translucent, about 5-6 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in tomatoes, steak, bell pepper, serranos, cardamom, and cinnamon. Season to taste with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in tomato paste, adding additional water if the sauce is too thick, and simmer for another 10 minutes, until the steak is cooked through and the peppers are tender. Keep warm.

To prepare the goraasa, sift whole wheat flour into a large mixing bowl. Add baking powder, salt, and stir in water to form a thick batter. 

Brush a medium cast-iron skillet or mitad with very thin layer of olive oil and heat over medium heat.  Pour in a ladle-full of batter and work quickly to flatten out with a spatula, shaping the bread into round. Flip when golden, and cook until golden on the opposite side. Repeat with remaining batter to make additional rounds.

Serve dama over goraasa and enjoy!