Category Archives: Main Dishes

No Cook

Try Our “No Cook” Recipes On Those Hot Summer Days

You know what they say, “If you can’t stand the heat, get out off the kitchen”! Nothing could be truer on a sweltering summer day.  But you still have to eat!  What to do?

Not to worry, we have you covered. Anyone can prepare delicious dishes using Jeff’s Naturals all-natural line of olives, peppers, capers and sun-dried tomatoes. Our recipe catalog is chock full of ideas you can use to prepare meals that are not only delicious and refreshing, they come together effortlessly without the heat!

Here are some “no cook” recipes to dash up delicious meals without having to turn on the stove!

New! Stuffed Greek Pita

StuffedGreekPita

Prep Time: 20 min. | Total Time: 20 min. | Serves: 4

Ingredients

Preparation

In a mixing bowl combine the tomatoes, spinach, cucumber, feta, olives, peperoncinis, sweet bell pepper strips and capers.

In a separate bowl whisk together the olive oil, oregano, lemon juice, and crushed garlic.

Once ready to serve, toss the dressing with the vegetables. Cut the pita rounds in half and divide the mixture evenly among the 8 pita rounds.

Serve.

Delicious! Watermelon, Olive, Jalapeño and Feta Salad

WatermelonSalad

Prep Time: 20 min. | Total Time: 20 min. | Serves: 4

Ingredients

Directions:

In a large mixing bowl add all ingredients and gently mix.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Chill for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

Served chilled.

Chef’s note: A refreshing salad, perfect side dish for any meal. Great with grilled dishes and sandwiches.

Refreshing! Cold Peperoncini and Cucumber Yogurt Soup

Recipe: Cold Peperoncini and Cucumber Yogurt Soup

Prep Time: 10 min | Total Time: 10 min | Serves: 4

Ingredients

Directions:

Strain yogurt through cheesecloth to remove excess water and milk.

Add all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Chill and serve cold.

Chef’s Note: Serve as shooters for a small appetizer, as a summer soup, or as a sauce for a light and healthy fish dish.

New! Muffuletta Sandwich

Muffuletta_Sandwich_cropped

Prep Time: 15 min. | Total Time: 15 min. | Serves: 4-6

Ingredients

Olive Salad:

Bread:

  • Hollow out 1 loaf round Italian bread

Cheese, Meats, Garnishes:

  • 6 oz. provolone cheese, sliced
  • 2 oz. capicollo, thinly sliced
  • 2 oz. Genoa salami, thinly sliced
  • 2 oz. ham, thinly sliced
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • Romaine lettuce

*Calculated ingredients may not always be as accurate as the original recipe.

Directions

Finely chop the vegetables and olives for the olive salad. Combine all salad ingredients; set aside.

Cut the loaf of bread in half crosswise. Use a small, serrated knife to score the inside of both halves about 1″ from the crust. Hollow the bread halves by pulling out the insides with your hands. Leave shells about 1″ thick. Save the bread chunks for other uses.

Spoon salad into bottom half of loaf. Layer 2 oz. cheese over the salad. Top with one type of meat; repeat.

Finish layering with last of cheese and meat. Top with tomato and lettuce.

Use an electric knife to cut the sandwich into four wedges. If you don’t have one, use a very sharp serrated knife. Just saw carefully and don’t press too hard–or you might squish the entire filling out.

Muffulettas can be served hot or cold.

Vegetarian Recipes

Two Vegetarian Recipes You Will Actually Want to Make

Summer is coming and that means our selection of seasonal fruits and vegetables are even better! We all know there is overwhelming evidence that people who follow a diet high in fruits and vegetables tend to enjoy benefits such as lower blood pressure, lower risk of death, lower chance of life threatening disease (i.e. cancer, heart disease, diabetes), and a much lower risk of obesity.

The more simple and delicious meat-free recipes you can learn the better off your diet will be in the long run.

Here are two recipes that you will actually enjoy vegging out on:

Zucchini Ribbons with Kalamata Olives & Sundried Tomatoes

unnamed
INGREDIENTS
2/3 cup fresh ricotta
1 fresh lemon, zested and juiced
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced on mandolin
2 shallots, thinly sliced on mandolin
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper chili flake
5 medium zucchini, thinly sliced on mandolin
½ cup julienned Jeff’s Naturals Sun-Ripened Dried Tomatoes, drained with some oil reserved.
½ cup Jeff’s Naturals Organic Pitted Whole Greek Kalamata Olives, drained and rough chopped
Salt and freshly ground pepper

PREPARATION
In a small mixing bowl, combine the ricotta with the lemon juice and zest and set aside.

In a large skillet on medium high heat, add the olive oil and heat until hot. Add the garlic, shallots and chili flake and cook 5-7 minutes or until onions and garlic are softened.

Add the zucchini, season with salt and pepper, and toss frequently for about 5 minutes until zucchini is tender. Turn heat off and add the ricotta, sundried tomatoes and kalamata olives. Toss to mix.

Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with a little sundried tomato oil drizzled over the top.

Roasted Cauliflower with Tahini, Capers & Peppers

unnamed
1 large cauliflower, trimmed and cut into florets
3 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper
2 tablespoons Jeff’s Naturals Imported Non-Pareil Capers, drained
½ cup diced Jeff’s Naturals Roasted Bell Pepper Strips, drained
Tahini sauce
½ cup tahini
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 clove garlic, pressed or minced
½ cup water
PREPARATION
Preheat oven to 500ºF

Toss cauliflower with olive oil. Season with S & P, toss again. Roast at 500ºF for about 15 minutes or until slightly charred and tender. Check the cauliflower frequently and stir on the sheet tray to get even roasting.

Remove cauliflower from oven, and place in a mixing bowl. Toss with capers, red peppers and add enough tahini sauce to thoroughly coat the cauliflower. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve.

Great served hot or room temperature.

Jeff's Peperoncini & Sun-Dried Tomato Guacamole

Five Fabulous Cinco De Mayo Dishes to Make With Jeff’s Naturals

With Cinco de Mayo just a couple of weeks away, we thought it would be fun to share Five FABULOUS Southwest/Mexican inspired recipes you can make with Jeff’s Naturals products in your pantry!

Cinco de Mayo’s the perfect opportunity to craft  a menu with a little heat to it (and an assortment of delicious drinks to wash it down)! These five easy and delicious recipes made with Jeff’s Naturals Non-GMO products are bound to have your guests chanting “mas mas mas!”

NEW! Turkey Chili Burritos

Turkey Chili Burrito

Prep Time: 15min | Total Time: 45min | Serves: 8

Ingredients

Directions

In a large skillet, over medium high heat, stir turkey, garlic, olive oil, bell pepper and onion, breaking turkey apart, until juices evaporate and turkey meat is lightly browned, about 15 minutes. Add the chili powder, ground cumin and pepper.  Stir and cook 2 minutes. Then add the marinara sauce, jalapenos, cilantro, and olives. Stir often, until flavors are blended, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, stack flour tortillas and seal in foil. Bake in a 350° F oven, until hot in the center, about 7 minutes. To assemble each burrito, spoon the turkey mixture down the center of each tortilla. Top equally with hot sauce, cheese, lettuce and sour cream. Fold bottom, then sides of tortilla over filling to enclose. Hold to eat.

NEW! Mexican Nachos

Mexican Nachos

Prep Time: 10min | Total Time: 20min | Serves: 4

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces of tortilla chips
  • 2 cups shredded Mexican Cheese Blend
  • ¾ cup black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup shredded rotisserie chicken
  • 1 cup Jeff’s Naturals Sliced Tamed Jalapeño Peppers
  • 1/3 cup sliced green onion
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ½ cup guacamole
  • ¼ cup Chili Pepper Spread

Directions

On a sheet pan, spread the chips out in an even layer.  Layer on the toppings and evenly sprinkle the cheese, beans, chicken, jalapenos and green onion over the chips.  Bake about 5-10 minutes or until the cheese is melted.  Remove from oven and top with sour cream, guacamole and chili pepper spread.  Serve immediately.

CLASSIC: Jalapeño Lime Margarita

JALAPENO LIME MARGARITA

Prep time: 5mins.   Total Time: 5 mins.   Serves: 6

Ingredients:

Directions:

Combine 4-6 cups of Ice, 1 (12 oz.) can frozen limeade concentrate, 1 cup tequila and ¼ cup of triple sec into a blender and blend until smooth. Add a splash of Sliced Tamed™ Jalapeño Pepper brine to taste and blend again. Pour into a glass rimmed with salt and garnish with a lime wedge and jalapeño ring.

NEW! Peperoncini & Sun-Ripened Dried Tomatoe Guacamole

Guacamole

Ingredients

Directions:

In a large mixing bowl, mash the avocado with a fork. Stir in the peperoncini, tomatoes, onion and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Great served with pita chips for a fun twist!

FAVORITE: Black Bean & Roasted Red Pepper Salsa

Black Bean & Roasted Red Pepper Salsa

Prep Time: 10min | Total Time: 35min | Serves: 4

Ingredients

Directions:

Drain and 1-½ jars of Jeff’s Naturals Roasted Bell Pepper Strips and chop.

In a large mixing bowl, toss red peppers with all other ingredients. Refrigerate for 25 minutes and serve.

Three Recipes for a Delicious Easter Dinner

Easter’s the perfect time of the year to spend a moment together with loved ones and converse over a delicious, well-cooked meal. When you’re hosting, however, it can be very easy to feel overwhelmed with preparations.

Let us take some of the weight off your shoulders with these easy-to-prepare, healthy, succulent recipes made with Jeff’s Naturals line of all natural Mediterranean products).

Encrusted Salmon with Olive Pesto

Encrusted-Salmon-with-Olive-Pesto

Prep Time: 10 min  |  Total Time: 25 min  |  Serves: 4-6

Ingredients

For the Pesto:

  • 3/4 c. Jeff’s Naturals™ Whole Pitted Kalamata Olives
  • 1 c. Italian fresh parsley leaves
  • 1/3 c. basil leaves
  • 2 tsp. crushed garlic
  • 1/2 c. + 1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil (divided)
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/3 c. toasted pine nuts
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the Salmon:

  • 6 salmon 5 oz. each
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Lemon wedges for garnish

Directions:

Place all pesto ingredients in food processor and blend until thoroughly mixed into a textured pesto sauce.

Season 5 oz. salmon with salt and pepper. Drizzle roasting pan with olive oil and place salmon over it.

Spread pesto on the salmon and roast in oven at 375° F for about 10 to 12 minutes.

Squeeze fresh lemon on salmon just before serving.

Chef Notes: Also very good for sea bass, grilled steak, grilled shrimp and grilled chicken. Use as a spread on toasted bread topped with Jeff’s Naturals Roasted Bell Peppers Strips and goat cheese.

Peperoncini Potato Salad

Peperoncini Potato Salad

Prep Time:  5min | Total Time: 25min | Serves: 4

Ingredients

Directions:

Place washed potatoes into a pot with cold water, season with salt so it tastes “salty like the sea” and bring water to a boil on high heat. Cook potatoes until they are easily pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes.

Drain and rinse under cool water. Cut potatoes into bite size pieces and place into a medium sized mixing bowl. Add the peperoncini, capers, zest and parsley. Drizzle on the olive oil and gently toss to combine. Add a tablespoon or two of the peperoncini brine for some added “zing”. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve.

Spring Spinach Salad with Blue Cheese Stuffed Olives

Recipe: Spring Spinach Salad with Blue Cheese Stuffed Olives

Prep Time: 20 min | Total Time: 30 min | Serves: 4-6

Ingredients

For the Salad:

For the Dressing:

  • 2/3 c. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp. crushed garlic
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 3 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Cook bacon, drain and set aside to cool. Chop blue cheese stuffed olives crosswise, into rounds. Slice apple into 1/2-inch by 1/2-inch pieces. Chop bacon. Combine all ingredients with spinach.

Combine all dressing ingredients and whisk until combined, and drizzle over salad. Serve immediately.

Three Easy Comfort Food Recipes

You know what they say about March.  “In like a lion, out like a lamb”.  We thought this would be a good time to share some of our favorite comfort food recipes to get you through these last few weeks of winter.

Here are some recipes for those days when you just want to feel a little nostalgic while eating a meal that almost rivals the ones mom used to make.

Mediterranean Pot Roast

Recipe: Mediterranean Pot Roast

Prep Time: 10 min. | Total Time: 4-6 hrs. | Serves: 8-10

Ingredients

Directions

Season all sides of the pot roast liberally with salt and pepper.

In a large Dutch oven or slow cooker, add the onions, garlic, bay leaves, and wine.  Next sprinkle in the Italian seasoning.  Lay the pot roast in and add the peperoncini, red bell peppers, artichoke hearts, and sundried tomatoes.  Add enough broth to cover everything in the pot.

Cook either in a 325º F oven or in a slowcooker on medium for approximately 4-6 hours or until fork tender.  If vegetables begin to get too soft before meat is fork tender, remove vegetables from sauce and continue to cook the meat only until done. (At this point the sauce can be degreased, finished and served or it can be put into the refrigerator overnight to let the fat harden for easy removal the following day.)

Pour the sauce into a saucepan and place on the stove on medium heat.  In a small bowl combine the cornstarch and mix some hot cooking liquid in to create a smooth paste.  Add cornstarch slurry to sauce and stir/whisk until smooth.  Let the sauce simmer to thicken for a few minutes until desired consistency is reached.  Re-season with salt and pepper to taste if necessary.

To serve, place the shredded meat, veggies and sauce over egg noodles, cheesy grits, creamy polenta, or mashed potatoes.

Grownup Spicy Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

 Grownup-Spicy-Grilled-Cheese-Sandwiches

Prep Time: 10min  |  Total Time: 20 min  |  Serves: 4

Ingredients

Directions:

In Milan, toasted cheese sandwiches are a popular gourmet treat. The cheese is laid over the artisan bread and then topped with olives, roasted peppers and herbs. The sandwich is closed, pressed tightly and browned on both sides with olive oil. This easy to make recipe is perfect for anyone in a time crunch.

Mix the sliced olives and sliced roasted red peppers in a bowl with the garlic and cilantro or green onion. Sprinkle 4 slices of bread with half of the cheese and then top with pepper/olive mixture. Apply the remaining cheese as another layer. Top with a second piece of bread and press together.

Use a Panini press or heat the olive oil in a skillet and gently brown the sandwiches, turning once or twice as the cheese melts and holds the bread together. Some of the cheese will ooze out and crisp in the skillet, which is delicious, even if it browns slightly.

Place sandwiches on a napkin lined plate to absorb the excess cooking oils. Serve hot.

Jalapeño Cornbread

Jalapeño Cornbread

Prep Time: 10 min |  Total Time: 25 min  | Serves: 8

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 c. buttermilk
  • ½ c. whole milk
  • 4 tsp. butter, melted
  • 2/3 c. Jeff’s Naturals Diced Tamed™ Jalapeño Peppers, drained
  • ½ c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ c. corn meal
  • 1 ½ tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • 2 Tbsp. cilantro, finely chopped
  • ½ tsp. salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425°F. In one bowl, mix eggs, buttermilk, milk and butter. Stir in jalapeños.

In another bowl, mix flour, corn meal, baking powder, baking soda, cilantro and salt.

Fold wet mixture into dry mixture. Pour into a buttered baking dish. Bake for 20 minutes.

Rest and allow corn bread to cool. Cut into squares or wedges and serve with butter or a black pepper-flavored honey.

Fourth of July Cookout

8 All-American Cookout Recipes with a Mediterranean Twist

Now that summer is in full gear, it’s time to light up the grill and get cooking! Since just about everyone loves a good old-fashioned summer BBQ, we wanted to share some of our favorite All-American Cookout Classics with a Mediterranean twist. These crowd-pleasing appetizers, sides, and main dishes may even top the Fourth of July fireworks!

#1 Pepper Stuffed Burger

Fourth of July Recipe Burgers

Prep Time: 5 min.
Total Time: 20 min.
Serves: 1

INGREDIENTS
6 ounces ground hamburger, 80/20
1 ½ tablespoon shredded cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons Jeff’s Naturals Diced Tamed Jalapeños
Hamburger bun,toastedToppings: lettuce, sliced onion, guacamole, tomato, cooked bacon and extra Jeff’s Naturals Diced Tamed Jalapeños

PREPARATION
Divide and firmly shape the meat into 2 patties. Place cheese and jalapenos into the center of one patty, leaving the outer edge free. Top with the second patty and pinch the edges together. Season with salt and pepper.
Preheat grill. On medium high heat, cook each side of the burger for 6 minutes or until internal temp reaches 160°F. Remove from grill and set aside.
On a toasted bun, add lettuce, onion, burger, guacamole, tomato, bacon and more Mezzetta Peppers.

#2 Baja Fruit Salad

MZ_RecipeImage_Baja_Fruit_Salad
Prep Time: 10 min.
Total Time: 45 min.
Serves: 2-4

INGREDIENTS
2 cans (20 oz.) juiced packed pineapple chunks, drained
1 can (15 oz.) mandarin oranges, drained
1/2 cup Jeff’s Naturals Roasted Bell Pepper Strips, chopped
1/2 cup chopped jicama
1 t. brown sugar
1 t. fresh lime juice
1 t. chopped fresh cilantro
2 T. shredded coconuts

PREPARATION
Combine all ingredients except coconut in a large bowl and toss well to mix. Top with coconut just before serving. Makes about 4 servings.

#3 Mexican Hot Dogs With Grilled Corn Salsa

MEXICAN HOT DOGS WITH GRILLED CORN SALSA
Photo Courtesy of Heart Beet Kitchen

A delicious spicy twist on Hot Dogs made with Jeff’s Naturals diced Jalapenos. Click here for full recipe.

#4 Peperoncini Potato Salad

Cook Out Potato Salad

Prep Time: 5 min.
Total Time: 25 min.
Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS
2 pounds medium red skin potatoes, rinsed
1 cup Jeff’s Naturals Deli-Sliced Peperoncini, drained, with brine reserved
3 tablespoons Jeff’s Naturals Non-Pareil Capers, drained
½ fresh lemon, zested
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper

PREPARATION
Place washed potatoes into a pot with cold water, season with salt so it tastes “salty like the sea” and bring water to a boil on high heat. Cook potatoes until they are easily pierced with the tip of a knife, about 15 minutes.

Drain and rinse under cool water. Cut potatoes into bite size pieces and place into a medium sized mixing bowl. Add the peperoncini, capers, zest and parsley. Drizzle on the olive oil and gently toss to combine. Add a tablespoon or two of the peperoncini brine for some added “zing”. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve.

#6 Mediterranean Burger

Mediterranean Burger
Prep Time: 10 min.
Total Time: 30 min.
Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS
2 lb. 80/20 ground beef, divided into 4 patties
Salt and pepper, to season
½ c. feta cheese, crumbled
½ c. Jeff’s Naturals Organic Sliced Kalamata Olives, roughly chopped
1/3 c. Jeff’s Naturals Sun-Ripened Dried Tomatoes, roughly chopped
4 hamburger buns, toasted
Toppings – baby spinach and sliced red onion

PREPARATION
Heat a large skillet on medium-high heat. Season each side of the burger patties with salt and pepper. When skillet is hot, cook each side of the burger for 4-5 minutes or to your desired doneness. Top with feta cheese during the last few minutes of cooking time.

To assemble the burgers, place the burger on the bottom half of the toasted bun, next add olives and sundried tomatoes. Top with spinach and red onion and serve hot.
Chef’s note: for a Greek burger spread, try mixing the feta cheese into some Greek yogurt, add some fresh mint and smear onto the burger buns.

#7 Mediterranean Bean Salad

Tuscan-Bean-Salad
Prep Time: 10 min.
Total Time: 1 hr. 10 min
Serves: 8-10

INGREDIENTS
1 can (15 oz.) small white beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (15 oz.) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 jar Artichoke Hearts, coarsely chopped (not drained)
1 c. Jeff’s Naturals Roasted Red Bell Peppers, coarsely chopped (not drained)
3/4 c. Jeff’s Naturals Organic Pitted Whole Greek Kalamata Olives, cut in halves
1/2 c. red onion, finely chopped
1/4 c. Jeff’s Naturals Sun-Ripened Dried Tomatoes (not drained)
2 tbsp. white balsamic vinegar
1/2 c. fresh basil, sliced thin
salt and pepper to taste

PREPARATION
Stir together all ingredients except basil. Cover and let marinate, refrigerated, for a least 1 hour. Stir in basil just before serving.

#8 Watermelon, Olive, Jalapeño and Feta Salad

Recipe: Watermelon, Olive, Jalapeño and Feta Salad

Prep Time: 20 min
Total Time: 20 min
Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS:
1 Tbsp. Jeff’s Naturals Pitted Kalamata Olives, drained and diced
1 Tbsp. Jeff’s Naturals Sliced Tamed Jalapeño Peppers, drained and diced
2 c. seedless watermelon, rind removed, cut into 1”cubes
1/2 c. feta cheese, crumbled
1/4 c. red onion, finely diced
1 Tbsp. mint leaves, finely chopped
1 Tbsp. green onion, finely chopped
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

PREPARATION:
In a large mixing bowl add all ingredients and gently mix. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Chill for 5 to 10 minutes before serving. Served chilled.

Holiday Entertaining Made Simple with Jeff’s Naturals Organic Sun Ripened Tomatoes

Make Your Holiday Appetizers Meals Even Better with our ideas!
Make your holiday appetizers & meals even better with our ideas!

It may be winter, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the sweet flavor of a sun drenched California ripe tomato! How is this possible? Jeff’s Naturals Sun-Ripened Dried Tomatoes!

Our organic tomatoes are locally grown and dried whole under the California sun, then diced and packed with fresh herbs and olive oil. Their soft velvety texture and deep rich flavor makes them ideal for holiday appetizers, side dishes, salads, sandwiches, pizza and pasta and more!

Got a full house for the holidays? Keep them happy with these tasty serving ideas:

JN_Sun_Ripened_Mozarella_Garlic_Bread

JN_sundried_tomato_crescent_rolls

Make Yummy Breakfast or Holiday Brunch

Make Amazing Appetizers

Make Fabulous Main Dishes for Hungry House Guests

photo credit: CieraHolzenthal via photopin cc

When it Comes to Flavor and Fun, a Little Peperoncini Goes a Long Way

“Ugh…Pasta for dinner again?”

Does this sound familiar? If so, may we suggest adding a little twist to your regular quick weeknight dish? Why not throw in some Jeff’s Naturals sliced Golden Greek Peperoncini to liven things up! A little bit goes a long way to bring plenty flavor and fun to the table!

The possibilities are endless, you just have to get creative!

For instance, did you know you could liven up any sandwich or wrap with a hearty helping of our peperoncini? You can also toss peperoncini into a mixed green salad or top it on a pizza for an extra punch of flavor!

Pizza

How about creating a plentiful antipasto platter with our Whole Golden Greek Peperoncini, Kalamata Olives, marinated Artichoke Hearts, Roasted Bell Pepper Strips and assorted meats and cheeses? Or add some peperoncini & feta to your mac ‘n cheese for a spicy kick to the traditional recipe!

Who knew there were so many ways peperoncini can save dinner?

Here are 3 easy recipes that just may become an instant classic for you and your family! And with so little prep or need for a clean up, these dishes also made an ideal weeknight dinner (very helpful as the kids head back to school!).

Mediterranean Pasta Salad

Mediterranian Salad

1- 16 oz. package of dried rotelle pasta
8 oz. Jeff’s Naturals sliced Golden Greek Peperoncini, drained & chopped
8 oz. Jeff’s Naturals Organic Sliced Greek Kalamata Olives, drained
8 oz. Jeff’s Naturals Sun-Ripened Dried Tomatoes, not drained
8 oz. Jeff’s Naturals Roasted Bell Pepper Strips, chopped
2 Jars (4 oz) marinated Artichoke Hearts, drained, coarsely chopped
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. fresh cracked black pepper

Preparation
Boil Pasta according to the directions on the package. Rinse under cold water and drain thoroughly. Add pasta to a medium sized bowl along with the remaining ingredients. Blend together. The pasta salad may be served immediately or stored covered in the refrigerator for the following day. Enjoy!

Jeff’s Kickin’ Turkey Meatball Sandwich

Meatball Sandwich

2 c. prepared turkey meatballs
1 jar gourmet pasta sauce, (We like Tomato Basil- YUM!)
1 medium red onion
4 soft sandwich rolls
1 c. Jeff’s Naturals sliced Golden Greek Peperoncini
4 oz. provolone cheese, sliced

Preparation
Preheat oven to 400°F.

Heat 1/4 c. olive oil and prepare turkey meatballs according to package directions. Add pasta sauce and simmer on low. While meatballs are cooking, slice onion and cook in a skillet on medium high heat with remaining olive oil until edges are caramelized.

Open sandwich rolls and place on a baking sheet. Place onions on one side of the sandwich rolls. Place peperoncinis on the other side and top with provolone cheese. Heat in oven for five minutes, or until cheese melts. Remove pan from oven and add turkey meatballs to sandwiches. Serve with remaining sauce.

Best Ever Greek Salad

Greek Salad

1 c. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 c. white wine vinegar
2 Tbsp. dried oregano
2 c. feta cheese, diced
8 oz. Jeff’s Naturals sliced Golden Greek Peperoncini, drained & chopped
2 jars (15 oz.) Jeff’s Naturals Roasted Bell Pepper Strips, drained & sliced
3 green bell peppers, seeds and membranes removed, sliced
3 large cucumbers, preferably seedless, peeled and sliced
1 jar (16 oz.) jar Jeff’s Naturals Organic Sliced Greek Kalamata Olives, drained and roughly chopped
2 large red onions, peeled and thinly sliced
1-1/2 pints cherry tomatoes, halved
Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preparation
Combine all of the ingredients together in a stainless or non-reactive bowl, and toss together. Allow to marinate 15 minutes. Toss again before serving. Serve on nicely arranged lettuce leaves.

photo credit: mhaithaca via photopin cc

Jeff’s Dinner Inspiration: How to Host a “Make Your Own Pizza” Party

Make your own pizza party

It’s not always easy to come up with a dinner plan that accommodates a group of family or friends, especially if some of them have certain food allergies and/or restrictions. This why a “Make Your Own Pizza” party is an ideal solution! You can accommodate a large group or a small gathering. Got a food allergy? No problem. Your guest can choose what to put on their pizza. Lactose intolerant? Leave off the cheese and load up on the other goodies! Wheat intolerance? There are numerous gluten free pizza dough options out there! Your guests can customize their pizza any way they choose.

Not only are homemade pizzas delicious, making pizza allows your guests to get creative and is great conversation starter! In this post, we will guide you step by step on how to create a fun and delicious no-fuss dinner that will fit every just about any budget and taste.

Pizza

Step 1: Start with pre-made dough.
If you do not have time to make your own dough (and many of us don’t) purchase some pre-made dough. Contact your local pizza parlor and ask if you can purchase pre-made dough (tell them the number of guests you are hosting so they can estimate how much). If this is not an option, many grocery stores will carry pre-made dough. Figure this out in advance so you are not scrambling the day of your party.  

Step Two: Prep your dough in advance of your party.
Follow these dough tips from slice.seriouseats.com (visit this page for more great pizza tips!)

  • Make more than you need: Have at least 1 1/2 times the number of dough balls or shells as you have expected guests. Everybody loves leftovers, and you’re inevitably going to have a botched pie or two that will need to be reworked.
  • Make your dough at least a day in advance. Dough that’s had a three to five day rest in the refrigerator will be tastier and easier to work with than freshly made dough. It also makes set up for you planning simple.
  • Cold dough is impossible to work with. Pull your dough out, portion it into individual size balls, then let them sit on a lightly floured cutting board covered with plastic wrap and a towel for at least a couple hours before your guests arrive so it’ll be in prime condition to stretch.

Step Three: Offer a simple tomato pizza sauce
Start with a basic  homemade pizza sauce If you are feeling adventurous, add in a couple of fun alternative sauces like BBQ Pizza Sauce, Bechamel (white sauce) or Pesto

Step Four: Set out a variety of toppings for your guests to choose from.
Prep these in advance. Start with the basics (cheese, pepperoni) and kick things up with some unexpected ingredients (see below). Let your imagination go wild!

Pizza
Step Five: Let your guests assemble their pizzas.
Depending on the number of guests you have, you can stagger the number of people assembling the pizzas to accommodate your space and your oven.
Bake 2-3 pizzas at a time for 10-12 minutes at 425 degrees. Enjoy and Repeat as necessary!

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photo credit: ecospc via photopin cc