Gyro frittata

Gyro frittata

Some time ago I made the gyro tostada. The package of gyro slices came with enough for 2 servings. So I tossed the remaining gyro meat into the freezer. Then I thought, how about a gyro frittata?

Since the gyro slices are Greek, including some feta cheese and Kalamata olives seemed like a natural choice. I limited the quantities of these to keep the focus on the gyro meat. This turned out to be a very good frittata.

Gyro frittata

gyro slices
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
5 Kalamata olives cut into quarters lengthwise
olive oil

3 eggs
olive oil

Put a small amount of olive oil in the pan and let it get hot. Put in the gyro slices and cook for about 20 seconds on each side. Remove and cut into 1/2-inch pieces.

Put the eggs into a good-sized mixing bowl and beat just to mix them up. Add a bit more oil to the pan if needed and let it get hot. Add a small amount of the eggs to the pan to set the bottom of the frittata to prevent sticking. Turn the heat down to medium low. Mix the gyro pieces, feta cheese, and olives into the eggs. Pour the mixture into the pan. Cook this for about 5 minutes to set the bottom and sides.

Preheat the broiler. When the 5 minutes cooking on the stove are up, place the pan under the broiler, about 6 to 7 inches below. Cook until the top is set and just starts to brown. This is about 1–1/2 to 2 minutes for me, but watch closely.

Remove from the broiler, loosen up the sides with a spatula if necessary, and slide the frittata out onto the serving plate.

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Tuna pea and cheddar pasta salad

Tuna, pea, and cheddar pasta salad

This is a very simple pasta salad that makes a nice meal. Like some of my other pasta salads, the idea for this comes from a salad I saw in the deli section of a supermarket. That was a pea and cheddar salad. I added the tuna to make it for a main course.

The quantity is somewhat more than needed for a meal, but this seems to me to be the quantities of ingredients that go with a can of tuna. Mix the mayonnaise and mustard separately before mixing into the salad. Otherwise it’s hard to get the mustard evenly distributed. I fold in the peas last to keep from mashing them up.

Tuna, pea, and cheddar pasta salad

3/4 cup pasta shells
1–1/2 cups frozen peas
1 can tuna
3–4 ounces medium cheddar in 1/4-in cubes, about 1 cup
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

Make at least an hour before eating. Cook the shells, drain, and rinse with cold water. Bring the peas and water to the boil and cooked for 2 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water.

Flake the tuna. Put the tuna, cheese cubes, and pasta shells into a bowl. Mix mayonnaise and mustard together in a separate bowl. Mix the mayonnaise and mustard with the tuna, cheese, and shells. Fold in the peas. Chill before serving.

Shrimp and snow pea salad

Shrimp and snow pea salad

I had at least 2/3 of a package of snow peas left over after making some moo goo gai pan. Shrimp and snow peas make a combination I’ve always liked, so I thought this might work for a salad. But then I thought rather than putting those on a bed of lettuce or spinach like a traditional salad, since I had a lot of the snow peas, why not use them as the base for the salad.

The snow peas should be nice and crisp for this salad. Put them into boiling water for just one minute and immediately drain and rinse with cold water. The aim is to just take away the rawness while keeping the snow peas fresh and crisp.

I wanted everything coated with the ginger vinaigrette, so I tossed all of the vegetables with the dressing and then separately tossed the shrimp with the vinaigrette to put on the top. To have enough dressing to do this, I made a little more than I usually make for a salad.

Shrimp and snow pea salad

1/4 to 1/3 lb shrimp
snow peas
1/3 cup sliced water chestnuts
1/3 cup bamboo shoots
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
3 scallions, sliced, including lots of the green portions

4 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
2–1/2 teaspoons grated ginger or ginger paste
1 clove garlic, pressed
fresh ground pepper

Some time before serving, destring the snow peas. Put into a pot of boiling water for 1 minute. Drain and rinse with cold water. Cook the shrimp as well. Refrigerate.

Put the snow peas, water chestnuts, bamboo shoots, mushrooms, and the white parts of the scallions in a large bowl and put the shrimp in a smaller bowl. Whisk or shake in a small jar the oil, vinegar, ginger, garlic, and pepper. Pour the majority over the vegetables and the rest over the shrimp. Toss both to coat everything with the vinaigrette. Put the vegetables on the plate, add the shrimp, and top with the green parts of the scallions.

Red bean frittata

Red beans frittata

I really liked the red beans I made with the New Orleans tostada. These were the spicy New Orleans/Louisiana/southern-style beans for red beans and rice. So I wondered how they would work in a frittata. Bottom line–great!

The beans are made the same as before. Again, I am making the whole can even though I am using only about half in the frittata. I’ll eat the rest for lunch the next day. It helps to cook the beans for a long time. I did 40 or 45 minutes this time.

In making the frittata, it didn’t seem to make sense to try to mix the beans with the eggs. So I put a thin layer of the eggs in the pan and cooked them for a minute, put the beans on top, and poured the rest of the eggs over the beans.

Red beans frittata

1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 andouille sausage, chopped up
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup green pepper, diced
1 or 2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
chicken broth
fresh ground pepper
olive oil

3 eggs
oil

Brown the sausage briefly in the olive oil. Add the onions and green pepper and cook over medium heat until soft, adding the garlic for the last minute. Add the kidney beans, cayenne pepper, fresh ground pepper and about 1/2 cup chicken broth. Cook at a low simmer for at least half an hour, stirring occasionally and adding more chicken broth as needed to keep it from getting dry.

Put the eggs into a good-sized mixing bowl and beat just to mix them up. Add a bit of oil to a pan and let it get hot. Add a thin layer of the eggs to the pan. Turn the heat down to medium low and let it cook for a minute. Spoon the beans over the top of the eggs. Spoon or pour the remainder of the eggs over the beans. Cook this for about 4 more minutes to set the bottom and sides.

Preheat the broiler. When the 5 minutes cooking on the stove are up, place the pan under the broiler, about 6 to 7 inches below. Cook until the top is set and just starts to brown. This is about 1–1/2 to 2 minutes for me, but watch closely.

Remove from the broiler, loosen up the sides with a spatula if necessary, and slide the frittata out onto the serving plate.

Grape orange and chicken salad

Grape, orange, and chicken salad

I made this salad as a side salad, without the chicken, for a dinner. I really liked the combination and thought it would make a great main course salad with the addition of some chicken breast.

The honey-lime vinaigrette is a distinctive contribution to this salad that I think really makes it work. I find it always helps to heat the honey a bit in the microwave to make it thinner before adding to the dressing. And with honey, I always shake the dressing in a small jar to mix rather than trying to whisk it.

I think a mixture of greens with some texture works well for this salad. I used the Champs Elysees mix from Trader Joe’s with green leaf lettuce, frisee, radicchio, and carrots.

Grape, orange, and chicken salad

cooked chicken breast, sliced or cut into smaller pieces
red seedless grapes
mandarin oranges
sliced almonds
mixed greens

3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
fresh ground pepper

Arrange all of the ingredients for the salad on the plate. Shake in a small jar the oil, lime juice, honey, mustard, and pepper. Spoon over the salad.

Bacon, avocado, and tomato frittata

Bacon, avocado, and tomato frittata

This is a great sandwich combo. So why not a frittata?

I usually use a Roma tomato for a frittata. It’s about the right size. I cut it into quarter-inch slices and then cut those into small cubes just right for the frittata.

Bacon, avocado, and tomato frittata

4 slices bacon, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1/2–3/4 avocado, small pieces
1/2 cup tomato, small cubes

3 eggs
oil

Cook the bacon until crisp. Remove and drain on a paper towel. Wipe out the pan.

Put the eggs into a good-sized mixing bowl and beat just to mix them up. Add a bit of oil to the pan and let it get hot. Add a small amount of the eggs to the pan to set the bottom of the frittata to prevent sticking. Turn the heat down to medium low. Mix the bacon, avocado, and tomato into the eggs. Pour the mixture into the pan. Cook this for about 5 minutes to set the bottom and sides.

Preheat the broiler. When the 5 minutes cooking on the stove are up, place the pan under the broiler, about 6 to 7 inches below. Cook until the top is set and just starts to brown. This is about 1–1/2 to 2 minutes for me, but watch closely.

Remove from the broiler, loosen up the sides with a spatula if necessary, and slide the frittata out onto the serving plate.

Gyro tostada

Gyro tostada

I had a gyro recently. A tasty, different sort of sandwich. This got me thinking about making a gyro salad or frittata. I decided on a tostada. For the beans, given the Greek origin, I thought of garbanzo beans or chickpeas. But rather than hummus, which I had on my Greek tostada, I decided on the fresher alternative of simple chopped-up beans with a little bit of seasoning.

I found gyro meat at Trader Joe’s. It comes in a package with enough slices for 2 sandwiches, and I used a little less than half. It is possible to make it yourself, but I wouldn’t have gone to that much effort had I not been able to get it ready made.

For topping the tostada, tomatoes are usually included in gyros. Tatziki is another ingredient for gyros. I followed the approach I took with the Greek frittata. I put cucumbers on the frittata and then made a tatziki-like dressing by mixing yogurt with a lemon vinaigrette.

Gyro tostada

garbanzo beans/chickpeas
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 clove garlic, pressed
1/8 teaspoon paprika
salt
fresh ground pepper

baby spinach, chopped
gyro slices
tomatoes, small cubes
cucumber, small cubes
red onion, thinly sliced

2 corn tortillas.
oil

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 to 3 tablespoons plain Greek yogurt
1/2 clove garlic, pressed
1/2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh dill
fresh ground pepper

Rinse garbanzo beans. Put the beans, lemon juice, garlic, paprika, salt, and pepper into food processor and process very briefly to just chop up the beans.

Heat a thin layer of oil in a pan. When the oil is hot, put in a tortilla, cook for about 30 seconds on each side until it starts to crisp up. You want it a little crispy but not as hard as a tortilla chip. Repeat with the second tortilla.

Wipe out the pan. Put the slices of gyro meat in a hot pan for about 20 seconds on each side. Cut into smaller pieces for the tostada.

Put the tortillas side-by-side on a plate. Spread on a thin layer of the chopped garbanzo beans. Top with the spinach. Put the gyro meat, tomatoes, cucumber, and onion on the tostada. Whisk or shake in a small jar the oil, lemon juice, garlic, dill, and pepper. Add yogurt for desired consistency. Spoon the dressing over the top.