Lemony Chicken with Homemade Pita and Tzatziki Salad: #198 of 1000 Sustainable Food Experiments

June means summer is almost here, and the weather is good enough to fire up the barbecue. How about a tangy lemon garlic marinade and a bright cucumber mint salad to go with your freshly baked pita bread? Sounds good to me! You’re all invited for dinner. 🙂

This is part of our 1,000 Food Experiments to create sustainable meals for our family and hopefully yours.

Ingredients ($23 total)

Chicken and marinade:
2 pounds organic chicken breast – $11.98
6 tbsp olive oil – $0.60
3 tbsp soy ginger sauce or teriyaki sauce – $0.46
1 tsp garlic powder – $0.28
2 tbsp cumin – $1.40
2 lemons, juiced – $0.40

Salad:
2 cucumbers, diced – $2.58
2 tomatoes, diced – $1.98
1/4 cup yogurt (unsweetened almond milk yogurt works great) – $0.31
5-7 leaves mint, chopped up – $0.96
1 lemon, juiced – $0.20
1/2 tsp garlic powder – $0.14
Salt and pepper to taste

Pita:
1 tbsp active dry yeast – $0.50
1 tsp brown sugar – $0.01
1 cup hottest tap water – free
1/4 cup whole wheat flour – $0.04
2 1/2 cups flour – $0.40
1 tsp salt – $0.05
2 tbsp olive oil – $0.20

Directions

1. Arrange the chicken breasts in a glass dish and pour all the marinade ingredients over top. Turn the chicken breasts over a few times to coat evenly, then cover and let the chicken rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

Put all the salad ingredients in a bowl and mix well to combine. Cover and let rest in the fridge until ready to serve.

2. Make the dough: in a small non-metal bowl, gently mix the yeast, brown sugar, and water. Let it sit for 5 minutes to form a thick foam on top – this is how you know the yeast is active and ready to go.

Then mix in the whole wheat flour and 1/4 cup of the white flour, and stir well. Let it sit uncovered in a warm place for about 15 minutes. It will get nice and frothy.

Add the rest of the flour, salt, and olive oil, and stir with a wooden spoon to bring it together into a ball of dough. Knead well for 5 minutes until the dough gets nice and smooth. Only add more flour if it gets so sticky that it won’t come off your fingers.

Put the dough in a large metal bowl, cover with cling wrap, and let it rise in a warm place for about 1 hour until it has doubled.

After it has risen, punch down the dough and divide it into 8 balls. Roll each ball out on a lightly floured surface, and cook it like a pancake on an un-greased frying pan over medium heat. When the first side has nice bubbles on it (2-3 minutes), flip the pita over with a spatula and cook the other side for 2-3 more minutes until it has nice brown spots all over it. Repeat with the remaining balls of dough.

3. Store your pitas on a plate wrapped in a clean dish towel to keep them warm and fresh. Meanwhile, BBQ the chicken breasts at 350F, turning occasionally, until you can slice through them and there is no more pink inside.

Serve the pita with 1/2 chicken breast and a refreshing bowl of salad on the side. Feel free to dip the pita in the salad juices for an extra treat. Hope you enjoy this delicious, Greek-inspired dinner!

Sustainability Score (explained here)

  • Time to make: 1 = >3 hours
  • Servings: 2 = 4-6 servings
  • Cost per serving: 3 = <$5
  • Deliciousness:  3 = when are we having this again?
  • Environmental impact: 2 = moderate impact (chicken)
  • Nutritional value: 3 = optimal nutrition
  • TOTAL: 14/18

If any of you amazing home chefs tried it, or have other recipes you’d like us to experiment with, please let me know. Wishing you and your family a healthy, happy day!

Quick Garbanzo Cucumber Salad: #121 of 1000 Sustainable Food Experiments

A bright, lively and very simple salad that will make your whole body smile. This was inspired by the Forks Over Knives plant-based eating movement. I’m not normally a fan of cucumbers but I polished off a second helping of this! We ate it for dinner with sauteed sesame spinach and steamed rice.

This is part of our 1,000 Food Experiments to create sustainable meals for our family and hopefully yours.

Ingredients ($5 total)

2 cans garbanzo beans, drained – $1.98
2 cucumbers, diced – $2.49
2 lemons, juiced – $0.40
1/2 tsp paprika – $0.14
Sprig of mint, chopped up – free from the farm
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

1. In a medium bowl, mix all the ingredients except the olive oil. Be sure to mix well. It will make a thick mixture.

2. Add the lemon juice, paprika, mint, salt and pepper. Mix to combine.

3. And that’s it! Serve with any side dishes, like sauteed sesame spinach and rice.

Sustainability Score (explained here)

  • Time to make: 3 = <1 hour
  • Servings: 2 = 4-6 servings
  • Cost per person: 3 = <$5
  • Deliciousness: 3 = when are we having this again?
  • Environmental impact: 3 = minimal damage
  • Nutritional value: 3 = optimal nutrition
  • TOTAL: 17/18

If you tried it, please let me know how it came out for you. Wishing you and your family a healthy, happy day!

Grandma’s Bread and Butter Pickles: #50 of 1000 Sustainable Food Experiments

Whenever I had lunch at my British Grandma’s house, there was always a dish of bread and butter pickles on the table. They’re sweet, tangy, crunchy, and a delicious accompaniment to just about anything you might have for lunch. I tried making them recently and they came out great!

This is part of our 1,000 Food Experiments to create sustainable meals for our family and hopefully yours.

Ingredients ($6 total)

1 lb small Persian cucumbers (about 5) – $2.29
2 tbsp salt – $0.50
1 cup white sugar – $0.88
1/2 cup brown sugar – $0.52
1 cup white vinegar – $0.02
1/2 cup rice vinegar – $1.32
1 tsp dijon mustard – $0.08
1/2 tsp turmeric – $0.14

Directions

1. Slice the cucumbers into chunky slices, not too thin, with a serrated edge knife to give them a slightly wavy edge. Add the salt to the sliced cucumbers in a medium bowl, and mix to coat thoroughly. Cover and let sit in the fridge for 1-2 hours.

2. Mix the vinegars, sugars, mustard, and turmeric in a pot. Bring to a boil then remove from heat. Whisk to dissolve sugar, then pour over the cucumbers. Rest at room temperature for 1 hour, then cover and put in the fridge overnight.

3. Taste your pickles the next day! Store in a tightly sealed jar and they will keep in the fridge for a few weeks (if they last that long). 

Sustainability Score (explained here)

  • Time to make: 1 = 3+ hours
  • Servings:  3 = >6 servings
  • Cost per person (prices based on Trader Joe’s/Costco): 3 = <$5
  • Deliciousness: 2 = decent meal
  • Environmental impact: 2 = moderate impact
  • Nutritional value: 3 = optimal nutrition
  • TOTAL: 14/18

If you tried it, please let me know how it came out for you. Wishing you and your family a healthy, happy day!