Thursday, February 2, 2012

Greek Chicken Skewers with Tzatziki Sauce

I absolutely love Mediterranean food and Greek cuisine is not only delicious, it’s super healthy. A Wall Street Journal article reported that a diet high in Mediterranean foods is linked to lower risks of obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular and heart disease, as well as cancer…AND it tastes amazing? Sold!

In my old life…ahem, you know 6 months ago when I was 39…I thought so differently about food. Don’t get me wrong, obviously I still LOVE it, but since I started on my journey, I have a new relationship with it. Not only do I look for tasty foods that are actually worth eating, but I also want to eat things that are GOOD for my health. I also viewed special events like the Super Bowl as another day to go crazy and eat what I want…but when I thought about it, I really had lots of days like that: Thanksgiving, Christmas…Groundhog Day…Sunday…

So, in my new life, I still want to enjoy food, but I am also trying to be smart about it. Here’s a great recipe to enjoy this weekend for the big game. Make it ahead and grill them up when your guests arrive – they are pretty and most importantly: yummy! And who doesn’t love meat on a stick??

Ingredients:
1 package (approx. 1 ½ lbs) boneless chicken breast or use chicken tenders

Chicken Marinade:
1 T minced garlic
½ cup lemon juice
½ cup extra virgin olive oil (this is strictly for marinade and you will pour most of it off)
1 T dried oregano
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Whisk all of the marinade ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside. Slice chicken into strips and place into a gallon-size plastic bag or glass container. Pour the marinade over the chicken, be sure to work the marinade all throughout the chicken, and seal, releasing as much air as you can. Refrigerate for 4 hours or more.

(Serves 4/170 Calories per two skewers)

Note: If you plan to use wooden skewers, be sure to soak them in water for a few hours. I usually just throw mine in a plastic bag with a little bit of water and let it sit while the marinade is marinading...

Tzatziki Sauce
6 ounces plain fat free Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
1 teaspoon minced garlic

Mix all of the ingredients together in a small bowl, cover with wrap and chill for 4 hours.

(27 calories/serving: approx. 3 T)

When ready to cook the chicken, preheat grill to medium heat and lightly oil the grates; I use a grill spray to keep from sticking. Skewer the strips by threading the skewer, and discard any remaining marinade. Place chicken on the grill and cook for about 5 minutes per side, depending on how large your skewers are. Try turning over only once and be sure to get those great grill marks seared on there. Grill chicken until no longer pink.

Serve with Tzatziki sauce for dipping!

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