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Food

Heart Healthy Recipes with Greek Flavor

February 14, 2022

February is Heart Health Month and while many factors can help us keep our hearts healthy, what we eat plays a major role. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, healthy meals and snacks can help prevent heart disease and its complications. Eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables and fewer processed foods are not only recommended for heart health, but are also key components of the Greek diet. Enjoy the following recipes to help keep your heart healthy.

 

Salmon and Pasta

 

1 package penne whole grain pasta

2 tablespoons minced shallot

Baked salmon, recipe follows

1-2 tablespoons Greek extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling

 

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add penne and cook, stirring occasionally, according to the package directions. Drain well and place in a serving bowl. Add the shallot and stir together. Top with the cooked salmon. Drizzle with olive oil and serve immediately.

 

Baked Salmon

 

1 pound salmon fillets, preferably Alaskan wild-caught

5 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1/3 cup Greek extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons chopped, fresh dill

1/2 teaspoon dry mustard powder

1/4 teaspoon Greek sea salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Rinse salmon in cool water and pat dry with paper towels, place in a 2-inch deep baking dish and set aside. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, oil, dill, mustard powder, salt and pepper, and pour over the salmon. Bake for 25 minutes or until the fish flakes easily with a fork. Serve with pasta, a salad, or the lightly cooked greens of your choice.

 

Salad with Cucumbers and Feta

Radishes. Photo by Dim Hou, via Unsplash

2 bunches small radishes, thinly sliced

3 medium cucumbers, thinly sliced

1 bunch fresh chives cut into one-inch pieces

1 bunch fresh dill, stems removed

1/2 cup fresh mint leaves (about 1 small bunch)

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup Greek extra virgin olive oil

Greek sea salt and freshly ground pepper

3 ounces feta, Dodonis, crumbled

1 cup walnuts, chopped

 

Place the thinly sliced radishes and cucumbers in a salad bowl. Add the chives, dill and mint. Place the olive oil and lemon juice in a small jar with a screw top, season with salt and pepper to taste, close the jar securely and shake to make the dressing. Just before serving, season the salad with a pinch of salt and add about 3 to 4 tablespoons of the dressing. Toss well to combine. Add the crumbled feta and toss gently to combine. Add a tablespoon more of the dressing, if needed, top with chopped walnuts, and serve immediately.

 

Greek Kale Salad with Chicken

Kale. Photo by Laura Johnston, via Unsplash

2 tablespoons Greek extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 teaspoon Greek dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon Greek sea salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

4 cups chopped kale

1 1/2 cups shredded cooked chicken

1 cup cooked quinoa or bulgur wheat

1/4 cup sliced jarred roasted red peppers

1 ounce crumbled feta, Dodonis

 

In a large bowl, stir together the olive oil, vinegar, oregano, salt and pepper. Add the kale, chicken, quinoa or bulgur, and roasted peppers and toss to coat completely. Top with feta. Serve immediately.

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