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Going Greek--Veggie Gyros

Posted Feb 01 2011 10:18pm
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One of the ways I get through winter is by tempting my taste buds with exotic flavors that help me forget about the blistery weather outside.  There is something about foreign food that makes me feel like my meal is an experience, not just something to fill me up.

I'm pretty certain these recipes are a far cry from authentic Greek food and I am not claiming to be an expert on Greek cuisine.  I've never been to Greece, so I don't have anything to compare it to anyway!

The Veggie Gyros are a Kitchy Mama Original made on the spot because I was saving our Chicken for dinner and had extra veggies on hand.  The Ziti is inspired by a Rachel Ray Recipe , but I have made several changes, adapting it to ingredients we frequently have on hand.

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This is the first time in my adult life that I have a flexible schedule that allows me to be home to cook all our meals. When I was working longer hours away from home, I could pretty much handle breakfasts and dinners, but it seemed like we never had anything to eat for lunch.  One advantage to meal planning is that you can use your dinner preparation the night before to prep for the next day's breakfast and lunch so that most of the labor intensive work is already done when it is time to eat.

For instance, in this meal plan, you could easily make the Meusli for breakfast, the cucumber-yogurt sauce and the vegetables for the gyros the night before either while you are cooking dinner or as you are cleaning up from dinner.  I also find it easier to delegate specific tasks to others when I have a plan--Ladies--that's code for extra help in the kitchen!

If you are looking for a great vegetarian meal idea--try these Veggie Gyros.  I used the veggies I had on hand, but you could definitely switch things up to include your favorites.

Here is the Recipe for Vegetarian Gyros Target Coupons: 10% Extra Cash Back (was 4% Cash Back)
Ingredients 1 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 cup White Mushroom, Raw
1 Whole Yellow Bell Pepper
2 large Carrot, Raw
1 medium Onion, Sweet
1 tsp Onion Powder
1 Garlic Clove
2 tsp Oregano, Dried
1/2 tsp Marjoram, Dried (optional)
1/2 tsp Basil, Dried

Cucumber Yogurt Sauce
1 cup Lowfat Plain
1 cup Peeled Cucumber
2 tbsp Onions
1 Raw Clove
1 tsp Sugar or 1/4 tsp Truvia (Stevia)

1 Tomato, chopped
4 Pitas (I used Flax, Oat Bran & Whole Wheat Flour Pita Bread)

Directions:For the Cucumber-Yogurt Sauce ( tzatziki in Greek)Seed and finely chop about half a medium cucumber. Cucumbers are mostly water, so unless you like a watery sauce transfer the cucumbers to a strainer and salt. The salt helps bring out the moisture in the cucumbers. Allow cucumber to drain for about five minutes. Then with a towel, press out additional moisture. Mince a garlic clove and finely chop 1 tablespoon of onion. In a small bowl mix onion and garlic with plain yogurt. Add sugar and black pepper and cucumber after it has been drained.
Heat oil in non-stick skillet. Add carrots and onions and cook for about five minutes on medium to medium high before adding bell pepper and mushrooms. Add seasonings to vegetables and cook until vegetables are tender, but not mushy--about 15-20 minutes.
Warm pitas.  You can keep them from getting too toasty by wrapping them in foil and heating them in a 400 degree oven for about 8-10 minutes.  It may take longer if they are frozen.
Fill pitas with generous portion of veggie mix and cucumber sauce. Add chopped tomatoes, if desired.

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Round out your Greek Feast with this 1600 Calorie Meal Plan:

Breakfast::320 Calories
1 cup Greek Yogurt with Stevia 1 chopped apple Homemade Muesli
Snack: 125 Calories5 Triscuit crackerswith Tomatoes andReduced Fat Feta Cheese
Lunch: 414 Calories Vegetarian Gyros 1 Cup Red Grapes
Snack: 111 CaloriesDove Chocolate Miniatures (3)Not Greek, but who cares---its chocolate!
Dinner: 627 Calories Greek Chicken Ziti Green Beans in Tomato Sauce
Total Calories: 1598

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