Cooking at Home: Mediterranean ‘Tacos’ a la Pumpkin Seed Greek Kale Salad

with Chef Robert Larios
Photography by Patricia M. Larios

Here is a quick and easy dish that combines Mediterranean tastes with tacos of Mexico. Instead of tortillas, lavash flatbreads are used. Instead of refried beans, we use hummus, and we use sun-dried tomato strips instead of freshly diced tomatoes. The Mediterranean vinaigrette and the hummus can be store bought, but if you have the time, I encourage you to make them at home. I am such a fan of toasted pumpkin seeds that I call for it in this recipe. It adds a wonderful texture.

¡Buen provecho!



RECIPE: Cooking at Home

Mediterranean ‘Tacos’ a la
Pumpkin Seed Greek Kale Salad

Yields2 Servings

 1 oz ounce sun-dried tomato strips (not in oil)
 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 6 ounces each) (optional)
 3 oz ounces organic shredded kale or other leafy greens
 Mediterranean vinaigrette (store-bought is okay, or make it yourself, using extra virgin olive oil; red wine vinegar; champagne vinegar; sun-dried tomatoes; garlic; dried oregano; and Dijon mustard)
 3 tbsp crumbled feta
 4 round whole grain lavash flatbreads
 ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
 1 can hummus (store-bought is okay, or make it yourself: chickpeas; water; extra virgin olive oil; tahini; lemon juice; kosher salt; garlic; cumin; and coriander)

1

Step 1
Soak the sun-dried tomatoes.
In a small bowl, soak the sun-dried tomatoes in very hot tap water until softened, about 10 minutes. Drain and pat dry.

2

Step 2
Prep and cook the chicken.
Pat the chicken dry with a paper towel; season generously with salt and pepper. In a large frying pan over medium-high heat, warm 2 to 3 teaspoons oil until hot but not smoking. Add the chicken and cook, turning occasionally, until lightly browned and cooked through, 4 to 6 minutes per side for breasts. Transfer to a cutting board to cool slightly. Cut the chicken crosswise into quarter-inch-thick slices. While the chicken is cooking and cooling, prepare the salad and flatbreads.

3

Step 3
Make the kale salad.
In a large bowl, combine the kale with the Mediterranean vinaigrette and 2 teaspoons oil, season with salt and pepper, and gently massage the leaves. Add the sun-dried tomatoes and feta, and pumpkin seeds, season to taste with salt and pepper, and toss to combine.

4

Step 4
Toast the flatbreads; assemble the “tacos.”
On the stovetop directly over a flame, or in a dry medium frying pan over medium heat, warm the flatbreads, turning once, until lightly toasted, about 30 seconds per side. Alternatively, toast them in a toaster oven.

5

Step 5
Spoon the hummus evenly over the flatbreads, leaving a half-inch border around the edges. Top with the chicken and kale salad. Fold up to form “tacos.”

Serve: Transfer the flatbread “tacos” to individual plates and serve any remaining kale salad on the side.

Ingredients

 1 oz ounce sun-dried tomato strips (not in oil)
 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 6 ounces each) (optional)
 3 oz ounces organic shredded kale or other leafy greens
 Mediterranean vinaigrette (store-bought is okay, or make it yourself, using extra virgin olive oil; red wine vinegar; champagne vinegar; sun-dried tomatoes; garlic; dried oregano; and Dijon mustard)
 3 tbsp crumbled feta
 4 round whole grain lavash flatbreads
 ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
 1 can hummus (store-bought is okay, or make it yourself: chickpeas; water; extra virgin olive oil; tahini; lemon juice; kosher salt; garlic; cumin; and coriander)

Directions

1

Step 1
Soak the sun-dried tomatoes.
In a small bowl, soak the sun-dried tomatoes in very hot tap water until softened, about 10 minutes. Drain and pat dry.

2

Step 2
Prep and cook the chicken.
Pat the chicken dry with a paper towel; season generously with salt and pepper. In a large frying pan over medium-high heat, warm 2 to 3 teaspoons oil until hot but not smoking. Add the chicken and cook, turning occasionally, until lightly browned and cooked through, 4 to 6 minutes per side for breasts. Transfer to a cutting board to cool slightly. Cut the chicken crosswise into quarter-inch-thick slices. While the chicken is cooking and cooling, prepare the salad and flatbreads.

3

Step 3
Make the kale salad.
In a large bowl, combine the kale with the Mediterranean vinaigrette and 2 teaspoons oil, season with salt and pepper, and gently massage the leaves. Add the sun-dried tomatoes and feta, and pumpkin seeds, season to taste with salt and pepper, and toss to combine.

4

Step 4
Toast the flatbreads; assemble the “tacos.”
On the stovetop directly over a flame, or in a dry medium frying pan over medium heat, warm the flatbreads, turning once, until lightly toasted, about 30 seconds per side. Alternatively, toast them in a toaster oven.

5

Step 5
Spoon the hummus evenly over the flatbreads, leaving a half-inch border around the edges. Top with the chicken and kale salad. Fold up to form “tacos.”

Serve: Transfer the flatbread “tacos” to individual plates and serve any remaining kale salad on the side.

Mediterranean ‘Tacos’ a la Pumpkin Seed Greek Kale Salad

Food Lover’s Dictionary

Pumpkin Seeds aka Pepitas [puh-PEE-tahs]: These edible pumpkin seeds are a popular ingredient in Mexican cooking. With their white hull removed, they are a medium-dark green and have a deliciously delicate flavor, which is even better when the seeds are roasted and salted. Pepitas are sold salted, roasted and raw, and with or without hulls. They’re available in health-food stores, Mexican markets and many supermarkets.

Bibliography: Copyright Barron’s Educational Services, Inc. 2009, adapted from The New Food Lover’s Companion, 2007, by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst.


Food Quote: “I don’t see how a pumpkin patch could be more sincere than this one.”

It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown

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