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Recipe: Cream Cheese Lemon Coconut Cookies

Recipe: Cream Cheese Lemon Coconut Cookies

Ingredients

4 oz full fat cream cheese, room temperature
½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice, plus zest from 1 lemon (about 1 tbsp)
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp Kosher salt
2 ½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
½ cup sweetened shredded coconut

Directions

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add in the sugar and mix on medium speed for 5 minutes until fluffy and lighter in color.

Mix in the egg, vanilla, zest, lemon juice, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. Mix for one minute until well combined, scarping down the bowl as needed. Mix in the coconut.

Turn the mixer to low and mix in the flour until just combined.

Cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 350˚ Fahrenheit with the racks in the middle.

Remove the dough from the refrigerator and place scoop 2 inches pieces of dough, rolling them into balls. Place onto the baking sheet 2 inches apart. Bake for 8-10 minuets or until the edges are lightly brown. Do not over bake.

Remove from the oven and let cool a few minutes before transferring to cooling racks to cool completely.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Boozy Frozen Lemonade

Recipe: Boozy Frozen Lemonade

Ingredients

½ cup tequila, vodka, gin or your favorite spirit
4 cups ice
lemon zest for topping

Directions

Combine the lemon simple syrup, liqueur and ice in a blender. Blend on the “smoothie” setting or until smooth.

Top with fresh lemon zest and serve immediately.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Lemon Simple Syrup

Recipe: Lemon Simple Syrup

Ingredients

4 lemons (1/2 cup lemon juice)
½ cup granulated sugar
zest from one lemon

Directions

Zest one of the lemons. Carefully remove the yellow outer skin of the lemon with a knife.

Juice the lemons discarding seeds. If you do not have fresh lemons you can use bottled unsweetened lemon juice.

In a small saucepan bring the lemon juice and sugar to a boil over medium-high heat. Continue to simmer for 10 minutes so the syrup can thicken a bit. Mix in the zest.

Transfer the lemon syrup to a heat proof bowl. Let the mixture sit at room temperature for 20 minutes until cool. Strain out all of the zest. Store in the fridge in a clean airtight glass jar until ready to use.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Greek Salad with Salmon and Creamy Feta Dressing

For a super healthy, delicious and gluten free meal you have gotta try this Greek Salad with Salmon and Creamy Feta Dressing recipe. The dressing can also be used as a dip for veggies or wings!

4 servings

–for the dressing
1/2 cup regular mayonnaise, such as Hellmann’s
1/2 cup sour cream
6 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
2 tbsp milk (skim, low fat or whole)
1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
2 tbsp chopped fresh dill
1/4 tsp dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
–for the salmon
1 tbsp olive oil
1 lb salmon filets, with skin
a few pinches each garlic salt and pepper
–for the salad
5 cups salad greens
1/2 cup grape tomatoes, chopped
1/2 english cucumber, cut into bite sized pieces
1/2 cup kalamata olives, halved cup
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
chopped fresh dill for garnish

For the dressing: Place all the salad dressing ingredients in a blender or food processor. Blend until thick and creamy. If desired, you can thin out with some water.
For the salmon: Heat the oil in a 12 inch skillet over medium high heat. Season both sides of the salmon with some garlic salt and pepper. When the pan is hot (you can test with a small splash of water) Place the salmon on the pan skin side down. Place a splatter guard over the salmon as it cooks. Cook the salmon about 5-6 minutes or until golden brown and crispy. Flip the salmon and cook for another 2-3 minutes or until done to your liking.
Assemble to salad: Layer the salad ingredients in a large bowl. Place the salmon over the top. Drizzle dressing and sprinkle some dill over the top. Serve immediately.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Grilled Avocado & Chimayo Shrimp Salad with Key Lime Dressing

Taste summer with this delish Grilled Avocado & Chimayo Shrimp Salad with Key Lime Dressing. This recipe is quick and easy to prepare.

2-4 servings

–for the salad
6 cups chopped romaine lettuce
1 cup sliced tomato
1/2 cup sliced red onion
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
–Chimayo grilled shrimp
2 cups medium uncooked shrimp, deveined, shell removed, tail on
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tbsp mild Chimayo spice powder
1/4 tsp garlic salt
–Grilled avocado
2 ripe avocado, halved & seed removed
lemon juice
olive oil
garlic salt
–Key Lime Dressing
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 tbsp freshly squeezed key lime juice
3 tbsp honey
sea salt
ground Black Pepper

Cut up the ingredients for the salad. Place in a large shallow bowl or platter.
Heat a grill or grill pan over medium high heat. In a clean bowl, toss the shrimp with the olive oil, chimayo and garlic salt. Grill the shrimp for about 5-7 minutes total time, flipping with a pair of tongs half way through. Remove the shrimp from the grill when they are opaque and place on top of the salad.
Using the same grill pan or grill: Rub the halved avocado with some olive oil, drizzle on some lemon juice. Sprinkle on some salt and pepper. Grill over medium high heat for about 4-5 minutes until you have grill marks. Slice and place the avocado on top of the salad. Drizzle with some dressing. Season with salt and pepper to taste and the rest of the dressing on the side.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Grilled Avocado & Chimayo Shrimp Salad with Key Lime Dressing

Taste summer with this delish Grilled Avocado & Chimayo Shrimp Salad with Key Lime Dressing. This recipe is quick and easy to prepare.

2-4 servings

–for the salad
6 cups chopped romaine lettuce
1 cup sliced tomato
1/2 cup sliced red onion
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
–Chimayo grilled shrimp
2 cups medium uncooked shrimp, deveined, shell removed, tail on
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tbsp mild Chimayo spice powder
1/4 tsp garlic salt
–Grilled avocado
2 ripe avocado, halved & seed removed
lemon juice
olive oil
garlic salt
–Key Lime Dressing
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 tbsp freshly squeezed key lime juice
3 tbsp honey
sea salt
ground Black Pepper

Cut up the ingredients for the salad. Place in a large shallow bowl or platter.
Heat a grill or grill pan over medium high heat. In a clean bowl, toss the shrimp with the olive oil, chimayo and garlic salt. Grill the shrimp for about 5-7 minutes total time, flipping with a pair of tongs half way through. Remove the shrimp from the grill when they are opaque and place on top of the salad.
Using the same grill pan or grill: Rub the halved avocado with some olive oil, drizzle on some lemon juice. Sprinkle on some salt and pepper. Grill over medium high heat for about 4-5 minutes until you have grill marks. Slice and place the avocado on top of the salad. Drizzle with some dressing. Season with salt and pepper to taste and the rest of the dressing on the side.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Quick & Easy Chicken Piccata

Ingredients

Directions

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Quick & Easy Chicken Piccata

This Quick & Easy Chicken Piccata tastes like the one you’ll find at your favorite Italian restaurant!

4 servings

4 (4-6 oz) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
3/4 cup low sodium chicken broth, divided
2 oz all-purpose flour, divided
2 tbsp unsalted butter, divided
2 tbsp olive oil, divided
1/4 cup shallots, finely chopped
lemon slices
4 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 ounces drained capers
3 tbsp finely chopped parsley

Have your butcher slice thin chicken breasts for you or you can pound them down yourself. Place the chicken breasts in-between two sheets of plastic wrap. Pound to 1/2 inch thickness with a meat mallet or the back of a pan. Season both sides lightly with salt and pepper.
Whisk together 1/4 cup of the stock in a bowl with 1 tsp flour.
Place the remaining flour in a shallow dish. Coat the chicken with the flour and shake off excess.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the butter and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a 12 inch cast iron (or any heavy bottomed skillet) over medium heat. Swirl the pan until the butter melts. Add the chicken and cook for 4 minutes on each side, until golden brown and cooked through. Remove the chicken from the pan and place on a clean plate, keep the chicken warm.
Add the rest of the olive oil, shallots and lemon slices to the pan. Sauce for a few minutes, until fragrant and softened. Add the garlic, sauté for one minute. Add the wine, cook down for a few minutes, until the wine has virtually evaporated. Scrape and stir to mix any browned bits into the sauce. Add the last 1/2 cup of the stock. Simmer the sauce for 5 minutes until it is reduced by half.
Stir in the broth, flour mixture. Cook for a minute. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the butter, lemon juice and capers. Plate the chicken and top with the sauce. Serve immediately.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Quick & Easy Chicken Piccata

This Quick & Easy Chicken Piccata tastes like the one you’ll find at your favorite Italian restaurant!

4 servings

4 (4-6 oz) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
3/4 cup low sodium chicken broth, divided
2 oz all-purpose flour, divided
2 tbsp unsalted butter, divided
2 tbsp olive oil, divided
1/4 cup shallots, finely chopped
lemon slices
4 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 ounces drained capers
3 tbsp finely chopped parsley

Have your butcher slice thin chicken breasts for you or you can pound them down yourself. Place the chicken breasts in-between two sheets of plastic wrap. Pound to 1/2 inch thickness with a meat mallet or the back of a pan. Season both sides lightly with salt and pepper.
Whisk together 1/4 cup of the stock in a bowl with 1 tsp flour.
Place the remaining flour in a shallow dish. Coat the chicken with the flour and shake off excess.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the butter and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a 12 inch cast iron (or any heavy bottomed skillet) over medium heat. Swirl the pan until the butter melts. Add the chicken and cook for 4 minutes on each side, until golden brown and cooked through. Remove the chicken from the pan and place on a clean plate, keep the chicken warm.
Add the rest of the olive oil, shallots and lemon slices to the pan. Sauce for a few minutes, until fragrant and softened. Add the garlic, sauté for one minute. Add the wine, cook down for a few minutes, until the wine has virtually evaporated. Scrape and stir to mix any browned bits into the sauce. Add the last 1/2 cup of the stock. Simmer the sauce for 5 minutes until it is reduced by half.
Stir in the broth, flour mixture. Cook for a minute. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the butter, lemon juice and capers. Plate the chicken and top with the sauce. Serve immediately.

~ Marla Meridith

Avgolemono Soup (Greek Egg, Lemon & Chicken Soup)

Ingredients

Directions

~ Marla Meridith

Avgolemono Soup (Greek Egg, Lemon & Chicken Soup)

This hearty Greek soup is a classic recipe, filled with great flavors and belly warming ingredients. There is no heavy cream in this soup, it gets it’s color from eggs whisked into it. Serve as an appetizer or main.

4-6 servings

–For the chicken broth
8 cups water
4 (2 1/2-3 lbs) chicken thighs, skin on
2 carrots, cut in half
2 celery stalks, cut in half
1 onion, skin on, quartered
2 tbsp black peppercorns
1 tbsp salt
–For the soup
3/4 cup dried orzo
4 large eggs
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp fresh dill, minced, plus more for garnish
sliced scallions for garnish

Bring all ingredients to a boil in a large soup pot or Dutch oven. Cover and simmer for 45 minutes. Skim off any white foam if needed. Remove the chicken from the pot and place in a large bowl. Strain the broth into another bowl. Discard solids. If the broth looks very fatty, continue to skim off with a spoon or use a fat separator.
Shred the chicken with your fingers. Discard skin and bones.
Cook the orzo until al dente. Rinse with cool water and set aside.
Make the Avgolemono: Whisk the eggs for 2 minutes until pale yellow. Whisk in the lemon juice. Temper the egg mixture with the 2 cups of broth small amount of the broth by whisking quickly. You do not want the eggs to cook. Slowly add 2 cups of the broths to the eggs, whisking constantly to create a creamy (not scrambled) texture.
Add the egg mixture to the soup pot stirring constantly. Heat on a low temperature and whisk constantly to incorporate the eggs. You do not want them to scramble. Add the chicken and the orzo into the pot or serve them on the side. Thin the soup out with water as needed. It will thicken as it cooks.
Serve immediately with garnishes.

~ Marla Meridith

Avgolemono Soup (Greek Egg, Lemon & Chicken Soup)

This hearty Greek soup is a classic recipe, filled with great flavors and belly warming ingredients. There is no heavy cream in this soup, it gets it’s color from eggs whisked into it. Serve as an appetizer or main.

4-6 servings

–For the chicken broth
8 cups water
4 (2 1/2-3 lbs) chicken thighs, skin on
2 carrots, cut in half
2 celery stalks, cut in half
1 onion, skin on, quartered
2 tbsp black peppercorns
1 tbsp salt
–For the soup
3/4 cup dried orzo
4 large eggs
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp fresh dill, minced, plus more for garnish
sliced scallions for garnish

Bring all ingredients to a boil in a large soup pot or Dutch oven. Cover and simmer for 45 minutes. Skim off any white foam if needed. Remove the chicken from the pot and place in a large bowl. Strain the broth into another bowl. Discard solids. If the broth looks very fatty, continue to skim off with a spoon or use a fat separator.
Shred the chicken with your fingers. Discard skin and bones.
Cook the orzo until al dente. Rinse with cool water and set aside.
Make the Avgolemono: Whisk the eggs for 2 minutes until pale yellow. Whisk in the lemon juice. Temper the egg mixture with the 2 cups of broth small amount of the broth by whisking quickly. You do not want the eggs to cook. Slowly add 2 cups of the broths to the eggs, whisking constantly to create a creamy (not scrambled) texture.
Add the egg mixture to the soup pot stirring constantly. Heat on a low temperature and whisk constantly to incorporate the eggs. You do not want them to scramble. Add the chicken and the orzo into the pot or serve them on the side. Thin the soup out with water as needed. It will thicken as it cooks.
Serve immediately with garnishes.

~ Marla Meridith