FRESH SUMMER RECIPE WITH LOCAL INGREDIENTS

Written and Photographed by Kaitlin Johnson of Market House LTD

While the summer months are hot, humid, and somewhat rainy, I thought “let’s make a light, fresh, yet filling lunchtime meal and share it with you.” There’s just something about freshly chopped veggies paired with grilled chicken and a fresh homemade lime sauce.

Let’s make some Mediterranean pita tacos and a chopped chickpea salad! These are incredibly easy to make, so for all of those who don’t enjoy cooking for long periods of time – this is for you!


Mediterranean Pita Tacos and Chopped Chickpea Salad

PITA TACO INGREDIENTS – 4 SERVINGS
• 2 cups grilled chicken cooked and diced
• 1 roma tomato diced
• 1/2 cucumber diced
• 1/2 red onion diced
• 1/2 cup red wine vinaigrette
• 1/2 cup feta cheese crumbled
• chopped cilantro for topping
• 4 whole wheat pitas

Lime Crema:
• 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
• 1 lime juice and zest
• 1/2 teaspoon salt

SALAD INGREDIENTS – 4 SERVINGS
• 2 cans chickpeas
• 1 red bell pepper chopped
• 1 cup chopped red onion
• 1 cup diced cucumber
• 1 cup halved grape tomatoes
• ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
• 1/4-1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
• ½ cup pitted kalamata olives
• Optional: 1/4 cup feta or dairy free feta

Dressing:
• 3 tbsp olive oil
• 1-2 tbsp red wine vinegar
• 2 tbsp lemon juice
• 2 cloves garlic minced
• ½ tsp sea salt or to taste
• ¼ tsp black pepper
• Optional: 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

Shopping for Ingredients

Wondering where I got the ingredients for this summer recipe locally? I went to a couple locations and gathered the information you need so you can support local, too!

Leduc Farmers Market

First, I went to the Leduc Farmers Market in the Leduc Rec Centre parking lot.

From Holden Colony I purchased tomatoes, but I substituted the Roma tomatoes for Cherry tomatoes. Next was lettuce (which I added since I love garden fresh lettuce), and bell peppers. If you’re not able to find all of the ingredients at one market, you can search the list of other Farmers’ Markets in the Region and shop around for other ingredients on your list!

Secondly, for pitas or flatbread I went to Cobs Bread in Leduc. They have Italian flatbread that work perfectly.

Jar’d Mercantile

Lastly, I specifically added something extra to my tacos. I added a spice called Kansas
City Style BBQ Spice I got from Jar’d Mercantile, in downtown Leduc. I admit it is an odd addition to a Mediterranean dish, but it was just enough seasoning to add a sweet
kick to the chicken I grilled.

Not only does Jar’d have spices but sauces, pickled veggies/preserves, and frozen
homemade foods you can also purchase conveniently online.


I shopped as locally as possible and used the fresh veggies I had in my fridge for
the rest. Not only does local shopping help the small businesses, but you get to
explore the Leduc Region and meet new people.

Let’s Get Cooking

What you want to start with is chopping all your veggies. Since they are served in
the salad and the tacos cold, you don’t have to worry about them losing heat like
the chicken. Most Mediterranean salads feature olives and yo may notice there is an
absence of them in photographs. I left them out of this because I’m not a fan of them,
but they do add extra flavour and saltiness if you do enjoy olives.

With the canned chickpeas, all you have to do is rinse them and add them to the bowl of chopped veggies once done.

Once the veggies are done, it’s time to make the dressing.

Whisk the olive oil, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, garlic, salt & pepper, and if you want the red pepper flakes for a little kick—whisk it all together in a smaller bowl. Set the dressing aside.

Grab the ingredients for the lime sauce. This sauce seals the deal with a few simple ingredients. Add the greek yogurt, zest of a lime, lime juice, and salt to a small bowl. This sauce is tart with the perfect balance of citrus tang. You can use bottled lime juice for this but to get the perfect sauce it is preferred to use a fresh lime.


Cook the chicken on the BBQ or grill it in a pan on the stove with some olive oil. I cooked my chicken on a pan.

Next, add either salt and pepper as seasoning on the chicken while it cooks, OR add the Kansas City Style BBQ Spice as I did.

If pan frying/grilling: Once the chicken is cooked through, set the heat on high and add a drizzle of oil to the pan to brown the sides or the chicken.

After you remove the chicken add the tomatoes, cucumber, red onion, feta cheese, and chicken to a bowl and toss with the red wine vinaigrette.

Add the veggie bowl and chicken mixture to your plated pita/flatbread.

Add salad dressing to your salad.

The last step is to drizzle or douse your pita taco in the lime crema sauce and sprinkle with cilantro (this can be removed if you prefer).

If you are like me and usually create leftovers when cooking, the salad and taco mixture can last up to 5 days in the fridge. These recipes are easy to toss together in a matter of minutes to have a great and fulfilling lunch on a hot summer day.

Enjoy!
Kaitlin


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