Southwestern Turkey Burgers

Winter is back with a vengeance!  Mother nature does like to mess with us.  Offices were closed so I got a snow day.  It was lovely to watch the snow come down in the comfort of home.  It also allowed me to catch up with some projects I’m working on.  There is a possibility I might have to have hand surgery soon so all my knitting and crocheting projects need to get done.  Which might guarantee I won’t need surgery!  Fingers crossed.

We are also getting ready for our exchange student to come this weekend.  She has actually been here since August but they way they do it now is the student spends three months with a host family then moves on to another one.  So now it’s our turn. She is from Denmark and I’m looking forward to trying out recipes from there.  Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.  I am looking into the Danish rye breads to give that a go.

Before winter returned we had some fabulous warm weather which meant lighter meals.  I do miss salads.  I thought it would be fun to do turkey burgers, not realising how mushy the ground turkey can be to work with.  Very sticky!  But if you can get past that you can have a great meal.

Southwestern turkey burgers 1 2017

To make the burgers I mixed a pound of ground turkey meat with half a cup of freshly grated cheddar cheese, a few splashes of hot sauce, 1-2 tablespoons of chili powder, and a teaspoon of ground cumin.  Season with sea salt and pepper.  Mix and form into burgers.  Heat a couple of tablespoons of olive oil. Brown both sides.

Southwestern turkey burger 2 2017

Finish off in the oven at 350F/175C.  Finely chop scallions, peppers, garlic, and mushrooms.  Add them to the skillet with 1-2 cups of frozen corn.  Add 1-2 tablespoons of chili powder, a teaspoon of ground cumin, 1-2 tablespoons of lime juice, sea salt and pepper, finish with fresh cilantro.

Southwestern turkey burger 3 2017

As the burgers finish cooking top with pepper jack cheese to melt.  Serve over mixed lettuce greens and top with the veg mix.  We also cooked up some sweet potato fries.

Southwestern turkey burger 4 2017

An easy dinner to put together when you want loads of flavour on a busy night.

 

 

 

BBQ Burgers and Family Time

Every summer there is nearly a month when the kids are gone.  A bit hard on the parents but it means the kids are off on adventures.  They do a two week overnight camp and then we usually get them for a couple of days then they are off to Florida to see grandparents with their mother and stepfather.

While we get a break from the usual back and forth of getting the kids round we miss them like crazy.  We picked them up from camp Friday evening and they had so many stories to tell.  It was non stop and it was fabulous.  But they were looking forward to home cooked food.

Our daughter must have missed the kitchen as she made breakfast each morning this weekend and baked cookies.  Yesterday morning she kicked us out and set the table with flowers and candles.  She really loves going all out.

When we picked them up they mentioned they were sick of cheeseburgers.  Shoot, as that was what I was making for last night!  Our daughter said oh we love your burgers so that’s ok.  Phew!

It was time for something different so I thought I would make BBQ burgers.  Our poblanos are coming in and I wanted to use them.  Our garden has been a struggle this year but our peppers are doing us proud.  I see a lot of hot pepper jelly in our future.  Unfortunately we’ve used up all our Peach BBQ sauce I had made so I had to use, gasp, store bought.  Peaches are showing up in the shops now so it is on my list to make another batch.

BBQ Burgers 1 2015

I had a pound of ground beef which is more than enough for the four of us.  The only issue is it’s impossible to find decent buns that aren’t enormous.  So the buns tend to dwarf the burger.  I think a quarter pound of meat is more than enough but I think I’m in the minority in this country.  My husband and I went without the bun.  In a bowl add the meat.  Mince 2-3 cloves of garlic and add that with a few teaspoons of fresh thyme.  I didn’t have enough cheddar to do slices on top but I did have enough to grate for the actual burger.  The amount I added was about a quarter of the meat in volume.  Then add a few tablespoons of BBQ.  Mix well and form into patties.  Set aside.  Cook up several rashers of streaky bacon and set that aside as well.

BBQ Burgers 3 2015

My husband brought home some fresh corn yesterday.  So exciting!  I love having them grilled.  Very easy to do, just soak for about 20 minutes in water.  Then grill for 5 minutes on each side until cooked through.  When these were halfway cooked I added the burgers.

BBQ Burgers 2 2015

Once you flip them add sliced onion that have been prepped with olive oil and seasoned with sea salt and pepper.  Add the poblanos after deseeding them.  You want the peppers to blister a little but don’t go crazy.  You want to grill the onions so they have the grill marks but aren’t burnt. When the burgers are almost done add slices of cheddar or jarlsberg to the burgers to melt.

BBQ Burgers 4 2015

Layer with BBQ sauce, bacon, onion, and pepper.  Butter up that corn and enjoy!  My husband did up some sweet potato and regular potato chips (fries) to round out the meal.  I was stuffed.  I think a bun would have sent me over the edge.  I didn’t even have room for ice cream!

I Love the Colours of Summer Food!

We were spoilt when we were in England with the summer weather. My kind of summer weather where I don’t feel like I’m about to melt and I start to wonder if there is room in the fridge for me.  My husband heard a report on the BBC talking about how muggy the weather was.  Ha! I’ll take their version over the mugginess we get here any day of the week.  It was fabulous sleeping weather.  Right now there is a wall of humidity waiting for us just outside the door.  Ugh.  Thank goodness for A/C.

Of course this time of year comfort food is right out the window.  At least the heavy stick to your ribs kind.  Yesterday I reached back to one of my earlier cookbooks that I got when I moved out on my own to make a corn dish that is packed with flavour but is light and easy to make.  I drew inspiration from “Skillet Suppers” by Andrea Chesman.  It was published back in 1994.  I haven’t opened it in years so it was time to dust it off.  This is my version of their Cajun Macque Choux.  Their version has evaporated milk and prawns.  I took out the milk and replaced the prawns with chicken.

I also love this dish for all the bright colours of the ingredients.

Corn bacon 2 2014

This is a one skillet meal which makes for very easy clean up.  Chop about 5-6 slices of streaky bacon depending on how thick they are and cube a breast of chicken.

Corn bacon 1 2014

Start cooking the bacon in the skillet to render the fat.  Once it’s about half way cooked add the chicken in. 

Corn bacon 3 2014

Thinly slice a quarter of a red onion and add it to the bacon and chicken.  When the onion begins to soften add the chopped jalapeno and a cup of chopped pepper.  Any colour you wish.  Stir well as this cooks.

Corn bacon 4 2014

Add about 10oz of frozen corn, 1/3 – 1/2 cup of chopped scallion, and a teaspoon or so of fresh thyme. Have this on medium heat.

Corn bacon 5 2014

Once the corn is about half way cooked add a handful of chopped fresh basil and a chopped tomato.  I used about a cups worth of tomato.

Corn bacon 6 2014

Season with salt, black pepper, and white pepper.  Stir well and cook until the corn and chicken are finished. 

Corn bacon 7 2014

This is a very simple but flavourful dish.  I only used one jalapeno in this dish but you could use hotter peppers or more hot peppers if you wish.  My son and I liked the mild heat in this dish but my husband would have loved more omph.  🙂 

 

Quesadillas

Sometimes we don’t feel like cooking.  Gasp!  I know, hard to imagine.  Sometimes we just want the food fairy to show up for us.  She doesn’t but it’s good there are a few meals that are super easy and delicious to make.  Quesadillas are one of them.

I dice up some onions, peppers, and mushrooms and saute in some olive oil.

I add a bit of lime juice, chilli pepper, cumin, and adobe seasoning.  I then toss in some frozen corn.  I cook it until corn is cooked.

I take a tortilla and top with the veg mixture.  I liberally apply cheese (world would not be a good place without cheese!) and add another tortilla on top.  I place in the toaster oven and toast until the cheese is melted.

I use a pizza cutter to slice and then it is ready to serve.  Add sour cream and salsa and you have a filling, quick meal that is really tasty.  This only took about 20 minutes to make.

Filet Mignon with Sauteed Mushrooms and Onions

Occasionally as a special treat we’ll cook up some Filet Mignon when it’s just the two of us.  And we did this the other night.  I do wish the grocery store had all natural Filet Mignon but they can’t get the antibiotic/hormone free cuts.  They usually have a small selection of beef that is all natural which is good.

I start off by seasoning the meat with salt and pepper then I set aside while the oven heats up the broiler.

For cuts this thick we usually do 5 minutes a side and it comes out medium rare which is what we prefer.  I like mine a little rarer than Rich but this usually works for both of us.

Then I slice some onions and mushrooms to top the beef.  I decided to try something a little different.  I  started with olive oil then I added a bit of the veg bouillon I like to use with some cognac to make a sauce.  I did add a bit of water as well.  This allowed the mushrooms to brown a bit when it was time to serve. I do need to adjust the next time I make it as all the flavours were there but because it reduced so much it wasn’t really a sauce.

Once the meat was cooked I let it rest a few minutes while I finished the rest of the meal.  I served this with corn and potatoes.  This took me less than 30 minutes to make and it is a real treat for us.

Chicken Cordon Bleu with Grilled Corn

My daughter had a friend sleep over so she got to decide what was for dinner.  Our kids really like Chicken Cordon Bleu but I really don’t like the frozen stuff you get that takes 25 minutes or so to bake.  Too much junk that is hard to pronounce in the ingredients.  The way we make it takes about 20 minutes to prep and cook and it is tastier!

For a family of four I do the following:

2 chicken breasts divided lengthwise down the center

1-2 slices of ham per serving

1-2 slices of Jarlsberg per serving

1 egg beaten

Panko bread crumbs

I place the ham and cheese on one half of the chicken and fold over.  I then dip it in the egg and then the Panko bread crumbs.  I pan fry in olive oil to brown both sides.  I usually finish off in the toaster oven at about 375 F.

Always soak the corn before grilling.  Feel free to take off a few layers of the husk and the silk but it’s not necessary.  You want to soak them for at least 10 minutes.

Once on the grill turn every 5 minutes.  The hotter the grill the more roasted the corn will be.  And sometimes it starts on fire!  Blow it out and carry on.  🙂

All in all this is a very quick and easy meal to make and the kids love it.