Chipotle-adobo turkey burgers

These burgers are going to become a regular recipe that I make. They are smokey and a little spicy and oh-so-flavorful.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 pound ground turkey
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 large chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, diced
  • 2 tsp adobo sauce
  • 1/8 cup plus 2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
  • 4 tablespoons plain greek yogurt
  • juice of one lime
  • 8 slices turkey bacon, cooked
  • queso fresco(optional)
  • cheddar cheese(optional)

In a bowl, combine garlic, salt, pepper, chipotle pepper, adobo sauce, 1/8 cup of cilantro and 4 slices of turkey bacon(crumbled).

Fold this mixture into the ground turkey until evenly dispursed. 

Form 4 large patties with the turkey meat.

Cook over medium to medium-high heat until no longer pink in the middle. During last few minutes of cooking, add cheese to melt it.

While burgers are cooking, combine yogurt, remaining cilantro and lime juice in a bowl. Set to the side.

When burgers are done cooking, place on a bun, top with a pice of turkey bacon and 1 tablespoon of yogurt mixture. Enjoy the cool creamy-ness of the sauce with the smokey and spiciness of the burger. A perfect match. Sadly, I accidentally deleted the finished product of the burgers on the bun.

Peeps freezer pops

Just when you thought “sugar-free” Peeps were too good to be true and they couldn’t find another way to market their marshmallow chicks, they came out with Peeps freezer pops.

 

My boyfriend Brian picked up a box of 10 at the bargain price of $1 at Walgrens. A sucker for anything sweet and fearless at trying new foods, he popped them in his freezer and waited for them to firm up. Apparently they were frozen today, as I got an email saying, “FROZEN PEEPS ARE VERY GOOD!” Yes, in caps lock and all.

I am quite skeptical of trying them. Every time I think of how sweet and sugary they could be, I have flashbacks to the time I made a catastrophic decision and ordered a cotton candy blizzard at Dairy Queen. I’m sure my curiosity will get the best of me and a Peeps popsicle will be in my near future… that is, if there are any left.

Easy Cheesy Mac and Cheese

Are you afraid of making homemade mac and cheese? Does it seem too complicated? This recipe will change your mind. Say goodbye to box mac and cheese forever.

World’s easiest and best Mac and Cheese(adapted from Babble):

Ingredients:

  • 1 8 ounce package of elbow macaroni, cooked and drained(any small noodle that holds cheese will work)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 cups milk(the recipe called for whole, i used skim)
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 3 cups colby jack cheese, shredded
  • 2 cups bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup  butter, melted
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large saucepan, melt the 2 tablespoons of butter.  Add the onion powder, then whisk in the flour and milk. Cook until slightly thickened.  Add three cups of the cheddar cheese and stir until melted in the mixture. 

After mixed and melted add the 3 cups of colby jack cheese.

Once incorporated and smooth,  toss the cheese mixture with the cooked and drained pasta. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Spoon into a 9x13in casserole dish.

In a separate bowl combine bread crumbs and melted butter, add salt and pepper to taste. Top mac and cheese with buttered bread crumbs.

Bake 20-25 minutes or until breadcrumbs are golden brown. Let stand 5 minutes before serving to let cheese sauce thicken.

The consensus was that there was way too much bread crumb topping and it should be cut in half. Otherwise it was a delightfully cheesy recipe of pure comfort. It would be easy to switch up the cheeses or spice up this versatile recipe. Enjoy.

More smoothies

I’ve been on a smoothie-a-day kick since I started posting about smoothies. Addicted, I am.

Two new flavors that I have tried out recently were:

Strawberry-banana with coconut. I used unsweetened, frozen strawberries, banana, chia seeds and some imitation coconut with my usual combination of greek yogurt, milk or water and ice. The imitation coconut added a nice variety to the standard strawberry-banana smoothie.

The other more exciting combo was a healthier version of Brian’s favorite smoothie at Meli Cafe. Peanut butter, chocolate and banana.

I made 12-16oz smoothies for both of us by using:

  • 1 carton of vanilla Chobani greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup skim milk
  • 1 very ripe banana
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  • 2-3 tablespoons Hershey’s chocolate syrup, plus more for drizzling
  • lots of ice

Combine ingredients and blend well.

Cinnamon Sugar Pull-apart Bread

This recipe has been all over cooking/baking blogs lately, tempting me at every click of the mouse. After reading the steps involved in making it, I decided that I would have to wake up earlier than I wanted to make it as a breakfast food. So, I made it mid-afternoon and it worked wonderfully as a snack, thanks to Joy the Baker.

Ingredients for the dough:

  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus 2 tablespoons(I used 1 3/4 cup of whole wheat flour and the rest regular)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 envelope active dry yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 ounces unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Ingredients for the filling:

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 ounces unsalted butter, melted until browned

Directions:

Whisk together 2 cups flour, sugar, yeast and salt in a large bowl.  Set aside.

In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs. Set aside.

In a small saucepan, melt together milk and butter until butter has just melted.  Remove from the heat and add water and vanilla extract.  Let mixture stand for a minute or two, or until the mixture registers 115 to 125F.

Pour the milk mixture into the dry ingredients and mix with a spatula.  Add the eggs and mix until the eggs are incorporated into the batter.  Add the remaining 3/4 cup of flour and stir with the spatula until well combined.  Your dough will be sticky.

Grease a large bowl and place dough in it.  Cover with plastic wrap and a clean kitchen towel(not terry cloth).  Place in a warm space and allow to rest until doubled in size. This should take about one hour.

While the dough is rising, whisk together the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg for the filling.  Set that aside.  

If you are home, like I was, have your mom melt 2 ounces of butter until browned.  Set aside.  

Also, have her grease  a 9×5×3-inch  loaf pan.  If you’re not home, like I was, you will have to do these steps yourself.

After one hour of resting, deflate the risen dough and knead about 2 tablespoons of flour into the dough.  Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rest for 5 minutes.  

On a lightly floured work surface, use a rolling-pin to roll the dough out.  The dough should be 12-inches tall and about 20-inches long.  

Spread melted butter across all of the dough.  

Sprinkle with all of the sugar and cinnamon mixture.  

It seems like an excessive amount of filling, but use it all.

Slice the dough vertically, into six equal-sized strips.  

Stack the strips on top of one another.

Slice the stack into six equal slices once again.

You’ll have six stacks of six squares.  

Stack the dough squares in the loaf pan.  

Place a kitchen towel over the loaf pan and allow in a warm place for 30 to 45 minutes or until almost doubled in size.

Place a rack in the center of the oven and pre-heat to 350 degrees F.  Place loaf in the oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the top is very golden brown.  The top may be lightly browned, but the center may still be raw.  A nice, dark, golden brown will ensure that the center is cooked as well.

Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 20 to 30 minutes.   Run a butter knife around the edges of the pan to loosen the bread and invert onto  a clean board.  Peel pieces off and enjoy. This can easily be reheated to eat the next day.