Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Feta Stuffed Chicken Meatballs, Cucumber Salad, & Roasted Garlic Hummus

I'm not going to complain about having a little time off in the middle of the week. It has been great to putz around the house and get some things done that I normally would put off until another break. What I am going to complain about is shoveling snow, crummy street conditions, and cabin fever. I attempted to venture out today to grab some lunch, but had to shovel my way out AGAIN. Through the power of positive thought, I made it out of our neighborhood. Through more positive thought, I bypassed many a crappy winter driver and made it to Whole Foods. It was the least busy I have ever seen Whole Foods. So, I spent a good hour just wondering around the store. Something I normally don't get to do because it is insanely crowded. After my mini adventure, I made it home safely and decided to take a nap. I had a nice dream about green grass, daffodils, and spring. I appreciate you old man winter, but plan on totally embracing spring's arrival.

Dinner tonight had many spring time flavors such as cucumber and mint. The timing was perfect for this meal as a reminder that spring is only a few short days away. To pack in additional legumes and veggies, I used a combination of mushrooms and edamame in the meatballs and served them with a side of garlicky hummus and a light cucumber salad. Since I have yet to find a good gluten-free pita bread to dip in my hummus, I sliced a Sandwich Petal wrap and baked it in the oven while the meatballs finished cooking. Light, healthy, and bursting with fresh flavor, these feta stuffed meatballs with cucumber salad are the perfect cure for anyone suffering from cabin fever.

Feta Stuffed Chicken Meatballs with Cucumber Salad
inspired by Groumet & my Baked Chicken Meatbballs with Peperonata

For the cucumber salad:

1-2 cucumbers, chopped (I used English cucumbers)
1 tablespoon red onion, thinnly sliced
1 tablespoon chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
1 tablespoon chopped mint
1/4 cup fat-free or low-fat plain Greek yogurt
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon celery seed
Salt & pepper to taste

For the Meatballs:

2 slices center cut bacon, cut into bits
1 yellow or white onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, pressed or finely minced
1/4 cup portobello mushrooms, chopped
1/4 cup frozen shelled edamame, thawed
1 lb. ground chicken
2 egg whites, beaten
1/4 cup chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
1 tablespoon chopped mint
1 tablespoon chopped basil
1 tablespoon ketchup
1 tablespoon corn meal
1/2 cup feta cheese, cut into 1' pieces

To make the cucumber salad: Toss the cucumber, red onion, parsley, and mint together in a bowl. Set aside. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the yogurt, vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper. Pour over the cucumber mixture. Toss together and cover with plastic wrap. Let the mixture marinate for 30 minutes or store in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve.

To make the Meatballs: Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-low heat. Add the bacon, onions, garlic, mushrooms, and edamame. Cook, stirring occasionally until the onions soften. Remove from the heat and cool slightly. Place in a blender or food processor. Blend or process until the mixture forms a paste. Seta side.

In a large bowl, combine the ground chicken, onion and edmamae mixture, egg whites, parsley, mint, basil, ketchup, and corn meal. Cover and let the mixture stand in the fridge for 15-20 minutes or overnight to allow the corn meal to bind the mixture together. Remove from the fridge. Begin forming the meatballs in your hands using approximately 1/4 cup servings. With your thumb, make an indentation in the meatball and stuff the cheese in the meatball. Cover the indentation by rolling the meatball in your hands so the meat fills in the whole. Place on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Repeat until all of the meat is used. At this point you can store the meatballs in the refrigerator or freezer in a resealable container until you are ready to bake them. When you are ready to bake them, preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Spray a large baking or casserole dish with non-stick spray. Place the meatballs in the dish and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the meatballs measure 165 degrees with a meat thermometer  Remove from the oven and let the meatballs cool slightly before serving. Serve with the cucumber salad.

Roasted Garlic Hummus

3 cloves garlic, peeled
2 15 oz. chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons tahini paste
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Wrap garlic cloves in foil, place on a baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside. Place the chickpeas, garlic, water, tahini paste, and olive oil in your food processor or blender. Blend or process until creamy and smooth. Add the salt and pepper to your taste.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

BBQ Pork Enchiladas, Bacon Black Beans, & Updated Cilantro Lime Slaw

Kansas City experienced another major winter storm last night. The snow started right when I got home from work. Justin made it home shortly after me, which was a huge relief. Then, the snow switched to rain and back to snow again. We have yet to shovel the drive knowing that this stuff is a lot heavier than last week's snow. Good thing we have this awesome meal to look forward to again tonight. Now if I just had some margaritas...

My leftover Chipotle Pork Tenderloin gets another use in these saucy BBQ Pork Enchiladas. Served with a side of "refried" black beans and edamame and cool Cilantro Lime Slaw, this meal will have you dreaming about the warmer weather to come. Leftovers never tasted so good!

BBQ Pork Enchiladas

3 cups leftover pulled Chipolte Pork Tenderloin
4 oz. 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened
2 cups shredded 2% cheddar cheese, divided
12 small corn tortillas
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 red onion, finely chopped
1 20 oz. can mild enchilada sauce (I used Old El Paso because it is gluten-free)
1 cup BBQ sauce
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 9' x 13' inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, beat together the pork, cream cheese, and 1 cup cheddar cheese. Set aside. Heat a large stock pot over medium heat. Add the olive oil to the pot. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally for 5-6 minutes or until the onion begins to caramelize and turn light brown. Add the enchilada sauce and BBQ sauce. Stir until combine and remove from heat. Spread 1/2 cup of the sauce in the bottom of your baking dish. Set aside. Place your tortillas on a large plate. Cover with a damp paper towel. Microwave for 1-2 minutes or until the tortillas are pliable enough to handle. Fill the one tortilla at a time with 2-3 tablespoons of the pork mixture. Roll and place seam side down into the baking dish. Repeat with each tortilla. Pour the remaining sauce over the enchiladas. Bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes. Then, remove from the oven and sprinkle the remaining 1 cup of the cheese. Bake another 10-15 minutes or until the cheese begins to bubble and melt in the middle. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the cilantro over the enchiladas.

My Bacon Black Beans

2 slices center cut bacon, chopped
1/2 yellow or white onion, finely chopped
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup shelled frozen edamame

Heat a medium sized non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add the bacon. Cook for 3-4 minutes or until the bacon begins to crisp. Add the onions. Cook for 5-6 minutes, stirring occasionally so the bacon and onions do not stick to the bottom of the skillet. Add the beans and edamame. Cook for another 5-6 minutes or until the beans are heated through. You can serve as is or give the mixture a whirl in your food processor to make refried beans.

Updated Cilantro Lime Slaw

1 bag cole slaw
1/2 cup green onions, chopped
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 teaspoon grated lime zest
1/2 cup light or fat free sour cream
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
Salt & pepper to taste

In a large resealable bowl, add the cole slaw, cilantro,  and green onions. Set aside. In another small dish, whisk together the sour cream, lime juice, lime zest, mayo, sugar, salt, and pepper. If you are not serving immediately, store the cole slaw mixture separate from the dressing until you are ready to serve. When you are ready to serve, drizzle the dressing over the coleslaw and toss until everything is evenly coated in the dressing.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Before & After Pics Menu Post

Here is what I woke up to Thursday morning when it was snowing two inches per hour.

This is what it looks like today. I think a little snow has melted, since yesterday. I didn't get a picture yesterday because we were digging our way out of the driveway. Shoveling snow is a great workout, but very exhausting.

It really is quite pretty to look at. I suppose we should appreciate this some since we've been in a drought. More snow is forecasted for Monday and Tuesday. Every inch helps and I will have quite the biceps when this is all said and done for the winter:)

In case we do have another major winter storm, I'm planning ahead and stocking up on some pantry staples. Yes, some of my favorite legumes in a can. Baked beans, chickpeas, and black beans will be gracing their presence on the table this week. Not only do they heat well over a fire in case the power goes out, beans also provide lots of fuel for shoveling snow. Beans are packed with resistant starches and other metabolism boosting powers that may help burn those extra layers of winter chub. They really are the magical fruit! Tee hee! I also plan on saving my arms (which are killing me today) some work by using leftover pork early in the week. The pork is simmering away as we speak! It smells divine. Midweek, I've got some ideas on another chicken meatball recipe to remind us that spring is just around the corner. All dishes can be made over the weekend before the storm hits and stored in the fridge until you are ready to heat and serve. Here is this week's menu and grocery list:

Sunday 2/24          Leftover Chipotle Pork Tenderloin, Roasted Sweet Potatoes, & Broccoli

Monday 2/25         BBQ Chipotle Pork Enchiladas, Cilantro Lime Slaw, & Black Beans

Tuesday 2/26         Leftovers

Wednesday 2/27   Baked Greek Chicken Meatballs with Cucumber Salad & Roasted Garlic Hummus with
                             Gluten-Free Flatbread  

Thursday 2/28       Leftovers

Friday 3/1 or         Sausage & Bean Bake with Salad & Cheese Bread
Saturday 3/2

Here is what you will need:

3 cups leftover Chipotle Pork (you can access this recipe by clicking above or searching My Recipage)
1 lb. ground chicken breast
1 package smoked turkey sausage links or turkey kilbasa
1 package center cut bacon
1 bag cole slaw
1 bag lettuce
1 package baby portabello mushrooms
1-2 limes
1-2 cucumbers
1 red onion
3 yellow or white onions
1 bulb garlic
1 bunch green onions
1 bunch cilantro
1 bunch fresh mint
1 bunch Italian flat leaf parsley
1 bag corn tortillas
1 bag gluten-free wraps (such as Sandwich Petals)
1 15 oz. can black beans
1 28 oz. can baked beans
2 15 oz. cans chickpeas
1 can tomato paste
1 28 oz. can enchilada sauce (I use Old El Paso)
1 package gluten-free rolls (such as Shar ciabatta rolls)
1 bag frozen edamame
1 container fat-free or low-fat plain Greek yogurt
1 container light or fat-free sour cream
1 package 1/3 less fat cream cheese
2 packages shredded 2% cheddar cheese

Pantry items you will need:

Tahini paste (I always have this stuff around)
Olive oil blend mayonnaise (I love Hellman's)
White wine vinegar
Granulated sugar
BBQ sauce (be watchful of any modified food starches)
Cayenne pepper
Celery seed
Garlic powder
Dried thyme
Salt & pepper

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Snow Day Bonus Recipe!

They ended up calling off school at around 9:15 last night. I was already in bed getting my beauty rest in case we had to dig our way to work. I forgot to turn off my alarm, woke up, and peeked out the window. Nothing. Notta. Very under-whelming. So, I cozied myself back up in bed. Then, woke up 2 hours later to thunder and lightening and literally almost 6 inches of snow! Justin still had to go in and made it to work before it started snowing. I am really hoping he makes it home okay or stays put. Compared to all of the storms I encountered while growing up in Iowa, this snowstorm is truly epic. I'm not sure how Kansas City will plow its way out.

Until we plow our way out, I am cooking up quite a delicious storm in my kitchen. I was really craving something chocolaty, but didn't want a sugar buzz this early in the morning. Not to mention that I am also chipping away at my attempts to lose the 10 pounds the doc is encouraging me to lose. So far, I've lost two. Not too shabby! That was my goal for the week. But with the weekend quickly approaching, it is likely those pesky two pounds could creep back up on me. Instead of depriving myself, I chose to create a very healthy Chocolate Zucchini Bite.

These little guys are full of chocolaty goodness. You would never know they are actually good for you. According to My Fitness Pal, each bite clocked in at around 40 calories, 1 gram of fiber, and under 1 gram of fat per serving. The secret? Zucchini, dates, and maple syrup substitute for butter and sugar. In place of an egg, I used ground flax seed to bind it all together. These Chocolate Zucchini Bites are the perfect healthy treat no matter what the weather brings.

Chocolate Zucchini Bites

1 tablespoon ground flax seed mixed with 3 tablespoons water
1 small zucchini, roughly chopped
1/2 cup pitted dates
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup corn starch
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray a mini muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside. In a small bowl, mix the flax seed and water together to make your flax egg. Set aside. Place the zucchini, dates, and maple syrup in a food processor. Process until smooth. Add the flax egg, cocoa powder, corn starch, and baking powder. Process until combine, scraping the edge down if needed. Place 1 tablespoon of the chocolate zucchini mixture into each muffin slot. Top with 3-4 chocolate chips. Place the tin in the oven and bake the bites for 20-25 minutes. Cool slightly before serving.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Veggie Deep Dish Quinoa Pizza

News flash! There is a supposed epic snow storm tracked to hit Kansas City. Maybe I'm over reacting, but they have not called off school just yet. Winter Storm Q (insert "fu" in front of Q for a little play on words) is not expected for delivery until midnight tonight. The heavy stuff isn't expected until 8-9 tomorrow morning. This has me a little nervous. We have not ever had a half day of school. They either call it good (no school) or we endure the entire day and have to deal with the ramifications with crazy children and with traffic while driving home. I'm okay with calling it good. I know there is a day of missed instruction; however, we now have kindergarten and preschool in our building. Neither of which handle any amount of remaining within enclosed walls for long periods of time particularly well. It really gets a little scary when you are working with little ones in the masses. The Bear has suggested I prepare a bag of extra clothing and toiletries in case I get stuck at school. I've taken precautionary measures and have my bag ready, just in case. The Bear also only ate one piece of my lovely "Where's the meat Wednesday?" Veggie Deep Dish Quinoa Pizza, stating that if the power goes out tomorrow he will have two pieces of pizza for tomorrow instead of just one.

Why just one piece? Well, my 9' x 13' casserole dish cut 6 nice serving slices. You could make 4 servings if you chose to cut the pieces larger. Since the Bear has caught on to the whole "meatless Mondays" trend, I thought I'd trick him into a vegetarian meal with a "where's the meat Wednesday?" dish. It all worked until he said, "You've changed it on me and I know what you are trying to do. What's the catch?" He laughed when I used my play on words and said he was great without the meat. Not bad, not bad. Especially since I prepared this dish on my day off and had things ready to go while I packed my winter weather bag. Hearty quinoa substitutes as a gluten-free crust topped with a cheesy veggie cream cheese mixture. Because this pizza is baked in a casserole dish, the quinoa crisps at the bottom similar to a deep dish pizza. If you are a beginning vegetarian or meatless Monday newbie, this is a dish for you!

Veggie Deep Dish Quinoa Pizza

1 cup dried quinoa
2 cups water
1 egg white, beaten
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
4 oz. 1/3 less fat cream cheese
1 small zucchini, grated
1/4 cup carrots, grated
1/4 cup celery, finely chopped
1 shallot, finely chopped
2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
1/4 teaspoon Herbs de Provence or dried Italian herbs
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup shredded 2% mozzarella cheese

Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees.  In a large pot, bring the 2 cups water to a boil.  Add the quinoa, stir until the quinoa is dispersed.  Lower the heat and simmer until the liquid is absorbed (about 15-20 minutes).  Cover, remove from heat, and cool for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine the grated zucchini, carrots, celery, shallot, basil, herbs, salt, and pepper together in a medium sized bowl. Stir until combine and set aside.

When the quinoa is cooled, stir in the Parmesan cheese and egg white. Spray a 9' x 13' casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray. Spread the quinoa over the bottom of the pan and press to form the crust. Spread the zucchini mixture over the crust. Top with the mozzarella cheese. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until the cheese begins to bubble and turn golden brown. If you choose to make this dish ahead, cover the pizza before baking. When you are ready to bake and serve, let the dish stand at room temperature while your oven preheats. Add 5-10 minutes additional baking time depending on your oven.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Ham & Bean Soup

Although the weather was a little on the dreary side today, I kind of enjoyed it. It forced me to relax a little after my doctor's appointment this morning. I spent plenty of time in the kitchen, did several loads of laundry, and made it to the gym for a sweaty incline challenge. It was nice to sit down to one of my old childhood favorites.

Campbell's Ham and Bean soup was one of my favorites as a kid. While canned soups are a healthier choice, I feel that making your own is really the best. You know exactly what you are putting in it. This soup has a very simple ingredient list and can by made in your slow cooker. Pair with a side of Cranberry Cheddar Corn Bread and you've got a healthy, comforting meal perfect for a cold, rainy day.

Ham & Bean Soup

2 cups dried pinto beans, rinsed
4 cups water
2 cups low sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup smoked ham, diced
1/2 cup carrot, diced
1/2 cup celery, diced
1 yellow or white onion, diced
1 dried bay leaf
Salt & pepper to taste

Place all ingredients in your slow cooker and stir to combine. Cover and simmer on high heat for 8 hours.

Cranberry Cheddar Corn Bread
inspired by Gluten Free Mommy

1 cup brown rice flour
1 cup shredded 2% cheddar cheese
3/4 cup corn meal
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon dried chopped chives
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1 tablespoon melted butter
1 beaten egg
1 cup buttermilk

Spray a 9' x 9' baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Whisk together the brown rice flour, cheddar cheese, corn meal, sugar, baking powder, chives, cranberries, and salt in a large bowl. Set aside. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the melted butter, eggs, and buttermilk. Add the wet ingredients to the dry, stirring until moistened. Pour the batter into the baking dish and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean. Let cool before cutting or serving.

Birthdays and Back to Blogging

The good times just keep on rolling! This weekend my sisters and mom came to Kansas City for a weekend filled with shopping and loads of laughter. From left to right- My sister Amy & her dog Lunch Box, my sister Erin, myself, and my Mom.

And the love of my life posed for a photo as well:)

I thought this one was good enough to change my profile picture on Facebook. It had been almost two years since I had updated my picture. This one isn't too shabby if I don't say so myself.

After all of the craziness with parent-teacher conferences last week, visitors, and a little scare with my blood pressure, I plan to just relax today. Yes, I did say blood pressure in that last sentence. The day before my birthday, I was not feeling that great and feeling super anxious. The last time I remembered feeling that way was right before the surgery. So, I went down to the school nurse to have her check my blood pressure. It was 150/120! She suggested that I leave and go straight to the doctor. I did as I was told, as I don't tend to ignore my health. Low and behold, I am now on a low dose blood pressure medication. I'm not particularly thrilled about it, but it has been a reality check to chill out. Plus, this situation has encouraged me to sign up for a 5k event coming up next month. Viva la Diva Dash!

Being I like to feel my best when I run, I've got a great, healthy, low stress menu planned for the week. After checking up with the doc this morning, she has encouraged me to try and lose ten pounds. I've decided I am going to target this in little increments with a goal of a pound or two a week. It is tough to think about weight loss since we've been trying to conceive for so long, but I know the magic won't happen with high blood pressure and an extra 10 pounds weighing me down. This menu is packed with a good blend of super foods, fiber, and protein. I'm starting the week off with a soup I had intended to post a while back. We never did eat it, so I'm pulling it out of the freezer for a low stress meal. Today I plan to prep everything for a spin on my Deep Dish Quinoa Pizza I made last spring while on the Drop 10 challenge. I lost a total of 6 pounds that I managed to keep off throughout the summer. With the help of the Diva Dash 5k, My Fitness Pal, and the Self Drop 10 challenge I think losing will be manageable. Here is this week's rundown:

Monday 2/18          Ham & Bean Soup with Cranberry Cheddar Corn Bread

Tuesday 2/19          Leftovers

Wednesday 2/20     Veggie Deep Dish Quinoa Pizza with Tomato Salad

Thursday 2/21         Leftovers

Friday 2/22 or         Chipotle Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Sweet Potatoes & Broccoli
Saturday 2/23

Here is what you will need:

1 lb. pork tenderloin
1 package low sodium deli ham
1 yellow or white onion
1 cucumber
1 pint grape tomatoes
2 small zucchini
2 shallots
1 bag baby carrots
1 bunch celery
1 bulb garlic
2 sweet potatoes
1 bag or box quinoa
1 box low sodium chicken broth
1 can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
1 bottle BBQ sauce (check ingredients for modified starches)
1 bag frozen broccoli florets
1 bag frozen corn
1 container light or fat free sour cream
1 container Parmesan cheese
1 package 1/3 less fat cream cheese
1 package shredded 2% mozzarella cheese
1 package shredded 2% cheddar cheese
1 pint buttermilk
1/2 dozen eggs

Pantry items you will need:

Olive oil
White wine vinegar
Granulated sugar
Brown sugar
Brown rice flour
Corn meal
Baking powder
Dried cranberries
Dried bay leaf
Dried chopped chives
Ground cumin
Herbs de Provence or dried Italian herbs
Salt & pepper (even though I am trying to cut back on salt:))

Have a great President's Day!


Saturday, February 9, 2013

Girl in a Whirl

It has been a long, exciting week around the Nickel household. Thursday, I was informed that I am our district's elementary teacher of the year! This is such an honor! I remember when a couple of close colleagues of mine won this award and was always so enamored to be working with them. The excitement is still settling in and I know there will be more to come. Next week will be even crazier with not only parent-teacher conferences, but also photographs, interviews, and more paperwork for competing at the state level. Not to mention that my birthday is just around the corner. I guess there is no better way to ring in my 32nd birthday than with Turner Teacher of the Year! I feel so grateful and my heart is so full.

With all that is going on, I hope to back log recipes from last week. I have the Meaty Ziti to share with you all. This was a twist on my original Baked Ziti recipe. It is such a great dish to make ahead for a busy week. Comforting, cheesy, and filling. It was a great meal to come home to last week and the leftovers were even better for lunch. I also have to share my Veggie & Tofu Curry with you all. Not only did this meal contain some exotic flavors that pepped up the tofu, it also pulled together in a flash! Perfect for the middle of the week.

After parent-teacher conferences, I will have a well deserved break with Friday off and President's Day off. I hope to be back to my regularly scheduled menu and grocery list postings by next week. I hate to leave my dear readers hanging, but something has to give and I am not totally sure if I'll even make it in the kitchen much. Until then, have a super weekend!

Monday, February 4, 2013

Nickel Turkey-Bacon Burgers

It has been a while since I've made a burger. I believe the last time we even grilled was waaaay back in early October. It isn't due to the weather per say, but because we ran out of grill gas. Being grilling gas is usually the last thing we are thinking of purchasing when we go to Home Depot, grilling has gone to the way side. Until last night. Being it was rather nice weather for an early February evening, I thought burgers would be a good meal for the Super Bowl. 

Justin is usually not the biggest fan of any non-beefy burger I create; however, this one changed his mind. The secret ingredient...drum role please....da da da da! Bacon! Oh yes, remember how bacon won his heart in the Cabonara Mac'n'Cheese last week? It worked again with this burger. Which, speaking of, I've decided to name after us. A nickel is not what it will cost you to make this burger. Wouldn't that be nice? I'm just the gal who came up with it. Lean ground turkey is mixed with sauteed onions and smoky center cut bacon. The center cut bacon helps the turkey stay nice and juicy without adding a ton of grease. If you are looking for a skinnier twist to spice up your ho hum turkey burger, this one will surprise you my friend.

Nickel Turkey-Bacon Burgers

1/2 lb. ground turkey
3 slices center cut bacon, finely chopped
1 yellow or white onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon ketchup
Salt & pepper to taste

Place the ground turkey in a medium sized mixing bowl and set aside. Heat a medium sized skillet over medium-low heat. Add the bacon. Cook, stirring occasionally for 3-4 minutes or until the bacon begins to lightly brown. Add the onions. Cook, stirring occasionally for 5-6 minutes or until the onions begin to turn translucent in color. Remove from heat and cool for 5 minutes before adding the bacon and onions to the turkey. When the mixture has cooled slightly, add to the turkey. Add the ketchup, salt, and pepper. Mix until combine. Divide the mixture into two equal parts. Then, form patties with your hands making sure to make a small indentation with your thumb on the tops of both burgers. Heat your grill to 350-400 degrees. Place the burgers on the grill. Grill for 8 minutes, then flip and grill for an additional 5 minutes on the other side. Serve on buns with all of your favorite burger fixings. I used Shar gluten-free ciabatta rolls for my burger.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Super Sleepy Bowl Sunday Menu Post

So, the Super Bowl has already started. This is what I would have been writing yesterday before coming down with whatever has been running through our school. I don't think I've got anything too bad, but can tell my body is fighting it. At about 10:30 yesterday morning, I started to get the chills. Then I felt really hot and started to get a headache. I ended up deciding that maybe good old fashion ibuprofen, Benedryl, and sleep would help. It did. I ended up sleeping from 11:00 that morning to 4:30 that afternoon. Then went back to bed at 8:00 and slept until 7:30 this morning. I feel okay, still sleepy, but very rushed in getting everything done for the week.

This menu is a little something I put together knowing that I had ground turkey in the deep freeze, pasta, pasta sauce,  and rice in the pantry, and frozen vegetables in my freezer. It is really just what we have on hand. I didn't want to over think things or experiment too much after my much needed rest. I'm sure we will have to run to the store for some things this week, so I will not torture you with a list of groceries that would most likely end up changing. I may add a list to this post in the future, but for now am just sticking with the menu. Here is the rundown:

Sunday 2/3          Turkey-Bacon Burgers with Sweet Potato Tots

Monday 2/4         Meaty Ziti with Salad

Tuesday 2/5         Leftovers

Wednesday 2/6    Veggie & Tofu Curry with Brown Rice

Thursday 2/7        Leftovers

Friday 2/8            Out

Saturday 2/9        Smoked Chicken with French Potato Salad (weather permitting)

Please, please stay healthy!! I plan on doing my best to continue to drink ample amounts of water, take my vitamins, rinse my sinuses, and get plenty of rest. Take care!