Thursday, May 28, 2009

Greek-Style Turkey Burgers


  • 1 egg white
  • 1/3 cup fine dry wheat bread crumbs
  • 1 Tbsp. milk
  • 1 0.7-oz. envelope Italian salad dressing mix (5 teaspoons)
  • 1 lb. uncooked ground turkey or chicken
  • 4 100%whole wheat burger buns or pita bread rounds, toasted.
  • Olive-Tomato Relish
  • 1/4 cup feta cheese (1 oz.)..sliced or crumbled is fine.


1. In a medium bowl beat egg white with a whisk; stir in bread crumbs, milk, and half of the dry salad dressing mix. Add turkey; mix well. (Reserve the remaining half of the dry salad dressing mix for Olive-Tomato Relish.) Shape turkey mixture into four 3/4-inch-thick patties.

2. Place patties on the grill rack directly over medium heat; grill for 14 to 18 minutes or until turkey is done (165 degrees F), turning once halfway through grilling.

3. Butter 100% whole wheat buns and grill until lightly crisp and browned. Place patty on and top with Olive-Tomato Relish and feta cheese. Makes 4 servings.

* Olive-Tomato Relish: In a small bowl stir together 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar, 2 teaspoons olive oil, and the remaining half of the dry salad dressing mix. Stir in 1 cup finely chopped tomato, 1/4 cup finely chopped cucumber, and 1/4 cup finely chopped pitted kalamata or ripe olives. Makes about 1-1/3 cups.

Olive-Tomato Relish

2 tbsp white wine vinegar
2 tsp olive oil
half a pack dry italian seasoning mix
1 cup chopped tomato
1/4 cup chopped pitted kalamata olives

In a small bowl stir together white wine, olive oil, seasoning mix. whisk, add in remaining ingredients and refridgerate and chill.
Makes about 1-1/3 cups.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

S'mores Cheesecake with Summer Berries

Two American classics in one dessert: A rich milk chocolate cheesecake sandwiched between a buttery graham cracker crust and a fluffy marshmallow topping. The Berries sauced up will give this just the right balance. Set aside some time.. and it's worth it.

Recipe Courtesy Bon Appetit Magazine June 2008

1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (made from 9 whole crackers finely ground in processor; 1 packet)
3 tablespoons sugar
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted
9 oz high-quality Dark chocolate (such as Lindt or Ghirardelli), chopped
2 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
3 large eggs
1 cup sugar
2 large egg whites
3 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/8 teaspoon salt
12 large marshmallows, cut into quarters with wet kitchen scissors
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1-pint container fresh Strawberries
1 1-pint container fresh blackberries
For Crust :
Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350°F. Mix crumbs and sugar in medium bowl. Add melted butter; stir until mixture is evenly moistened. Press onto bottom of 9-inch-diameter springform pan with 2 3/4-inch-high sides. Bake until set, about 12 minutes. Remove from oven; cool. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F.
For Filling :
Stir chocolate in top of double boiler set over barely simmering water until smooth. Remove from over water and cool to lukewarm, stirring occasionally.
Combine cream cheese, sugar, and salt in processor and blend until smooth. With motor running, add whipping cream through feed tube and process just until blended. With motor running, add melted chocolate, then add eggs 1 at a time, blending and scraping down sides after each addition until mixture is smooth. Pour batter over crust in pan.
Bake cake until outer edge is slightly puffed and cake is barely set in center (center will look shiny and move slightly when pan is gently shaken), about 55 minutes. Transfer cake to rack. Run small sharp knife around cake to loosen. Chill uncovered until cold, 8 hours or overnight. DO AHEAD Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and keep refrigerated.
For Topping :
Whisk sugar, egg whites, 3 tablespoons water, cream of tartar, and 1/8 teaspoon salt to blend in large metal bowl. Set bowl over saucepan of simmering water; whisk constantly until sugar dissolves and mixture thickens and is hot to touch, about 3 minutes. Remove bowl from over water and stir in marshmallows (keep water simmering in saucepan). Let stand until marshmallows soften, about 3 minutes. Set bowl with mixture over simmering water; using handheld electric mixer, beat until stiff shiny peaks form, about 4 minutes. Beat in vanilla.
Scrape topping onto cheesecake. Using spatula, spread topping to edges of cake, swirling decoratively. Let stand until set, about 15 minutes.
Using kitchen torch, lightly brown topping in spots. (Or preheat broiler; place cake at least 4 inches from heat source and broil just until topping is lightly browned in spots, watching closely to avoid burning, about 2 minutes.) Chill cake until cold. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover with cake dome and keep chilled. Remove pan sides. Place cake on platter.
Mix berries in medium bowl with 1 cup water and 4 tbsp sugar, place in fridge and chill until ready to cut cake and serve. Cut cake into wedges. Serve berry mixture alongside.

Chimichurri Brine (with pork chops)

It's Official BRINE IS BEST... I will never cook pork without brine again. I've never been a huge fan of pork with too many times being served hard chops and lack lustre flavor, it sits like a brick in your tummy .... I went out on a limb and thought.. alright alright I'll give it one more chance, everyone keeps telling me about brine so will try it. So here it is folks.. I dare you to try it and love it too.
Recipe Adapted from BHG Grilling Spring 2009
Prep: 10 minutes
6 Cups of water
1 Small onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup kosher salt
1 tbsp finely shredded lime peel
1/4 cup lime juice
1/4 cup fresh parsely, chopped
1 tbsp oregano , chopped
1/4 cup white sugar
4 cloves garlic
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
Desired Meat or Poulty (in this case Pork Loin Chops)
1. In a large bowl, combine the water, onion, salt, lime juice, parsley, oregano, sugar, garlic, black pepper. Stir until salt and sugar are dissolved.
2. Place desired meat in bowl and covering completely in the brine. For Pork Chops marinate 4-6 hours in the fridge turning occasionally. Drain chops; discard brine. Allow lime bits to stick if they want to.. it gives each bite an extra zing!
3. Prepare grill for indirect grilling with drip pan. Place chops on the grill rack over driop pan. Cover and gril for 35 minutes.. or until done (160F), turning once halfway through grilling.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Garlic-Smashed Potatoes

Recipe Courtesy of Bon Appetit Magazine
February 2009

The Garlic is infused into the potatoes while they are boiling... mmmm... then add your cream butter and chives... YUM

6 Servings

1 3/4 pounds small unpeeled Yukon Gold potatoes (about 16), scrubbed
6 large garlic cloves, peeled
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
1/2 cup sour cream
3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives


Generously butter glass pie dish. Cook potatoes and garlic in medium pot of boiling salted water until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes. Drain; let stand 5 minutes. Discard garlic. Arrange potatoes close together in prepared dish. Using wooden spoon, smash potatoes coarsely until they split open. Drizzle with oil; dot with butter. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Preheat broiler. Broil potatoes until crisp and golden, watching closely to avoid burning, 8 to 10 minutes. Top with dollops of sour cream; sprinkle with chives.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Cherry and Chocolate Chip Cookies

From "Icing on the Cake" Bakery Los Gatos California
"Bon Appetit" Magazine

Makes about 30/feel free to mix things up by replacing the white choclate chips with bittesweet or milk chocolate chips. Either way, wash these cookies down with a big glass of cold milk.

1 cup tart cherries (about 5 1/2 Ounces)
1/3 cup cherry liquer (Such as cherry heering)
2 tbsp water
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup (Packed) golden brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 1/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 1/4 cups white chocolate chips

Pre-heat oven to 375. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Bring cherries, cherry liqeur, and 2 tbsp water to boil in small saucepan. Remove from heat, and let soak 15 minutes. Drain cherries;pat dry.
Whisk flour, salt, and baking soda in medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat butter and both sugars in large bowl until creamy. Add eggs and both extracts and beat to blend. Add flour mixture and beat on low just to blend. Stir in cherries and all chocolate chips. Scoop tablespoonfuls of dough onto prepared baking sheets, spacing 1 inch apart.
Bake cookies until edges are light golden, turning baking sheets halfway through cooking, about 13 minutes. Transfer to rack and cool. DO AHEAD can be made 3 days ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Cafe Rio Tomatillo Ranch Dressing

Adapted from a recipe by Kalyns Kitchen

Café Rio Dressing
1 buttermilk ranch dressing packet (make with 3/4 recommended butter milk and 1/2 recommended milk and substitute amounts with sour cream instead)
2 tomatillos (tomato like vegetable with a husk around them)
½ bunch of cilantro
1 clove garlic
Juice of 1 lime
1 Char roasted Jalapeño (Use the seeds too if you like it spicy. You could substitute a few drops of green tobasco for the jalapeno.)

Use a food processor to blend all the ingredients well. Refrigerate.

Herb Aioli

Can you believe how easy and simple this is to make?

1 cup Mayonaise
2 tsp Finely Crushed Garlic
1/2 tsp chopped Fresh Thyme
1/2 tsp chopped fresh Oregano
3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

Combine all ingredients in a food processor, when totally mixed allow it to sit in fridge for at least 30 minutes before using.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Parmesan and Garlic Crusted chicken with Artichoke, Bacon, Roasted Capsicum. Harvarti Cheese and Herb Aioli Panini

If you think the name is a mouthful you should try eating it!!

2 Chicken Breast Halves
2 tbsp Parmesan Cheese
1 tbsp Finely chopped and then smooshed Garlic
1 loaf "everything Italian" Bread (Walmart $1.50!)
1 Small Jar Marinated Artichoke Hearts
1/4 cup thinly sliced Roasted Red Capsicum(Bell Peppers)
8 slices Harvarti Cheese
4 slices bacon cooked till crispy (broken up into chunks)

Herb Aioli Ingredients & Directions
1 cup Mayonaise
2 tsp Finely Crushed Garlic
1/2 tsp chopped Fresh Thyme
1/2 tsp chopped fresh Oregano
3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

Combine all ingredients in a food processor, when totally mixed allow it to sit in fridge for at least 30 minutes before using.

1, Season the chicken with Salt, Pepper, and the chopped and smooshed garlic. Place the chicken in a pan on low temp, cover and allow to slowly cook for 15 minutes. Sprinkle parmesan cheese on the chicken when you turn it . Check the inside of the chicken to make sure it is not pink. Set aside and allow it to rest.

2. While chicken is cooking. slice loaf of bread into 4 equal sections, halve it to create tops and bottoms for the sandwhich. Butter both sides and grill in a pan to create a nice crust.

3. Slice chicken breast 1 cm thickness.

4. Generously spread Aioli on the bottom bread pieces. Place half the Harvarti cheese on the bottom of the paninis, layer on chicken, bacon, chopped artichoke hearts (as much as to your taste) sliced capsicum and top with remaining cheese.

5. Warm pan on medium heat, place sandwhich in pan and put a really heavy pan on top. Allow it to squish and crisp then quickly turn it to the other side and repeat. Repeat for all sandwhiches.