Sunday, 20 May 2018

Southwest Burgers

It's TIME!  Time for BURGERS!  Which means it's summer time.  *sigh*  I'm so happy!

I started making fancy burgers a couple of years ago - and I have to say that I never get bored of doing them!

I make the buns from scratch each burger day.

I've started incorporating more fun sides rather than just fries and salad.

It makes me HAPPY!  Like summer makes me HAPPY!

I highly recommend that you take a moment and peruse the list found on my Recipe Index page.  There are some AMAZING burgers that I've made that you shouldn't miss out on.

Let's get going on these Southwest Burgers.

There aren't very many ingredients - but they all pack a punch.


First, in a large mixing bowl, combine a couple of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (chopped really well).


Then add some adobo sauce.  And grated onion.


And the onion powder.


Then the cumin.


Salt and pepper to taste.  And then the ground beef.  Then mix it together - don't over mix! - and divide and shape into four patties.  Don't overwork the meat or the burgers will be tough.

So there's no pictures here because I probably forgot or got busy or distracted by my cute niece or my brother's dog.  It happens.  Fret not.

The sauce for this burger is going to be a mix of mayo, adobo sauce, lime juice, and cilantro (which isn't present in this picture).

Combine everything in a medium bowl and store in the fridge.  This could be made earlier in the day so it has time to come together.


Cook up the burgers with Monterey Jack cheese on top.  But you could also do a cojita or queso fresco if  you wanted.


Top with the sauce.


And avocado and lettuce.


The avocado is the perfect accompaniment to the smoky flavor of the burgers.

I loved these burgers - I love the creamy avocado, the smoky meat, and the brightly flavored mayo is fantastic. 

If you like southwest tex mex - then this is the burger for you!

Enjoy!

Monday, 23 April 2018

Chile Lime Shrimp Tacos

Guys.  Cinco de Mayo is coming.  Like SOON!  So you should probably start thinking about what you're going to have now.

And if you're super busy, I totally support easy choices.  If you have a bitchin' food scene, you can head out to your favorite Mexican food establishment - in fact I encourage it.  I've even got a FANTASTIC place where I live.

But it's also just fun to stay in and whip out that Margaritaville Margarita maker and make something amazing.

And after a few margaritas out of the Margaritaville machine, these tacos are a perfect choice.

Cause ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS COOK SHRIMP and chop cabbage.  And maybe an avocado or two.

That's IT.

I mean.  If you're feeling up to it - you could totally make this pico de gallo or this white sauce.  That I serve with my amazing baja fish tacos.

Okay - so get everything together.


In a large Ziploc bag, combine the garlic,


Olive oil,


Lime zest,


Red pepper flakes, paprika, chili powder, and salt.


Smoosh everything together.  I'm not sure if "smoosh" is a technical cooking term that say - Gordon Ramsey would use, but Gordon's not here right now - and I do what I want here.

Add the shrimp and toss - smoosh - to coat the shrimp entirely.

It needs to marinate for 15 minutes.


Then - slice up the cabbage and dice the jalapeno and toss both together with the lime juice.

When the shrimp are done marinating, heat a large pan over medium-high heat.  When the pan is hot, add the shrimp and cook one side for a couple of minutes, flip and cook the other side until pink all the way through.  


You can gently warm up with tortillas in a frying pan or in the microwave.

To assemble - take a taco, add a little cabbage, add some shrimp, some avocado.  Maybe a little squeeze of fresh lime.


Serve with my favorite Mexican Rice!


Super simple, super FAST, and I totally think these are diet friendly!

Using a corn tortilla makes them gluten-free-friendly TOO!

I loved that these tacos were incredibly uncomplicated and the flavor of the shrimp was perfect - slightly smoky and sweet.  (I'm a sucker for lime)

Would these be something you should have for Cinco de Mayo?

Enjoy!!

xoxo - Heather

Sunday, 8 April 2018

Chicken Bacon Ranch Lasagna

Are you all sugared out?  Come onnnnn - I know you're not really.

Just in case you are though, let's swing that dial from sweet to MEGA-savoury.

Just a heads up - there's a TON of bacon.  Like 2 1/2 cups.  TWO AND A HALF CUPS.  Whew.  I think one of my ventricles just seized.

Now - I'm a traditionalist.  Lasagna is supposed to be a red meat sauce, cottage cheese, noodles, mozzarella, and Parmesan.

Period.

So I danced around this recipe for AGES before I finally got up the courage to just give it a try.

OMG.

I HATE myself for waiting so long.

Now - fair warning.  These pictures are BRUTAL.  BRUTALLY BAD.  There might have been a lightbulb out in the kitchen.  Plus it was probably dark at 4:00pm when I started putting this together.

They do no justice whatsoever to this delicious recipe.  Don't let that deter you.

First, you're going to start the sauce.


In a medium pot, melt the butter and whisk in the flour.  Allow the mixture to cook until the flour is slightly golden.


Slowly start adding the milk, whisking until thickened.


Add the cream.


And the ranch dressing mix.


And the crushed bullion cube and cook, whisking constantly until thickened.


Next to assembly.  Make sure everything is ready to go.  Mise en place.  Cooked noodles, shredded rotisserie chicken, shredded cheese, cooked chopped bacon.


Start by putting a little sauce in the bottom of the pan.  Top with three noodles.


Chicken.


Bacon.


Sauce and cheese.  Repeat two more times.


Bake for 45 minutes.


OMG.  I could have eaten an entire pan of this lasagna and not felt an ounce of regret.

This is perfect for a Sunday Supper, or for company, or maybe just for you.  I wouldn't judge at all.

The sauce was creamy and perfect, it was so easy to put together.  I was worried the ranch flavour would be overpowering and gross - but I was crazy to worry - it was perfect!  

You could also add in regular onions, or green onions, or Victoria recommends mushrooms (barf, no thank you).  and a little extra cheese on top is always a treat!

So yeah.  Don't shy away from this one.  You'll so regret waiting.

Monday, 2 April 2018

Cadbury Creme Egg Brownies (Version 3)

In my last post, I talked about using Cadbury Crème Eggs IN recipes, but there are recipes that take the ELEMENTS of a Crème Egg and re-create them into something else.

This would be one of those recipes.

It's a three-layer confection that starts with a from-scratch brownie and a chocolate ganache that sandwiches a rich and creamy fondant middle.

And, not to blow the ending, I totally LOVED it.

First, start with the brownie bottom.


In the bowl of a double-boiler over gently simmering water, melt the chocolate and the butter.


While the chocolate and butter are melting, prepare the dry ingredients in a separate bowl.

Sift together the flour,


The cocoa powder,


With the salt.


And set aside.

Once the chocolate and butter are melted together, stir until well combined and add the brown sugar,


The white sugar,


The eggs.


And the flour mixture.


Pour the batter into a parchment line 8 x 8 inch baking pan.  Bake and let cool.


After the base layer has been baked and is cooled to room temperature, start the middle fondant layer.


In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the butter,


Salt,


The vanilla,


The corn syrup,


And the icing sugar.  Beat until fluffy.  Then, divide the mixture into two bowls and color one batch of filling yellow.

Layer the filling on the base layer.


Pop that into the fridge to set while you're making the top layer.

Melt chocolate and butter together and pour evenly over the top of the filling layer.

Chill overnight.

Pull the brownies from the pan using the parchment, score the chocolate, and cut the brownies into pieces.


Yummo.  

The brownie is nice and chewy and the fondant layer is rich and creamy.


Try not to eat them all!

(But really, it's only an 8 x 8 inch pan.  Like how bad could it be?)

Happy Easter - Heather