Monday, January 4, 2016

12 new months = 12 new "tries". January.1

Every year my husband and I commit to trying 12 new recipes - partly because we subscribe to cooking magazines and it's a way of justifying the expense of the subscription, and partly because we really love trying new foods!  This year I thought I'd feature our 12 "tries" here!

So January 4th I tried a version of "Bullet Proof Coffee" that everyone has been raving about. The correct recipe is here , but I'm feeling fairly lazy so I made my own version. When I first heard about this diet marvel I thought "no way am I gonna get the blender dirty for a cup of coffee" and then I pondered the idea of adding butter and oil to your coffee...seems counter intuitive to me.

So this morning I decided to toss a large spoon of coconut oil and a small spoon of sugar-in-the-raw into my strong cup of brewed coffee. I stirred briskly, in a sorta blender-like manner.

The coffee has a sheen of oil on the surface which is fairly gross. It tastes AH-Mahzing! There's an oily aftertaste but it's smooth and rich and delish.

It can't really be good for you - I get the concept of the extra energy you have from the fats - but for now I'll stick with plain brewed coffee. That said, on those days that the brew is extra bitter and dark I now know that a spoonful of coconut oil smooths out the taste and it's a delicious treat!
So there you first "try" of the year.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Zucchini Squash Casserole "Fake Chilie Rellenos"

2 pounds of diced summer squash (zucchini) 
1 pound diced jack cheese 
4 eggs 
1/2 cube butter 
1 small can diced Ortega chilies 
2 teaspoons baking powder 
1 teaspoon salt 
3 tablespoons flour 
1/4 cup soda cracker crumbs

  • Cook squash until barely tender. Drain/cool.
  • Mix everything except crumbs and butter.
  • Butter casserole dish, sprinkle bottom with crumbs.
  • Pour in mixture, top with crumbs, dot with butter.
  • Bake at 325° for 35-45 minutes.
  • Allow to set before cutting.

 The finished dish resembles a quiche - it's full of yummy goodness from all the cheese, not too spicy for kids (take it up a notch with pepper jack cheese!) and a great way to use up extra squash. 

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Kima - an old favorite goes Paleo

Saute up some onions and garlic, brown your choice of ground meat, add some fun spices and your favorite veggies, and you've got a quick, healthy skillet curry. The original version includes quite a large amount of butter and frozen peas...and is served over rice. This updated version moves to a healthier oil choice (and less of it), and I suggest substituting another veggie for the peas - but their convenience and sweetness is a great way to go! Skip the rice! 


1 Tablespoons Coconut oil
1 clove garlic
1 cup onion

1 # ground beef, bison, lamb, turkey

Brown well

1 Tablespoon curry powder
1 ½ teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon chili powder
dash pepper
2 tomatoes, diced
2 potatoes, diced
1 pkg. frozen peas – or fresh broccoli stems, or green beans!

Cover and simmer for 25 minutes

6 servings

Psst…pretty darn good breakfast.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Sierra Nevada Pale Ale Turkey Burgers

We made these burgers for the 4th of July and loved the flavor. Seriously the best turkey burger....ever.

This is not a burger, it's beer

Burgers on the "Jo-Fo"

The burgers form super soft and very hard to grill. Oil your grill well. I made a second batch and added an egg and doubled the bread crumbs but that didn't help much - just made them taste a bit "bready". We cooked the second batch on the "Jo-Fo" (George Foreman Grill) and it worked much better - we got perfect burgers.


Sierra Nevada Turkey Burgers

1/2 cup Sierra Nevada Pale Ale

1 pound ground turkey

1 tablespoon Sierra Nevada Pale Ale mustard (or your favorite Dijon mustard)

1/2 cup yellow onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped

1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped

1/2 cup bread crumbs

Dash of Worcestershire sauce

Salt and pepper

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Cover the mixture and place in your refrigerator for at least 2 hours, overnight at the longest. When it’s party time, pre-heat your grill to medium heat. Form the turkey meat into patties (the size is up to you).   Place the patties on the hot grill and cook for 5-7 minutes on each side, until cooked through (165 degrees). Place on a toasted bun and top with your favorite burger fixings! Might we recommend arugula, red onion, avocado, and cheddar cheese?

This recipe comes from the Sierra Nevada newsletter July 2013
Recipe by Aften Detwiler. 
Our Southern California Events Manager, Aften’s two biggest passions are craft beer and the outdoors. A food and beer aficionado, she is knee-deep in the Los Angeles craft beer scene, and in her free time she loves learning about beer, tasting beer and whipping up drool-inducing, beer-inspired dishes. 

Friday, July 12, 2013

Gado Gado Salad (Peanut Dressing)

Gado Gado Salad with Shrimp
I fell in love with this dish on a trip to Maui. After a week on island I was craving veggies and something light and found it on the menu at Hula Grill at Kaanapali Beach. 

I came home and began trying to replicate the dressing....and after quite a few tries I've settled on something I like.

One key to remember is to customize this dish with the ingredients you like and adjust the dressing for spiciness. Just eliminate the jalapenos for a mild delicious sauce!  Gado Gado is traditionally served with boiled potatoes, tofu and hard boiled eggs. I don't use any of those ingredients in mine but instead serve it with a rice base and lots of greens. It's an Indonesian dish and you'll find lots of recipes on line that might inspire you to make changes to my recipe. Have fun with it - it's a light, delicious and very filling dish. It's super easy to make it gluten free, or vegan and it's already a dairy free dish!

So pull out a sharp knife and your cutting board, turn on some music and start chopping.

Gado Gado Salad

Base - Cook and cool your choice of: Rice, Quinoa, potatoes (boiled), or other grain.

Layer 2 - Cooked Veggies: Blanch and cool your choice of the following vegetables:
Green Beans
Summer Squash
Corn (baby corn is fun)

Layer 3 - Raw Veggies:  Slice or dice an assortment of raw veggies:
Bell Pepper
Green Onion
Peas (snap or shelled)
Salad layer  - Chopped cabbage, romaine, or your favorite greens
(they are mixed in there)

 Protein layer - Cooked and chilled – chicken, fish, shrimp,  hard boiled eggs, tofu.

Toppings: Cilantro, other herbs as desired, chopped peanuts. Serve with a lime wedge and additional dressing

Dressing –layer over base layer and a bit in between other layers.  

Peanut Coconut Dressing Recipe

1 Tablespoon oil
2 Tablespoons minced shallots
2 cloves minced garlic
1 Cup coconut milk
2/3 cup natural peanut butter – crunchy is best!
1/3 cup lime juice (or lemon)
1 Tsp lime zest (or lemon)
1/3 c chopped Jalapenos – to taste
2 Tablespoons minced shallots
2 cloves minced garlic
½ Tsp coriander
½ Tsp cumin
1 Tablespoon minced/grated ginger
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1 Tablespoon fish sauce (or 1 tsp anchovy paste)
½ Tsp sambal oelek (chili sauce)

Heat oil and gently sauté shallots and garlic (and anchovy paste if using). Add all other ingredients except lime juice and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 10-12 minutes until the sauce is creamy, stirring often. Add Lime juice, stir and cool. 

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Wonderstruck Cranberry Chutney

The Best Bootlegged Cranberry Chutney Recipe Ever
2 c Whole cranberries
1 1/3 c Sugar (not so healthy, but needed else the cran tart you to death. Turkey can’t save you!)
1/2 c Dried chopped figs
1/2 c Dried cherries, strawberries, cranberries, and/or blueberries
5 tbsp Apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp Water
2 tbsp Chopped red onion
1 tbsp White rum (apple juice can be substituted.)
1/2 tsp Curry powder
1/2 tsp Ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp Fresh grated ginger root
Bring all ingredients to a boil.
Reduce heat to medium and cook 18 minutes or until thickened.
Let cool before serving.
Chutney can also be used as garnish on cream cheese dolloped crackers or as condiment on leftover turkey sandwiches.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Kalico Turkey Loaf

I wanted a turkey meatloaf with more flavor and nutrition, which is moist and kid-friendly. First run at this was pretty darn good. 


1 20 oz package ground turkey
2 eggs
1 pkt Trader Joe's chicken stock concentrate, or a few tablespoons of chicken stock
1/2 cup finely diced onion
1/2 cup finely diced green bell pepper
1/2 cup shredded carrot
1 lg clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp fresh thyme or 1/4 tsp dried thyme
1/4 cup chopped sun dried tomatoes (or 1 tsp tomato paste
1 Tblsp Worcestershire sauce
1 cup bread crumbs (or half oatmeal)
1/4 dry sprouted lentils "cooked"
Salt and pepper to taste


Saute onions and bell pepper in olive oil until soft, add garlic and thyme and cook a bit more. Add sun dried tomatoes, carrots, Worcestershire sauce, chicken stock concentrate, salt and pepper. Stir well until heated. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Mix eggs together, add ground turkey and lightly mix. Add lentils and veggie mix and mix together, again, handle lightly. Add crumbs until consistency is correct for forming a loaf.

If desired top with a bit more bread crumbs for a crusty top, or with Ketchup or a mix of Catsup, mustard, Worcestershire and/or Siracha sauce. Do you write "Catsup" or "Ketchup"? Do you know the difference?

Bake at 350 for an hour for one large loaf, 30 min for two small loaves.

This recipe has nothing at all to do with Hawaii. I took this photo of a wild turkey on the Big Island near Waimea, and since a photo of meatloaf of any kind is pretty disgusting I thought I'd share this instead. Gobble it up!