Calling All Vegetarians!

So this past week, I was looking for something new and exciting to make.  I decided on something burger related because I was craving that at the time.  But as I browsed through burger recipes, I came across this little gem.  Although I am usually beef or turkey patty kinda girl, this bean burger caught my attention.  It might be because I grew up in a house with a vegetarian (my dad), or it could be that I am subconsciously moving away from my obsession with meat (don’t worry, I’m still a bacon addict) and onto an interest in just interesting and different recipes.  This recipe is for a parmesan, kale, and white bean burger.  Yes, I have never bought kale in my life, and my mom’s jaw dropped when I told her that I had used kale in a recipe.  But HEY, you gotta try new ingredients sometimes, right?  Anyways, they turned out really well, and I chose to eat them with mixed greens and a horseradish sauce.  To tell you the truth, I have no idea how I came up with the idea of putting horseradish sauce on it, but it worked out quite well, so I was very pleased with the combination.

Well enough talking from me! Here is the recipe for Parmesan, Kale, and White Bean Burgers

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INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 large leaves kale, stems removed, leaves chopped
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/8 teaspoon paprika
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 3 cups cooked white beans (or 2, 15 oz. cans rinsed and drained)
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan
  • 2 sun-dried tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 eggs

DIRECTIONS

In a skillet set over medium heat, cook onion and garlic, in bit of oil, until softened. Add kale, water and spices. Cook until kale is wilted.

Mash beans in a large bowl with a potato masher or the back of a fork. Add kale mixture and remaining ingredients, mashing as you go. Season mixture with salt and pepper.

Divide and form into 6 patties. Cook on the grill or the stove top over medium heat, until both sides are browned and patties are heated through.

Serve over a bed of lettuce and drizzle with horseradish sauce (recipe below)

HORSERADISH SAUCE

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 3-4 tablespoons prepared horseradish

DIRECTIONS

Mix sour cream and horseradish together until blended.

Recipe courtesy of kitchensimplicity.com

This was a recipe that I stepped out on a limb for, and it ended up being really delicious; in the end, a good risk taken.  So go ahead, buy your first (or 100th) head of kale and take the leap of faith.  Enjoy!

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It’s Soup Season!

Fall and winter are always the best time to make and eat soup and there are two reasons why.  One, it’s cold out, so a bowl of soup warms you up from the inside out.  Two, it’s cold and flu season, and what better remedy for a sore throat and headache then a piping hot bowl of homemade chicken noodle soup?  As I am in college, I wanted this to not take too long, and I came across this recipe that is very time flexible   Now I have my very own batch of chicken noodle soup that I made all by myself, and on this cold day of November, it’s the perfect comfort food!

Here is the recipe for Chicken Noodle Soup:

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INGREDIENTS:
1 large yellow onion, peeled and diced
3 stalks celery, diced
3 carrots, peeled and diced
1-3 garlic cloves, to taste
1 1/2 pounds (about 6) chicken thighs, preferably bone-in
1 bay leaf
1-2 quarts chicken stock
1/2 pound noodles
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1-3 teaspoons salt

EQUIPMENT 
6-quart soup pot
Long-handled spoon
Pasta pot

DIRECTIONS

1. Cook the Vegetables: Warm a teaspoon of oil over medium heat in the dutch oven or soup pot. Add the diced onions, celery, and carrots with a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables just start to soften, 3-5 minutes. Clear a space in the middle of the pan and add the garlic. Cook until aromatic, about 30 seconds, then stir the garlic into the vegetables.

2. Sear the Chicken: Remove the skin from the chicken thighs, but leave the bone in. (Boneless chicken thighs are also fine in this recipe, but the bones add richness to the broth.) Move the vegetables to the edges of the pan and warm the remaining teaspoon of oil in the middle of the pan. When hot, add the chicken thighs, fitting them into a single layer. It’s ok if they are snug. Cook without moving for about 3 minutes, until the underside is seared golden. Flip the thighs and sear the other side until golden.

3. Add the Broth and Simmer: Add the bay leaf and 1/2 teaspoon of salt to the pot. Pour in one quart of the broth, reserving the remaining quart for later. Bring to a simmer, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer for 30 minutes.

4. Shred the Chicken: Move the pot off the heat and transfer the chicken to a plate with a slotted spoon. Use two forks to pull the meat apart into shreds (or chop into cubes). Remove and discard any bones. It’s ok if the meat is still a little pink in the middle at this point.

5. Cook the Pasta: Bring a separate pot of water to a boil for the pasta. When boiling, salt the water generously and add the pasta. Cook until the pasta is barely al dente and the drain. 

6. Finish the Soup: Return the shredded chicken to the soup and bring to a simmer. If the chicken wasn’t quite finished cooking, continue simmering until it has cooked through.  If a thinner broth is desired, add additional chicken broth. Remove the bay leaf, and taste the soup. Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat.  Spoon some of the pasta into a bowl and spoon the soup over the pasta and serve.

**REMEMBER** If you add the pasta directly to the soup, it will keep absorbing moisture, which often makes the pasta soggy.  To avoid this, store the pasta separate from the soup and serve it with the soup in individual portions.

Recipe courtesy of theKitchn.com

With a bowl of this homemade soup in hand, all you need is a blanket and a good movie, and you are ready for the fall and winter months! Enjoy!