Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Thanksgiving Downsized

I tend to be an impulsive cook.  I might be sitting at my desk at work and all of a sudden inspiration will strike for that night’s dinner.  Or it could happen at the grocery store (usually as I’m cruising through the aisles of Mecca - or Market of Choice as THEY prefer to call it).  Sometimes it’s on the 25 minute drive home from work.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that I don’t tend to plan ahead all that much in regards to meals.  Which, if you’re a bargain shopper like me, can sometimes be counterproductive, especially in terms of frozen meat.  See where I’m going here?

The upside to being a hoarder having a well-stocked pantry is that I generally have almost everything on hand already when these little moments of inspiration hit.  A quick trip to the store to pick up produce to round things out might be in order, but most of the time I’m doing ok when it comes to having ingredients already on hand.  The trouble I run into time and time again is not having thawed MEAT at the ready.

So I determined to get better at planning ahead and thawing accordingly.  I’ve been toying with the idea of a Thanksgiving type of burger ever since I picked up a package of ground turkey.  Plus, I also had some of this still hanging around… also in the freezer.

To round out the whole ‘theme’ I baked some sweet potatoes to go along with these little sliders.  Even steamed a few green beans.

It was like Thanksgiving in mini form.

Thanksgiving Turkey Sliders

1 lb ground turkey
¼ cup onion, finely minced
1 tsp salt
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 ½ Tbs olive oil
½ tsp dried sage

Slider Buns
Cranberry sauce
Lemon Garlic Aioli (recipe follows)
Crispy onions (thought they’d pair well with the green beans, which, alas, I got no photo of)

Break up ground turkey into a medium mixing bowl.  Add onion, salt, pepper, sage and olive oil.  Mix thoroughly with hands until just combined.  Form into small ‘slider’ sized patties.

Heat about 1 Tbs olive oil in a cast iron or non-stick frying pan over medium heat.  When the pan comes to temperature, place the sliders in, making sure not to crowd them.  Cook until golden on one side, about 4 minutes, flip over, and cook until done, about another 4 minutes.

Lemon Garlic Aioli

½ cup good quality mayonnaise (or make your own)
2 cloves garlic, crushed
Salt and Pepper to taste
2 - 4 drops Tabasco
Juice from ½ of a lemon

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl.  Stir until mixed thoroughly.

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