DEPRESSION BURGERS aka OKLAHOMA FRIED ONION BURGERS

DURING the depression in El Reno, a small Oklahoma town along the Mother Road aka Route 66 at Hwy 81 when hamburger meat was really expensive Ross Davis, an inventive diner owner found a way to ration the meat with the inclusion of flavorful and cheap onions that stretched the meat and built the flavor too, hence why it was called the depression burger.

The recipe has been passed down through the generations and are still made the same way today. Several other diners followed suit and a burger star was born. The burger became a national treasure and is the ugly kissing cousin to the prettier version of how burgers are served today with the grilled onions on top.

I’ve added cheese and changed the onions to shallots which give it a bit of an extra bite. By adding the cheese we have onions between the meat and cheese as well as on top of the cheese.  The key to the flavor in my opinion is ALMOST burning the onions 😀

DEPRESSION BURGERS aka OKLAHOMA FRIED ONION BURGERS
Adapted from Cook’s Country

3 shallots, peeled, halved and thinly sliced
salt and pepper
1 pound ground beef
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon avocado oil
4-8 slices cheddar cheese
Mayonnaise
Ketchup and Mustard
Pickles
4 hamburger buns, toasted

  • Combine the onion slices and 1 teaspoon of salt in a large bowl, tossing to combine.
  • Transfer the onions to a colander and let sit for 30 minutes, tossing occasionally.
  • Transfer the onions to a clean dish towel, gather the edges together and squeeze out as much liquid as you can from the onions. Be sure to do this over the sink since the onions will have quite a bit of liquid in them.
  • Divide the onions into 4 separate mounds on a rimmed baking sheet.
  • Form the beef into 4 lightly packed balls.
  • Place the beef balls on top of the onion mounds and flatten the beef firmly using your palm so the onion adheres to the beef. The patties should measure 4 inches in diameter.
  • Season the beef generously with salt and pepper.
  • Melt the butter with the oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat.
  • Using a large spatula, transfer the patties to the skillet, onion side down. Cook for 6-8 minutes, until the onions turn a deep golden brown and begin to crisp around the edges.
  • Flip the burgers, then increase the heat to high and cook until well browned on the second side, about 2 minutes.
  • Add 1 or 2 slices of cheese to each burger and allow to melt.
  • Add mayo, mustard and pickles to the top buns, then place each burger on a bottom buns.
  • Serve immediately.

MOJO (CUBAN) CHICKEN TOSTADAS

MOJO (CUBAN) CHICKEN TOSTADAS

4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
2 tablespoons avocado oil
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1 can black beans
1 romaine heart, washed and shredded
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped fine
1 large orange, juiced
2 limes, juiced
1 small red onion
1 avocado, sliced thin and seasoned
1 clove garlic, minced
2 + 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon oregano
corn tortillas, fried crisp

  • Drain and rinse black beans well.
  • Halve the onion and slice one half of it into thin rings. Dice the other half. Keep separate.
  • Mix together the cumin, paprika and oregano. Divide in half.

 

  • In a small bowl add the onion ring slices.
  • Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the vinegar, sprinkle with salt, toss together and let sit for 10 minutes.
  • In another small bowl mix half the seasoning mixture with the other 2 tablespoons of vinegar, the orange juice and half the lime juice.

 

  • Generously season chicken pieces with salt and pepper.
  • In a large skillet heat avocado oil until shimmering over medium high heat.
  • Add chicken breasts and sear on both sides until cooked through.
  • Remove chicken to plate and rest.

 

  • Add diced onion pieces and half the garlic to the skillet, sautéing until fragrant.
  • Add black beans, remaining garlic and one half of the spice mixture. Cook 3-5 minutes until soft and heated through.
  • Add half of lime juice and season to taste with salt and pepper. Remove pan from heat and set aside.

 

  • Shred chicken and place in a mixing bowl with half the orange juice mixture.
  • Pour the other half of the juice mixture over the shredded lettuce and top with the cilantro. Toss to coat.

 

  • Place a tortilla on a plate.
  • Top with a bit of the pickled onions followed by a handful of the lettuce mixture.
  • Add a spoonful of the beans followed by a spoonful of the shredded chicken and top with avocado slices.
  • ENJOY

HAWAIIAN STIR FRY PINEAPPLE BOATS

I’m really missing my favorite grocery store from Texas, but have found my new local grocer is having some beautiful produce. (BTW My favorite grocery store and my neighbor are ALL that I’m missing from Texas 😀 ) The pineapple in particular has been PERFECT and perpetually on sale.

HAWAIIAN STIR FRY PINEAPPLE BOATS – serves 2
1/2 pound pork tenderloin and center cut boneless pork chops, cut into bite sized pieces
1+ cup snap peas, cleaned and halved
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon FRESH grated ginger
1/3 cup diced red pepper
1 small bunch green onions, thinly sliced keeping whites and greens separate
1 FRESH pineapple, halved and prepared for boats
1/2 cup rice, prepared to package directions
6 ounce can of pineapple juice (I often use pineapple orange)
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
2 teaspoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons PACKED brown sugar
1 tablespoon dry sherry
2 tablespoons avocado oil
2 teaspoons sweet and spicy chili sauce (I use MAGGI’s)
FRESH ground sea salt, to taste
1/3 cup water
1 tablespoon butter

  • Halve pineapples and cut meat out leaving 1/2 inch all the way around. Cut pineapple into bite sized pieces.
  • Whisk together the pineapple juice, vinegar and cornstarch until smooth.
  • Add the brown sugar, sherry, chili sauce and FRESH ground salt.
  • In a large skillet heat avocado oil over medium-high heat.
  • Sear pork until browned and nearly cooked through, about 5 minutes.
  • Remove pork and allow to rest.
  • Wipe out pan and return to heat.
  • Add water and peas, cover and steam 2-3 minutes. DRAIN.
  • Return pan to heat and add butter.
  • Add ginger, garlic, onion whites and bell pepper, stirring until fragrant.
  • Add pineapple pieces and sauce, simmering a few minutes until thickened.
  • Fold in pork pieces.
  • Put a thin layer of rice into each pineapple boat.
  • Portion pork mixture into boats and top with scallion greens.
  • ENJOY!

PINEAPPLE PEPPER LIME CHICKEN

PINEAPPLE PEPPER LIME CHICKEN
3 pounds chicken thighs and drumsticks (or any combo you like)
2 limes, juiced (about 1/4 cup)
3/4 cup pineapple pepper preserves
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste

  • In a small saucepan combine preserves and lime juice and heat until melted and well blended.
  • Sprinkle chicken pieces with FRESH ground salt and pepper.
  • Heat grill to medium.
  • GENEROUSLY spray grill grates with non-stick spray.
  • Grill chicken 15-20 minutes or about 175° internal temperatures. Turn Occasionally and baste generously during the last 5 minutes with the sauce.
  • Serve with remaining sauce.

HONEY SOY PORK with PEANUT NOODLES

HONEY SOY PORK with PEANUT NOODLES

2 boneless pork chops
3 green onions, thinly sliced, whites and greens separated
1/4 + 1/4 cup Bragg’s liquid aminos
1/8 + 1/8 cup rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
1/2 pound bok choy, halved, washed and cut into 1 inch pieces, keeping bulbs and greens separate
6 pieces spaghetti
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1/2 cup shredded red cabbage1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
Sriracha, to taste
1/4 cup chopped peanuts
2 tablespoons avocado oil
FRESH ground salt and pepper, to taste

  • In a large Ziploc bag or baking dish combine 1/4 cup liquid aminos, 1/8 cup rice wine vinegar and 2 tablespoons honey.
  • Pat dry pork chops and add to marinade, turning to coat.

 

  • Cook noodles per package directions, about 8 minutes to al dente’.
  • Drain and rinse in cold water.
  • Transfer to a large bowl and set aside.

 

  • Whisk together the peanut butter, 1/4 cup liquid aminos, 1/8 cup rice wine vinegar and 1 tablespoon water until smooth. Set aside.

 

  • In a large pan over medium high heat add sesame oil until shimmering.
  • Add bok choy bulb pieces and green onion whites, sautéing 3-4 minutes until soft.
  • Add cabbage and bok choy leaves, cooking a couple minutes more until leaves wilt.
  • Season to taste and transfer to bowl with noodles.

 

  • Remove pork from marinade. and reserve 2 tablespoons.
  • Return pan to heat and add 2 tablespoons of avocado oil.
  • When shimmering add pork chops and sear on both sides until cooked through, about 3 minutes per side.
  • Transfer to plate and let rest 5 minutes.
  • Add reserved marinade to peanut sauce and whisk well.

 

  • Add peanuts and peanut sauce to noodle bowl, tossing to coat.
  • Thinly slice pork chops.
  • Plate noodles and vegetables.
  • Top with pork slices.
  • Garnish with green onion tops.

MAPLE ROSEMARY GLAZED PORK CHOPS

MAPLE ROSEMARY GLAZED PORK CHOPS – serves 2

2 bone-in pork chops
1-2 sprigs rosemary, stems removed and chopped fine
2 large green onions, sliced thin
1/2 pound fingerling potatoes, cut into bite sized pieces
1 GALA apple, peeled, cored and diced small
FRESH ground salt and pepper, to taste
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon champagne vinegar
2 tablespoons PURE maple syrup
1 tablespoon chicken bouillon
1 tablespoon butter

  • Pat pork chops dry.
  • Generously season chops to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Melt butter in skillet over medium high heat.
  • Add potatoes, sauteing several minutes until starting to soften and turn golden.
  • Add scallion, sautéing slightly.
  • Add chops and cook until browned and cooked through, 2-3 minutes per side.
  • Remove from pan and keep warm.
  • Reduce heat to medium.
  • Stir in rosemary, 1 tablespoon of the vinegar, maple syrup and bouillon, stirring to blend well. Let simmer until thickened, 1-2 minutes.
  • Add butter, blending well.
  • Taste and adjust seasoning.
  • Add apple pieces and cook a minute or two until beginning to soften.
  • Return chops to pan, turning to coat well.
  • Remove from heat and plate.
  • Garnish with scallion greens.
  • Serve.

CARAMELIZED GRILLED PINEAPPLE & CARNE ASADA ala CITRUS

These pineapple spears are coated in a buttery brown sugar apple cinnamon glaze that caramelizes on the grill! It also pairs perfectly with a citrus carne asada!

CARAMELIZED GRILLED PINEAPPLE Serves: 4-6
Adapted from the Recipe Critic, Alyssa

One large ripe pineapple cut into spears
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup butter, melted
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon apple pie spice

  • In a shallow baking dish lay the pineapple spears in a single layer pan.
  • Sprinkle lightly with cinnamon.
  • Whisk together the butter, brown sugar and apple pie spice. It needs to be thin enough to easily pour over the pineapple – microwave a few seconds if necessary.
  • Pour over top of the pineapple spears.
  • Grill for about 7-10 minutes or until it is starting to turn golden brown and has gorgeous grill marks.
  • Brush with excess sauce from the dish before serving.

According to Wikipedia Carne asada is a roasted beef dish, literally meaning “roasted meat”[1][2]. The dish mainly consists of pieces or thin cuts of beef (e.g. flank steak, skirt steak), sometimes marinated, sometimes lightly salted or rubbed with salt, pepper and/or spices, and then grilled. It can be eaten alone, with side dishes, chopped and eaten as tacos, or chopped and used as filler for tortas, burritos, etc. It is commonly accompanied with guacamole, salsa, beans, and grilled scallions and tortillas.

The dish is commonly prepared in the northern parts of Mexico (in the states of Baja California, Baja California Sur, Coahuila, Sonora, Sinaloa, Chihuahua, Nuevo León, and Tamaulipas) as well as in the American Southwest (especially Texas and New Mexico). It can be found as the main ingredient in tacos, tortas, burritos and fajitas, or is simply served as a stand-alone. It is sold at Mexican meat markets called “carnicerias” in the American Southwest; especially those states with Mexican/Mexican-American enclaves.
When purchasing carne asada from meat markets, consumers have two options available to them regarding the amount of preparation the steak has undergone pre-purchase: preparada, marinated meat as described above, serving as a time-saver for the home cook but typically at higher cost; and no preparada, unprepared meat, allowing for a home cook to create one’s own marinade. I buy unprepared meat and doctor my own.
All my pictures are before as we’re having it for dinner tonight. I’ll add an after picture later.


CARNE ASADA
2-3 pounds flank or skirt steak, sliced THIN
1 medium Vidalia onion, sliced thin
2 lemons, 1 sliced thin, 1 wedged for squeezing
1 lime, sliced thin
1 orange, sliced thin
1/3 cup champagne vinegar
2 teaspoons minced garlic, jar
1 teaspoon FRESH ground sea salt
1 teaspoon FRESH ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon Hungarian paprika
  • Soak the meat in the vinegar for an hour or so.
  • Remove meat from vinegar and dry on paper towels.
  • Sift together all the seasonings and rub into the meat on both sides.
  • Layer the meat into a container alternating with the slices of lemon, limes, oranges and onions squeezing lemon juice on each layer as you go.
  • Let marinate for overnight or a day or so.
  • Grill on a VERY hot grill to desired doneness, 2-3 minutes per side.
  • Serve with warm tortillas, Fresh Guacamole and Fresh Garden Salsa.

BALSAMIC BROCCOLI, BRUSSELS SPROUTS and CHICKEN SAUTE’

We recently took a walking tour of food in Carmel with several family members thanks to my wonderful nephew and his wife.  Staci, the owner, was super personable guide with a GREAT sense of humor. We had a FANTASTIC time and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Staci went above and beyond with her knowledge of the Carmel area and the businesses she was introducing us to. The businesses and foods were well balanced to accommodate your palette and your walking pace. We highly recommend this tour on your next visit to the Carmel area.

One of the stops was to an olive oil company, Trio Carmel. One of the other stops was to a Carmel Honey Company that was begun by an enterprising young bee keeper for a 5th grade project that became a family business. Personally I can’t stand olive oil, but they had some wonderful flavored vinegars that I purchased (Peach and Cranberry Pear). Add in some of the wonderful honey and from there this recipe was born.

This is the perfect recipe for a summer’s evening. There are tons of fresh vegetables sautéed with flavorful balsamic vinegar and topped with roasted cashews, golden raisins and shaved Parmesan cheese. Plus one pan and NO oven! If it’s winter time and you WANT to use your oven, roast the veggies instead before tossing all together.

The beauty of this recipe is that with all the choices of flavored vinegars these days you can easily change up your flavor palette with this versatile recipe! I had some gorgeous fresh peaches that I tossed in also.

BALSAMIC BROCCOLI, BRUSSELS SPROUTS and CHICKEN SAUTE’ serves 4
Author – Tamy

3/4 pound Brussels sprouts, cleaned and halved
2 broccoli crowns, cleaned and chopped
1 cup rotisserie chicken pieces
2 tablespoons Avocado oil
1 tablespoon butter
FRESH ground sea salt
FRESH ground black pepper
2-3 tablespoons Peach balsamic vinegar or  Cranberry Pear balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon Bragg’s liquid aminos
1-2 tablespoon Meadowfoam honey
1/3 cup roasted cashews
1/3 cup golden raisins
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese

  • Heat LARGE skillet over medium high heat.
  • Add Avocado oil and butter.
  • When melted, add Brussels sprouts and broccoli, sautéing 2-3 minutes. We like our Brussels sprouts a bit crispy so I usually add them first and get a crispy edge before I add the broccoli.
  • Add 2 tablespoons water. Cover and cook for a minutes or two.
  • Add Balsamic vinegar and liquid aminos and saute’ a minute or two more.
  • Add honey and stir to coat.
  • Add chicken pieces, raisins and cashews and saute’ a couple minutes more until heated through.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Drizzle with a touch more honey and Parmesan cheese before you serve.
  • ENJOY!

APPLE CIDER PAN GRAVY PORK CHOPS

This recipe is good year round, but tastes especially GREAT during the fall when apples are at their prime.

APPLE CIDER PAN GRAVY PORK CHOPS
2 tablespoons avocado oil
4 3/4 inch pork chops
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon honey
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon apple pie spice
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
3-4 sprigs FRESH thyme
1 cup apple cider
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons water
thin sliced apples,  for garnish SEE NOTE

  • Generously sprinkle pork chops with salt and pepper.
  • Heat avocado oil in large skillet over medium heat.
  • Sear pork chops on both sides.
  • In a small bowl whisk together the honey and apple pie spice.
  • Add in garlic and apple cider until well blended.
  • Pour over pork chops.
  • Reduce heat to medium low, cover and simmer 5 minutes.
  • Remove pork chops to a plate, tent and let stand 5 minutes.
  • Whisk together the cornstarch and water.
  • Add to pan gravy and whisk until well blended.
  • Add heavy cream and whisk to blend.
  • Increase heat and bring to a SLOW boil until desired consistency is reached.
  • Serve pork chops with apple stuffing, your favorite vegetable and top with pan gravy.

NOTE:

  • You can serve with thin sliced apple slices or you can use a little butter and apple pie spice to saute the apple slices for a sweet treat.
  • Many times I prefer to sear the pork chops for 3 minutes on each side over high heat and then place them into a 400° oven for 6-8 minutes to finish cooking while I prepare the veggies. I find that the pork chops stay moist and juicy this way.

APPLE STUFFING
2 honey crisp apples, peeled,, cored and chopped
3 Kaiser rolls, chopped small
1 large carrot, chopped
1 small bunch green onions, halved and sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 + 2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup apple cider
2 packets pork flavored top ramen seasoning packets

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons of butter in skillet on medium high heat.
  • Add carrots and saute 2-3 minutes until they begin to soften.
  • Add green onions and garlic sauteing until fragrant.
  • Add apples, sauteing until beginning to soften.
  • Whisk together the pork seasoning packets into the apple cider.
  • Add the remaining butter and apple cider mixture to pan.
  • Fold in bread pieces, stirring to coat.
  • Cook until liquid is completely absorbed.
  • Fold into a casserole and bake 15 minutes or so to heat completely through.

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CHICKEN in BACON RANCH GRAVY ala SLOW COOKER

This is a wonderful fall or winter recipe!

SLOW COOKER CHICKEN with BACON GRAVY serves 4
adapted from Sarah Olson

1.5 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
FRESH ground pepper, to taste
4 sprigs FRESH thyme
2 bunches green onions, sliced thin
2-4 cloves garlic, minced
6-8 slices bacon, diced and cooked crisp
1 Pioneer country gravy packet dry mix DO NOT PREPARE PER PACKAGE
1 Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing packet dry mix DO NOT PREPARE PER PACKAGE
2 1/4 cups water
1 cup heavy cream

  • Spray slow cooker with non-stick spray.
  • Add the chicken to the slow cooker.
  • Generously salt and pepper the chicken breasts.
  • Add the garlic, green onions and bacon.
  • Lay thyme sprigs on top.
  • Whisk together the gravy mix and ranch dressing packets water until smooth.
  • Pour the gravy mixture over the chicken.
  • Cover and cook on HIGH for 3 hours without opening the lid during the cooking time.
  • Remove the chicken and shred with 2 forks.
  • Stir heavy cream into gravy mixture until well blended.
  • Return chicken to gravy mixture and stir to coat well.
  • Serve over mashed potatoes.

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CHEESY ARTICHOKE CHICKEN

CHEESY ARTICHOKE CHICKEN serves 2

2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, pounded thin (1/8 inch)
6 ounce jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained WELL and chopped small
1/4 cup chopped flat leaf parsley
1 clove garlic, minced
2 green onions, sliced thin
4 thin slices Provolone cheese
2 tablespoons avocado oil
FRESH ground salt and pepper, to taste

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • In a small bowl combine artichoke heart pieces, parsley, garlic and green onions.
  • Generously season chicken pieces with salt and pepper.
  • Top each chicken breast with 2 cheese slices.
  • Top cheese with artichoke mixture and spread evenly.
  • Roll up chicken and secure with toothpicks.
  • In an ovenproof skillet heat avocado oil and turning frequently sear chicken bundles until golden.
  • Place skillet in preheated oven until cooked through, about 15 minutes.
  • Let stand 5 minutes.
  • Slice into roulades and serve with pasta or mashed potatoes.

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CHILI LIME SALMON with PAN ROASTED STREET CORN

CHILI LIME SALMON with PAN ROASTED STREET CORN serves 4
These flavors blend together so well to create a Cajun fajita mix with crispy roasted peppers that mix with the street corn spice edge to have a party in your mouth all while being completely healthy.

CHILI LIME SALMON
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (or juice of 2 limes)
1/4 cup fresh finely chopped parsley
2 tablespoons avocado oil
2 tablespoons water
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons red chili flakes (adjust to your preference of spice)
1 teaspoon ground Cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons FRESH ground sea salt
1 tablespoon QUALITY honey
4 salmon fillets of even sizes
1/2 pound mini sweet peppers, de-seeded and cut into rings
1 small Vidalia onion, cut into wedges

  • Preheat oven to broil.
  • Arrange oven shelf about 6 inches below broiler.
  • Line a baking sheet with foil and coat with non-stick spray; set aside.
Whisk together the lime juice, minced parsley, avocado oil, water, garlic, chilli flakes, cumin and salt until well blended.
  • Add the honey and whisk again until the honey is well blended with the rest of the ingredients.
  • Toss peppers and onions with half of the honey mixture.
  • Arrange the salmon fillets on baking sheet.
  • With a slotted spoon remove peppers and onions arranging around the salmon fillets in a single layer.
  • Pour the honey mixture evenly over the salmon fillets.
  • Broil about 10 minutes until the peppers are just beginning to char at the edges and the salmon is cooked to your liking.
  • Remove from the oven and serve immediately with lime wedges and remaining honey sauce for added flavor.

While salmon pan is broiling, prepare corn. BUT, BE SURE TO KEEP YOUR EYE ON THE SALMON TO AVOID BURNING.

PAN ROASTED STREET CORN
4 whole Corn Cobs, husked and kernels cut from the cob
2 tablespoons Butter, softened
4 tablespoons Mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Bragg’s liquid aminos
1 pinch Cayenne
1 pinch each FRESH ground Sea Salt and Black Pepper
1/2 cup crumbled Cotija Cheese
1 bunch Cilantro, chopped

  • In a large skillet over medium-high heat melt butter.
  • Add corn kernels, sautéing until beginning to caramelize.
  • Whisk together the mayonnaise, liquid aminos, cayenne, salt and pepper.
  • Drizzle mayo mixture over corn kernels, stirring to coat.
  • Cook 2-3 minutes more.
  • Sprinkle with cotija cheese and cilantro.
  • Serve immediately.