{Recipe} Indian-Spiced Chicken Burgers with Cumin-Yogurt Sauce

Indian Spiced Chicken Burgers

The summer is winding down, but there is still plenty of time to grill up a great burger! While I love a big, meaty cheeseburger, sometimes it’s fun to change things up a bit. Today I’m sharing with you a recipe for chicken burgers with an Indian twist. Don’t skip making the Cumin-Yogurt sauce — it’s what really makes the burgers stand out!

Indian Spiced Chicken Burgers with Cumin-Yogurt Sauce
A delicious alternative to traditional burgers
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  1. 1 package of ground chicken breast (approx. 1 lb.)
  2. 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  3. 2 jalapenos, seeded and diced
  4. 2-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
  5. 2 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice (from 1 lemon)
  6. 1/2 tsp. red chili powder
  7. 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  8. 1/4 tsp. ground turmeric
  9. 1 Tbsp. ground coriander
  10. salt and pepper
  11. mini pitas
  12. chopped onions and tomato
Cumin-yogurt sauce
  1. 1/2 cup plain low-fat yogurt
  2. 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  3. handful of chopped cilantro
  4. salt and pepper
  1. Prepare the cumin-yogurt sauce first by combining the yogurt, cumin, and cilantro in a bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside to allow the flavors to intensify.
For the chicken burgers
  1. Combine the ground chicken, scallions, jalapenos, ginger, lemon juice, chili powder, cumin, turmeric, coriander, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl. Stir everything together really well then let the mixture sit for about 10 minutes.
  2. Gently form burger patties. I made mine more oblong in shape to better fit inside the pitas. Season the patties with a little salt and pepper if you desire and then grill until the ground chicken is opaque throughout the burger. Do NOT undercook the burgers.
  3. Cut four pitas in half and warm them either on the top rack of your grill or in a toaster oven. Don’t overheat them or else they’ll get too crispy. Place two patties in each pita half along with diced onion and tomato. Add a healthy dollop of the cumin yogurt sauce and serve.
  1. You can grill these outdoors, but they also are delicious broiled or cooked in a frying pan. Use whatever method is most convenient for you.
Pure Sugar https://www.puresugar.net/

 I’m linking up with Sandra at Diary of a SAHM

because it’s Cooking Thursday!

{Recipe} Masala Chili


I don’t even know how I came up with this recipe. I guess I was thinking of both my favorite chicken curry recipe, but also Indian-spiced chicken meatballs and somehow this happened. And I’m glad it did because it was easy and delicious. And quick. And perfect for this rainy day. Basically, I just started throwing things into a pot and tasting and at some point I decided “OK, this is actually good!”

Although we really enjoyed this recipe as written here, I feel like it’s missing something. Maybe some spinach? Maybe coconut milk instead of the yogurt? I don’t know… But it’s a starting point and I hope you play around with it. Let me know what adjustments you make and how you improve upon it!

Masala Chili
An Indian-spiced take on traditional chili.
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2 Tbsp. coconut oil or ghee
1 tsp. cumin seeds
1/2 c. diced onion
2 cloves of garlic, diced
1-2 chile peppers, diced (I used jalapenos because that’s what I had)
1-inch chunk of fresh ginger, shredded on a microplane
1 Tbsp. coriander
1/4 tsp. tumeric
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 Tbsp. curry powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 lb. ground chicken
1 15-oz. can of chick peas, drained and rinsed
1.5 c. tomato sauce
1/2 c. water
1 5 oz. container of plain yogurt
Cilantro (for garnish)
In a stock pot, melt the coconut butter or ghee and add the cumin seeds. When they start sizzling, add the onions, garlic, ginger, and peppers. Cook until soft and then add the coriander, tumeric, cumin, chili powder, curry powder, and salt.
Add ground chicken and cook through. Add chick peas, tomato sauce, and water. Simmer for 15-20 minutes until flavors have all combined.
Remove from heat. Stir in yogurt. Adjust seasonings if necessary. Serve with rice or naan. Garnish with fresh cilantro.
A side salad of freshly sliced cucumbers and onions with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice is an excellent accompaniment to this dish.


Linking up with: Cooking Thursday

{Recipe} Carrot Cake Jam

Carrot Cake Jam

Have you guys heard about food swaps? Apparently they’re the cool new thing. People all over the country are whipping up delicious things in their kitchens (or growing them in their backyards) and then swapping for other tasty goods with like-minded individuals. So when our library director put a food swap on our calendar, I was really excited to participate! The only thing: I wanted to bring something a little bit different.

A few years ago I nabbed a Better Homes & Garden canning magazine. It had a recipe for carrot cake jam that I fully intended to make and enter in the Dutchess County Fair. I don’t know what happened, but I never got around to it. Until yesterday.

Now, before I share this recipe, be warned: there is a ton of sugar in it. But it’s jam. And that’s the way it goes. I did use no-sugar pectin so in theory I could have reduced how much I used, but I didn’t.

OK. So, the first thing you need to do is start your water bath and sterilize your canning jars, new lids, and bands.

Next, combine 1 peeled diced pear (I used my food processor to make the pieces really tiny and save time), 2 cups of shredded carrots, a 16 oz. can of crushed pineapple in 100% juice (NOT heavy syrup), lemon juice (when canning, use bottled because it has a consistent pH), cinnamon, and nutmeg in a pot and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring often.

Carrot Cake Jam

Then, take the pot off the heat and sprinkle your pectin over the mixture. Stir it in.

Carrot Cake Jam

Now add your sugar. Just look the other way and dump in 4 cups of white granulated sugar and 2 cups of brown sugar. (Remember, you’re not eating massive amounts of this! Although then again… you might want to.) Stir it all up again.

Carrot Cake Jam

And like magic… you have jam!

Carrot Cake Jam

Bring it back up to a rolling boil and stir constantly for one minute while it’s boiling. Next, take it off the heat and add 1 Tsp. vanilla and (optional) 1/4 c. flaked coconut or raising. Because I am a wild woman, I added both.

Then ladle the jam into your sterilized jars, add the lid, snug on the band, and process for 10 minutes in a water bath canner.

IMPORTANT: Remember that processing time starts when the water returns to a big, angry boil. It does not start when you just put the jars into the pot.

I like to slather some cream cheese on (preferably homemade) bread and top it with the jam. I think it would also benefit from a sprinkling of walnuts.

This jam has been taste-tested and approved by my two boys, ages 7 and 10, so you know it’s good!


Carrot Cake Jam
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  1. 2 c. shredded carrots (about 4 medium)
  2. 1 medium pear, finely chopped
  3. 1 15-oz. can of crushed pineapple packed in 100% juice
  4. 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
  5. 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  6. 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
  7. 1 1 .75-oz package of pectin
  8. 4 c. granulated sugar
  9. 2 c. packed brown sugar
  10. 1 tsp. vanilla
  11. 1/4 c. flaked coconut or raisins (optional)
  1. Combine carrots, pears, pineapple, lemon juice, cinnamon, and nutmeg is a large pot and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat, cover, and allow the mixture to simmer for 20 minutes, giving it a stir often.
  2. Remove the pot from the heat and sprinkle the mixture with pectin. Stir until it dissolves.
  3. Bring the mixture back to a boil, stirring constantly. Add the granulated sugar and brown sugar. Return to a rolling boil. Boil the mixture for 1 minute while constantly stirring. Remove from heat and skim off any foam with a metal spoon. Add vanilla and coconut/raisins.
  4. Ladle the jam into hot, sterilized jars leaving 1/4″ headspace. Wipe the rims and adjust the lids. Process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Carefully remove the jars from the pot and allow to cool.
  1. Don’t forget to check the seals later on — you don’t want to store anything that hasn’t been properly processed!
Adapted from Adapted from Better Homes & Gardens Canning magazine, Summer 2011
Adapted from Adapted from Better Homes & Gardens Canning magazine, Summer 2011
Pure Sugar https://www.puresugar.net/



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{Recipe} Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Winter Salad

This is another one of those recipes that I kind of feel silly posting. It’s just so simple! But just in case you are still looking for a way to prepare Brussels sprouts that leaves them nutty and delicious… here it is!

My friend, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, was talking to me about Brussels sprouts last summer, and how he roasts an entire pan on Sunday and lives off of them all week because they are just so good. In addition to being a trained chef, he’s a kettle bell champ and he works at one of the Canyon Ranch resorts, so I definitely trust his opinion when it comes to healthy, delicious food. The first time I made these, my 10-year-old went back for seconds, so that’s just further proof of their yumminess!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts


Brussels sprouts
olive oil

Cut each sprout in half and toss into a bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Make sure the olive oil is on every sprout. Use a spoon or your hands to mix it all up. Then, place the sprouts on a foil-lined baking sheet. My friend suggested I put them cut-side down to get more of that roasty goodness. Place in a 400-degree oven and cook for about 25-30 minutes.

Now, what do you with them after this? Well, they are delicious as-is, or with a squeeze of lemon juice to kick it up a bit. Or you can toss them in a salad. I know — what? That sounds a little weird. Well, just trust me.

winter salad

Make yourself up a salad with your favorite greens, dried cranberries, walnuts, and a bit of goat cheese. Add the Brussels sprouts and toss with a bit of Balsamic vinaigrette. Delicious!!!

Many of us grew up knowing only boiled, tasteless Brussels sprouts. Give this method a try and I bet it will change your mind.

I’m linking up with Sandra at Diary of a SAHM
because it’s Cooking Thursday!

{Recipe} Overnight Bone Broth


I have admitted in the past that I am a soup snob. And it’s true. As a child, I was spoiled by my mom and grandmother with their delicious, homemade soups. Sure, there was the occasional bowl of Campbell’s Tomato, but the soups I remember from my childhood were full of barley, veggies, and homemade broth. The stuff in the cans or cartons just can’t compare, I don’t care which celebrity chef is on the label.

Making your own stock, or bone broth, is so ridiculously easy that it shouldn’t even need a recipe. In fact, I feel a little silly even writing about it. But I know people who have found it daunting to make homemade stock. If you’re making it on the stove top, it’s true — you need to pay a little bit of attention to it (only because you don’t want it to boil for too long). But there’s an easier way, perfect for even the laziest cook: just use your Crock Pot.

In the fall and winter, I roast a whole chicken twice a month on average. And often the weeks I don’t roast one on my own, I’ll pick up a rotisserie bird at Sam’s. After dinner, I just throw everything into my slow cooker and let it go. Here are the basic directions!

 Overnight Bone Broth

  • carcass from a roasted (or rotisserie) chicken (or turkey!), including skin, bones, and any resulting cooking liquid from roasting if you don’t use it for gravy
  • 1 medium onion
  • celery fronds or 1-2 celery stalks
  • 1-2 carrots
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp. black peppercorns
  • 1 Tbsp. vinegar (white or apple cider recommended)
  • water
Combine first 7 ingredients in your slow cooker. Cover with water (I usually fill it to 1-2 inches below the top of the crock). Cook on HIGH for 2 hours, then turn to LOW and cook overnight. Strain out and discards solids. The amount of broth you end up with will depend upon how much water you use and how hot your Crock Pot cooks, but you should end up with quite a bit.
I know, it’s super-technical and specific right? LOL! Seriously, you just throw it in the pot with water and cook it. Sometimes I add a few cloves of garlic. Sometimes I add oregano or other seasonings, depending on whether or not I have a specific use for the broth.

So now that you have all this yummy stock, what do you do with it? Well you could use some of it to make Spicy Black Bean Soup, Creamy Chicken (or Turkey) and Wild Rice Soup, or maybe some Lazy Stuffed Peppers? I seriously love soup and even though I eat it all summer, it is extra delicious and comforting in the fall and winter. Now I just need some butternut squash so I can make a big pot of autumn bisque!

I’m linking up with Sandra at Diary of a SAHM
because it’s Cooking Thursday!