Spicy Turkey & Avocado Hash

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I’ve never been a HUGE fan of breakfasts and I’m not too sure why. I like eggs, I like toast, I like cereal. But there is just something about eating those things in the morning that just doesn’t do it for me. Take me to brunch and I’ll order lunch. Breakfast for dinner? GREAT idea. So for dinner I had a craving for breakfast and whipped up this quick spicy turkey hash. Save the leftover ground turkey and veggies and fry an egg on it the next day and the flavors are even better!

We wrapped ours in low carb tortillas and it made for a GREAT breakfast-for-dinner burrito. OH! I’ll also teach you how to fry an egg PERFECTLY (yes, I am serious).

What you’ll need:

1/2 lb. ground turkey
1 jar salsa
1/2 purple onion, minced
2 large bell peppers, chopped
4 eggs
kosher salt & pepper

2 ripe avocados
juice of 1 lime and 1/2 lemon
kosher salt & pepper

1. Heat a large sauteé pan over a medium flame and cook the onions until they start to become golden around the edges (5 minutes). Add in the peppers and cook for anther 5 minutes.

2. Break up the ground turkey using a wooden spoon and cook with the peppers and onion. Once the turkey is done, add in 1/2 jar (plus more if you like spicy) of the salsa and let it cook for about 5 minutes. Keep stirring and cooking for another few minutes until it becomes thick and spicy.

3. While the turkey mixture is cooking away, smash together the avocados, citrus, and a little more salt and pepper. Set aside to use as a topping.

4. Now, for the fried egg. PAY ATTENTION. ON TOP of the turkey hash, crack the eggs (pretend its a square and crack one in each corner). Cover and cook for ONE MINUTE. Set a timer!. Remove top and SERVE IMMEDIATELY (the eggs will continue to cook as it sits so if you let it sit for more than a minute or so, they won’t be runny.).

5. Top with the avocado mash and wrap in a tortilla and eat!

enjoy :)

Oyster Shooters

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I just read an article about thalassophobia, fear of the sea. And it’s true. I will go in just as far as I can see my feet and make sure there are no fish trying to kill me. When it comes to eating, I’ll eat some fish. Salmon, sure. Tuna, why not. Oyster? Go away. Slime and goo and just… nope. But for Mother’s Day my mom wanted a seafood tower for dinner. So I called up one of our favorite seafood restaurants and just about everything I don’t like to eat was on the list. It’s obviously easier to cook something if it’s something you’re willing to eat. Oyster shooters? Nay. So I honestly had to wing this one and the result was pretty great. Everyone gobbled them up and there weren’t any left! Either they liked them or they were just trying to be nice.

Now, I must warn you, they’re SPICY. I went a little overboard on the horseradish so please adjust that to your liking. This recipe is for 8 shooters.

What you’ll need:

8 oysters, shucked
1/4 cup vodka
1/4 cup cocktail sauce
1 tbs. horseradish
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. pepper
8 lemon wedges
8 shot glasses

1. Place the 1 oyster in each shot glass. Garnish the rim of each with a lemon wedge. Refrigerate before serving.

2. In a small bowl, mix together the other ingredients. Pour over the mix oysters when you’re ready to serve.

enjoy :)

beauty obsessions

Recently Updated5So summer is just around the corner… again, and a few things come to mind: 1. You need to get your skin in tip-top shape, and 2. You need to get your hair in tip-top shape. I’m usually pretty consistent with my beauty regiment every day and what products I use. If I find something I like I’ll use it until I have to add water to it to dilute it so I don’t have to buy another bottle (come on, I’m a girl on a budget!). I’ve always been a stickler for the It’s a 10 Miracle Leave in Product until I stumbled upon the spray specifically for blondes. It has a little bit of the “purple” stuff in it (whatever that is) that gets rid of the brassy and keeps your hair super shiny. I also absolutely LOVE this moisturizer from Origins. One use and my skin is smooth and hydrated like the day I was born.

To me nothing completes a look quite like a spritz of your favorite perfume, like this classic from Clinique (when I wear it I think I’m back in high school), and this PERFECT pink lipstick from none other than the incomparable Chanel.

spicy toasted chickpeas

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Don’t even start with me on how it’s been about 6 months since I last blogged. It’s unacceptable, I know. So please let me make it up to you with this incredible snack my aunt introduced me to.

I’ve always had a weird texture issue. Cottage cheese? Go away. Kiwi? Disgusting. Shrimp? What is wrong with you? So needless to say I’ve never been a fan of chickpeas (btw, did you know that chickpeas and garbanzo beans are the same thing?! I didn’t…) in any form besides hummus. But a few weeks ago my aunt gave me a few of these to try and I’ll tell you I was definitely skeptical. But about an hour later I had eaten half of the jar (sorry, Donna!). They’re ADDICTING! The crunch, the spice, the everything!

You can really add any spices/flavors you want to it but I was in a spicy mood today so I stuck with cayenne pepper. This is a fantastic snack you can quickly (well, sort of) whip up and is a definite crowd pleaser.

What you’ll need:

3 cans garbanzo beans
2 tsp. olive oil
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. garlic salt
1. Preheat the oven to 450*. Rinse your garbanzo beans in a colander and lay on a baking sheet to dry for about 10 minutes. Blot with a paper towel to try and get rid of excess liquid.

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2. Transfer beans to a large bowl and toss together with the oil, salt, cayenne pepper, and garlic salt.

3. Spread on a baking sheet and bake for 30-45 minutes (start checking at 30 minutes, then check every 5 minutes; you want to catch them before they start to get too dark, they’ll burn right after that point!).

4. Let cool for 10 minutes, then start snacking.

5. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

enjoy :)

Gravlax and Cucumber “Pops”

IMG_5527I have to admit that my favorite part of dinner parties is always the appetizers. However, after the 10 cheese platters and fried whatevers I pretty much just want to pass out. One of our go-to appetizers is always gravlax and some sort of veggie (or on Hanukkah, latkes). On Thanksgiving, I made these little skewers with cucumber, gravlax, and sour cream. They’re light, fresh, and don’t fill you up enough to turn you away from the main event. I’m a big, big fan of dill so I topped them with a tiny sprig of fresh dill and it makes all of the flavors come together. Ina Garten always says that when you have a dinner party, try to either make as much ahead of time as you can so you don’t miss your own party. As always, you certainly do not have to make your own gravlax but it really helps you control the contents. There is absolutely nothing wrong with smoked salmon from the store, but I honestly can’t pronounce half of the ingredients so I try to stick to making my own as often as I can. These can be made a few hours ahead of time and popped in the fridge until you’re about ready to serve.

What you’ll need:

2 hothouse cucumbers
1 lb. gravlax (or smoked salmon)
2 tbs. sour cream (or non-fat Greek yogurt)
1 tsp. fresh chopped dill
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1. Slice your cucumbers into 1/4 inch slices (thick enough to hold up the salmon).

2. Top with the salmon, a tiny dollop of sour cream (or yogurt), and finish with an itty bitty sprinkle of fresh dill.

3. Poke with a toothpick and either serve immediately or refrigerate for a few hours.

enjoy :)

Pumpkin Pie Almonds

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So I’ve been trying to think of any make-ahead meals/apps/snacks I can make to keep our Thanksgiving guests busy while we cook and I found this amazing recipe for Pumpkin Pie Almonds from Knead to Cook. The hypnotizing aromas that come from the spices will make your house smell like a mecca for cinnamon and sugar. They’re great little snacks and will be an even better appetizer for the big show (I know they’re not exactly the healthiest but swap out sugar or simply syrup for agave and you’re half-way there). What I did differently than the recipe above was add a little extra vanilla extract (I can’t help it, I love it), and I used Fleur de Sel (a French Sea Salt) rather than kosher or regular sea salt. Make them the day before and store in an airtight container until you’re ready to serve.

What you’ll need:
2 cups raw almonds
3 tsp. of ground cinnamon
2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice seasoning (you can find it ANYWHERE right now)
3-4 tbs. organic agave nectar
1 tbs. of vanilla extract
Fleur de Sel (French sea salt)
1. Preheat your oven to 325*. In a large bowl, mix the almonds, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, agave, and vanilla. Make sure every almond is evenly coated with the agave and spices.
2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper (if you can, try to avoid foil for this. The almonds WILL stick to the foil) and lay out the almonds in one single layer.
3. Dust the sea salt over the almonds and bake for 18-20 minutes.
4. Let cool for at least 30 minutes before serving!
enjoy :)

Herb Roasted Turkey

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One of the most intimidating things to make at any holiday meal is the turkey. I’ll admit that I have been pretty scared in the past and backed out making the turkey because of my fear of ruining the entire meal. I mean it’s the main event, it’s the star of the show, and do you REALLY want that pressure sitting on your shoulders? It has taken me a few years to muster up the courage but 2 years ago, I went for it and made the turkey. I’m going to be honest and tell you it was pretty amazing! I started preparing the bird the night before by brining overnight with some kosher salt and rosemary. If you don’t know what brining is, Martha Stewart has a great brining lesson that is easy to follow. Now, given that we had 25 people over for Thanksgiving, we had 2 turkeys: my roasted turkey, and Eliot’s smoked turkey so I knew I had to knock mine out of the park. I have to say that this was pretty much the BEST turkey that I’ve ever had!

Obviously I like the majority of the foods that I cook but this really was FANTASTIC! The overnight brining made it super moist and the herbed butter that I smothered it with was just perfect. I used the same herbed butter as I did on my Mary’s Chicken. Every 20 minutes I basted the turkey to maximize the crunchiness of the skin and moisture of the turkey meat. ***Please follow cooking instructions EXACTLY for a turkey. Nothing will make you sicker than an uncooked turkey*** I use unsalted butter because I want to control the salt content in my foods, tons of fresh herbs, and garlic made for a divine marinade. Now, of course you don’t HAVE to use Mary’s turkey (Mary is NOT a person, it’s the BRAND) but it is just a really wonderful quality of poultry that I simply will not substitute on a holiday as important as Thanksgiving. 


Here is a guide for how long to roast a turkey in a regular oven, preheated to 350* (every oven cooks DIFFERENTLY!!! Use a meat thermometer to see when your bird is at 165*). This guide is for FRESH (NOT defrosted) turkey, generally about 10-15 minutes per pound. Here is a great list of guidelines from Food Network.

WEIGHT COOK TIME (UNSTUFFED) COOK TIME (STUFFED)
6-10 lbs. 1½ -2 hrs. 1¾-2½ hrs.
10-18 lbs. 2-2½ hrs. 2½-3¼ hrs.
18-22 lbs. 2½-3 hrs. 3¼-3¾ hrs.
22-24 lbs. 3-3½ hrs. 3¾-4¼ hrs.

What you’ll need:

brined turkey (adjust the ingredients below depending on the size of your turkey)
1 stick salted butter (at room temperature)
2 tbs. fresh rosemary
1 tbs. fresh thyme
1 1/2 tbs. fresh sage
6-8 whole garlic cloves
1 meat thermometer
1 orange
3 full sprigs of rosemary (separate from the above amount)
1 LARGE roasting pan

1. Preheat your oven to 350*. Remove the giblets from the turkey. In a food processor, add the herbs and garlic and chop until they’re minced.
2. Add the butter and process until it is all fully incorporated and forms a paste.
3. Rub the inside of the turkey with the orange and let the orange stay inside while the turkey roasts. Loosen the skin of the turkey and place the full sprigs of rosemary under the skin (try not to rip the skin, we all know it’s the best part of the turkey).
4. Cover the ENTIRE turkey with the herb butter (like, the WHOLE thing).
5. Place the turkey in a roasting pan (MAKE SURE IT FITS!!!). Start roasting.
***Baste the turkey every 20 minutes***

6. Following the cooking guidelines above and after the turkey reaches 165* internal temperature, remove from the pan and let the turkey rest for AT LEAST 30 minutes (let the juices redistribute).

7. Let someone who KNOWS how to slice a turkey do so.
8. Serve on a large platter with your favorite holiday side dishes.

enjoy :)