Fish Tacos

DSC_6746 [1600x1060]I should probably back up a little.  I have been wondering what to do with my habaneros, drying and grinding works but I’ve got enough to last a good while.  I went in search of hot sauce recipes.  I saw plenty but this one had a nice picture.  I stuck fairly close to it and used peaches for the optional fruit because we had a few and I wanted to make it right now! It turned out pretty well:DSC_6725 [1600x1060]You can understand why I needed something to use it on!  I am sure I’ve seen recipes calling for a nice fruity sauce on fish so I set my sights on tacos.  There are plenty of recipes out there and tons of pictures so I started making a shopping list.  Green onions, red onions, red cabbage, white cabbage, mangoes, more garlic, tortillas, and etc etc.  Too late to use the mangoes in the hot sauce but they are prime ingredients for a nice salsa for a fish taco.  I made one sans cilantro, using the chopped mint from the patio, where an escaped mint planting is proving itself to be tougher than we are. DSC_6756 [1600x1060]I cut the habanero sauce with sour cream, shown here, but the sauce wasn’t that hot so it really wasn’t a problem.  Tasted pretty good on nachos, but the straight habanero sauce was great on them as well, just a little lip burn.  The green chunks in the little bowl on the left are from an experiment I ran with fresh tomatillos, using them in a sour cream based chipotle lime mixture with garlic.  It worked well, I think:DSC_6751 [1600x1060]Here it is, with a drizzle of the habanero hot sauce along with thinly sliced red cabbage.DSC_6750 [1600x1060]Here’s another corn tortilla based taco.  This one has a lime garlic sour cream topping along with the peachy hot sauce.  I used cod fillets for these, marinated for a couple hours and then quickly grilled.  I used this recipe with only minor changes for the marinade and method, and it was the inspiration for the garlic lime sour cream.  I used chipotle powder rather than the adobo sauce.DSC_6748 [1600x1060]A closer look at the mango salsa on this one in a flour tortilla.  It also has a bit of the garlic lime sour cream because I just could not stop myself from adding to it but I suspect it would have been a tad better with just the salsa and the hot sauce.  The flavor of the mango salsa would have been better showcased.  The mango salsa was very good, I finished it off with nacho chips for scoops.

Thursday Recipe Exchange: Burger Week, Part 2

Spicy Lamb Burgers by JeffreyW

I’m travelling again, but made sure to get this ready for you. I decided since I had so many burger recipes I would make a whole week of it. The posts include Cuban Burgers, Dill Burgers, Jalapeno Burgers, Focaccia Burgers and the recipes can be found here.

If burgers aren’t your thing, I also have a week of peach recipes at this link.

That should be enough to keep you busy until I get back. What are you grilling this weekend?

The featured recipes tonight are a Curried Turkey Burger from me and a Spicy Lamb Burger (pictured) from JeffreyW.

Curried Turkey Burgers

Always looking for new flavors to grill and since I love good pita bread, something that would go nicely with that.  Came up with this for a taste treat and a perfect way to use ground turkey since it can be bland if not well seasoned before grilling.  Serve with fresh corn on the cob and grilled eggplant.

  • 1 to 1-1/2 lb ground turkey
  • 3 tbsp plain yogurt
  • 1 tsp ground curry
  • 1/8 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 4 pita breads


In bowl combine all ingredients except bread and mix well. Form 4 patties and grill, broil or fry to desired doneness. Serve in pita bread. Ground mustard and mayonnaise make good toppings or a little Greek salad dressing, along with lettuce & tomatoes.

JeffreyW’s Spicy Lamb Burger

The recipe and more scrumptious looking photos can be found here.

Burger Week: Cuban Burgers

By the time we get to this Thursday’s recipe exchange you should have enough burger recipes to wow any backyard grilling party. Let’s get things started. And if you missed it, it all started here with 4 recipes.

Cuban Burgers

  • 1 to 1-1/2 lb lean ground beef
  • 2 tsp jerk seasoning (or more as desired)
  • salt & pepper
  • 4 slices Swiss cheese
  • ½ lb thinly sliced deli ham
  • ½ red onion, sliced in rings
  • 4 kaiser rolls, sliced
  • Dressing:
  • ½ tsp crushed garlic
  • ½ cup salad dressing or mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp dill pickle relish

small bowl

Mix ground beef, salt, pepper & jerk and create 4 patties. Fry or grill until cooked to desired doneness.

In bowl, mix garlic, mayo, mustard & dill relish. To make burgers, spread dressing on both sides of rolls, layer burger, swiss cheese, deli ham and onion. If you want you can place cheese on burgers before removing from heat and let it melt. And I almost always grill my onions, but that’s a personal preference.

And I think we’ll add this to the Back To Basic Series, too.  This week’s recipes can be found here.

Time for another white pizza

Because the last one was so good.  Minor tweaks to the recipe, different cheeses, a few more veggies – I had some leftovers from the nachos yesterday.I think there is some Swiss cheese in there too.  I was combining several partial bags of shredded cheese I found in the freezer.  The pizza edges are stuffed with mozzarella string cheese.  Lots of garlic in the white sauce.We used 3-1/2 cups of flour for this 14″ pizza, and the crust was huge.  And tasty!

Thursday Recipe Exchange: Roasting

Tried to fit some actual cooking into what has been a very busy week. The weather is very warm here right now, so I want to rush out and buy plants and get summer underway. But even 90 degree (!) temps can be deceptive – at this altitude they still recommend planting after Mother’s day to be safe. We’ve had 90 degrees to freezing whiplash before.

JeffreyW's Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Carrots and Parsnips

Roasting seemed wrong for our summer like weather, but most roasting recipes can be adapted for the gas-grill as needed, so I went with it. Roasting adds great flavor to foods, vegetables in particular. The slow cooking method adds a touch of sweetness and depth to almost any vegetable (current cooking crush Ming Tsai even has a recipe for roasting radicchio). For a quick dinner you can add vegetables tossed with olive oil to the bottom of a roasting pan, top with chicken breasts rubbed with oil and seasoned with salt & pepper and roast until the chicken is required temperature.  One pan dinner in about 35 minutes.

This week I roasted Asparagus topped with mozzarella and tonight’s sweet potato recipe. And here is the link to JeffreyW’s Brussel Sprouts, Carrots and Parsnips.

For dessert I made a batch of Orange Brownies.  I think for the weekend, though, I’m going to stick to stove top cooking and grilling.  What’s on your menu this week? Does weather affect what you want to cook?

Roasted Sweet Potatoes

  • 4 medium sweet potatoes, cut into 1 or 2 inch pieces
  • 2 medium red onions, cut in to 1-inch pieces
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • sprig of fresh time, cut into 4 pieces
  • salt & pepper (about 1/2 tsp of pepper or more, finely ground)

Preheat oven to 425. Combine all ingredients in baking dish. Toss to coat the veggies and bake for 35 minutes, until the sweet potatoes are tender and onions are soft.  

Next Week: Awesome Cookies

Mmm… Stir fried shrimp over noodles.

There are parsnips in there.  I just wanted to mention that up front.  Genius move?  Desperation?  I will mention that the broccoli I wanted to use was way past it’s use by date.  Other than the parsnips, this was a straightforward stir fry.  Cook the shrimp almost done in a bit of oil then set them aside and cook the veggies in the same pan, add a bit more oil as needed and toss in plenty of minced garlic.  The sauce is chicken stock with a slug of Chinese rice wine, a splash of sesame oil, grated ginger root, a couple spoonfuls of the chili garlic paste, some rice wine vinegar, and a tablespoon or two of corn starch.  I made nearly three cups total.  Add the sauce when the veggies are still crisp, and add back the semi cooked shrimp, stir to combine as the sauce thickens.  This will work over rice, I used noodles today.  The veggies?  Well, the parsnips I mentioned, and there are carrots that were also prepared with the special super secret peeler gadget, sliced celery, water chestnuts, and sliced red onion.


I thought it time to scratch my frittata itch this morning.  I had some odds and ends of veggies I needed to use and a frittata is the perfect vehicle for that.  I did open a package of fresh goat cheese to crumble over the top.

I took a few pictures in the available light just for fun, the ones of the skillet on the stove were taken with just the under cabinet florescent fixture for direct illumination along with what light there was from a cloudy morning outside the windows.  The camera did all the work and did a pretty good job of figuring it all out for me.  I’m liking the f/1.8 35mm lens quite a bit, too.  The plated meal was shot using the usual twin strobe bounce illumination.  With a white ceiling in the kitchen I can treat the whole table as a “light box”.


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Mmm…spicy lamb burgers

I dug a pound of lamb burger from the freezer this morning.  I bought a couple pounds of it a while back, made gyros out of the first pound.  Saw this recipe today while browsing around and remembered that I had some.  We had everything the recipe called for, feta included, but I wanted goat cheese so Mrs J picked some up while on a run to town this afternoon.  Oh, and the cilantro.  Yuck.  She didn’t get any of that, we both suffer from the “tastes like soap” syndrome.

I mixed this stuff up in a bowl and let is sit in the fridge for a couple of hours:

  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint leaves
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon sherry
  • 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

I broiled three patties from that mix in the toaster oven and went from there.  Some tomato slices and the same from a smallish red onion and here you go: