Thursday, June 28, 2012


My favorite thing about summer this year?  Time. 

Sunlight for a solid 15 hours a day.

No sports or camps to rush off to.  No homework to get done. 

This year more than ever before, I'm appreciating summer-TIME!

I decided I was getting a little bored of grilling the same old things for dinner.  I mean how many ways can you grill chicken and burgers before they all taste the same.  I stumbled across a recipe for Kofta (traditionally using ground lamb) and decided to switch it up a bit with turkey because a) it's cheaper and b) it was already in my freezer.  I can make my kids eat anything resembling a burger or a meatball if I throw a little red sauce on top, so I knew this would be golden.

This is not the quickest recipe in the world, but if you have a little bit of TIME this summer it's a good one to experiment with new flavors!

Grilled Turkey Kofta Kebobs and Tzatziki Pitas

For the Kofta:

1 pound Ground Turkey
Fresh Parsley (or dried will do)
garlic - 3 cloves
Coriander, Cumin, Cinnamon, Cayenne, Allspice, Ginger, Salt and Pepper

Ok so I tried to be fancy with the garlic using a trick my real chef friend Melissa told me about.  To make the garlic into a paste, just smash the garlic cloves and take the skin off, then sprinkle with salt and let them sweat for a few minutes.  Do that first... then chop other stuff

Ground turkey in a bowl, then grate half an onion over top.  Onion flakes will suffice as well, but I like grated onion

Chopped parsley, I grabbed a handful, but for my measuring friends (hi andrea) recipe says 3 tablespoons

Okay this part gets redundant with the pics so here you go... you need
1 TABLESPOON Coriander
1/2 TABLESPOON Cinnamon
1/2 TEASPOON Allspice
1/4 TEASPOON Cayenne and Ginger
Salt and Pepper

So the garlic was supposed to get pastey when I used the backside of my knife to scrape at it but alas, I am not a real chef like Melissa.  So I just chopped it and threw it in.

Mix it all together... with your hands!  Spoons are for wimps, and you really have to work the spices in anyway.

Spray a piece of aluminum foil lightly with oil

Form the meat into patties and place on skewers.

Refrigerate.  Please note my stocked refrigerator full of summer necessities (beer, milk, cranberry juice)

That should refrigerate for at least 30 minutes so it isn't goo when you try to grill it. Quick tzatziki recipe changes everytime I make it so don't stress following exact measurements.  This one was

2 cups plain yogurt
1/2 tablespoon Dill (dried)
half a lemon squeezed
1 tsp garlic powder
1 cucumber (thanks Tawnya for the cuc!) peeled and diced small
cherry tomatoes quartered
salt and pep to taste

So a few things happened between prep and cooking.  One being - I went outside to "play" with my neighbors ... aka Happy Hour.  The dog I'm watching ate all the pita bread while I was gone.  Thankfully he also cleaned up after the kids and ate all their mess off the ground after dinner so I still love him a lot.

Also thankfully I am a carb addict so I had Naan in the freezer to substitute.

Also my grill maste didn't make it home from work and that is a skill I refuse to learn, so I just baked these puppies at 350 for 25 minutes, then flipped the skewers and broiled for like 2 minutes.

I ate mine like that, but I put a little pasta sauce on the kofta with some leftover pasta for pickier eaters and it was a hit. 

Did you even know you could eat Tzatziki with your hands?  Girl after my own heart...


  •  3 cloves garlic
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  •  half a grated onion
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  •  skewers

  • Chop garlic well or form into a paste.  Mix the garlic into the turkey along with the onion, parsley, coriander, cumin, cinnamon, allspice, cayenne pepper, ginger, and salt and pepper in a mixing bowl USING YOUR HANDS :)

    Spray a sheet of aluminum foil with cooking spray. Form the mixture into 2 inch balls. Form each ball around the tip of a skewer, flattening into a 2 inch oval; repeat. Place the kebabs onto a baking sheet, cover, and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.

    GRILL - about 6 minutes per side (spray the grill with oil first to avoid sticking.  I might even grill the first side ON the aluminum foil because I'd be scared they would fall off.  But I'm not grill master)

    or BAKE at 350 for 25 minutes, then flip and Broil 2 minutes.

    Serve over flatbread or pitas with tzatziki sauce and fresh spinach. 

    Monday, March 19, 2012

    Honey Bourbon Pulled Chicken

    This post is long but bear with me… there is a recipe at the end.

    Hungry Mom didn’t do much Running in February.  You know the mom’s an (injured) runner when her 1 year old thinks that the foam roller is a fun toy.  An injury kept me sidelined through most of the month, but maybe for the best...

    It freed up some time to be extra crafty for my sister-in-law’s shower.  If you know me, you probably know that I married my best friend’s brother. It’s pretty cool when your best friend becomes your sister too.  Kate, Kerry (her sisters), my MIL and I had a blast pretending we were professional party planners and pouring all our energy into a shower for someone we all love so much!

    The Beautiful Bride to Be!

    The only catch was that Kelly lives in Colorado and we had never been to her house.  We had to plan everything “blindly” from home and then make it all small enough to pack in our suitcases and bring with us.  We would arrive late on Friday night and have just a few hours the next day to have everything ready to go. Kate and I really got Pinteresty and handmade just about everything on the table.  It was so fun!

    Kate made the banner with scrapbook paper and leftover fabric she had laying around the house.  We made the Yarn vases by gluing yarn around old wine, liquor and beer bottles.  Her graphic designer at work scanned the invitation for us and made a bunch of labels for the table.  I made that chalkboard frame from some free wood at Home Depot and an old frame.

    This ended up being really fun… I bought a can of chalkboard paint at Home Depot for about 9 bucks.  One can will last you forever.  Kate painted chalk squares on a pack of plastic glasses and left chalk out for the guests to write their names or descriptions like “Maid of Honor” or “Mother of the Groom."  It was such a fun (and cheap) way to get to know the members of the wedding without using boring old name tags.  

    Favors were “Cozy Campside Cocoa” in Mason Jars

    I took care of the menu planning from home so that we could get it all done quickly when we got to Colorado.  The theme was “Cowboy Chic” to to speak, and everything turned out adorable.
    On the Ranch Veggies

    Tumbleweed Salad with Lemon-Bacon Vinaigrette, Cowboy Caviar, Mac n Cheese Bites, Honey Bourbon Chicken Crostini

    Farm Fresh Fruit Skewers

    Dessert Table, complete with a picture of the Bride and her sister as a kid wearing her grandma’s dress.  She is wearing the same dress on her wedding day!

    After the shower, a bunch of the men were coming back to the house for dinner.  I had to plan the menu so that we could serve finger food for the ladies, but be able to transform it into a big hearty dinner for the men after the shower with as little work as possible.  We made two big Crock Pots of Honey Bourbon Pulled Chicken which we served in “Crostini” form at the party, and then with rolls as sandwiches afterward.  We pulled out some baked beans, mac n cheese, and cole slaw prepared earlier in the day and the transition to dinner was ready in about 5 minutes!  The Pulled Chicken turned out AWESOME and was a fun way to mix up your traditional BBQ sandwich.

    Honey Bourbon Pulled Chicken
    Makes… a lot!  Enough to feed 10 adults
    Originally posted and adapted form here

    2 1/2 cups ketchup
    1/2 small Onion, minced
    3/4 cup Bourbon
    4 Tablespoons Honey
    4 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
    4 tablespoon Molasses (or 2 tablespoons Brown Sugar)
    1 tablespoon Tomato Paste
    1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
    4 Garlic Cloves, smashed
    1 teaspoon Ground Ginger
    1 pinch Cayenne Pepper
    1 pinch Salt
    2 pounds chicken breast, 2 pounds chicken thigh
    Dill Pickle Slices

    First just add all the ingredients, aside from chicken in a bowl.  This is going to be a boring series of pictures but I’m doing it anyway…


    Brown Sugar!  NOTE that we used Molasses in Colorado and I prefer that, but I couldn’t find Molasses at Harris Teeter or Bloom so I went brown sugar.

    Tomato Paste


    That’s Bourbon… I used 1 cup and its very Bourbony.  So if you like Bourbon go for it.  If you’re not interested in sprouting hairs on your chest during dinner, go 3/4 cup.

    Cayenne?  Maybe?  Bad picture taking skills.


    Onion and garlic

    Mix mix

    I did 2 breasts and 1 pack of thighs for this at home because it is all I had and I figured that would be a good amount to feed the 5 of us.  I like mixing the cuts of meat because while I like chicken breast better, that little extra fat from the thigh helps keep all the chicken moist in the crockpot.

    Add it in and set to low for 5-7 hours.

    Shred with a fork or Salad Choppers, and serve on Rolls with Pickle Slices.


    Here’s the abbreviated, copy and paste-able version of the recipe:

    Honey Bourbon Pulled Chicken

    2 1/2 cups ketchup
    1/2 small Onion, minced
    1 cup Bourbon
    4 Tablespoons Honey
    4 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
    4 tablespoon Molasses
    1 tablespoon Tomato Paste
    1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
    4 Garlic Cloves, smashed
    1 teaspoon Ground Ginger
    1 pinch Cayenne Pepper
    1 pinch Salt
    2 pounds chicken breast, 2 pounds chicken thigh
    Dill Pickle Slices

    Mix all ingredients in a small bowl and whisk well.  Add chicken to crockpot and coat with sauce.  Set to low for 5 to 7 hours.  Before serving, remove chicken from crockpot onto a cutting board.  Shred well and return to sauce.  Serve with buns and pickle slices.

    Thursday, March 8, 2012

    HungrySister Presents: Roasted Vegetable Pot Pie

    Do you ever find yourself in a rut? Although I hate to admit it, I am definitely a creature of habit. I look at my closet every weekday morning and without fail choose one of the same 5 rotating outfits for work. I begrudgingly wake up at 5:33 (not 5:30, not 5:35) to go to the same exact classes at the gym every week. I have my favorite parking spot in my apartment building garage. I've had my hair parted on the same side since 2001. 

    I get like this with my meals too - while I love to cook, I also love going to the grocery store without a list and knowing exactly what I'll need to get me through the week. Every Sunday I roast up a bunch of root vegetables like a robot and usually end up turning them into a curry within a few days. 

    The other week I decided to put down the curry powder and do something different with these roasted veggies. My friend Kathryn and I got together made this really delicious, really simple roasted vegetable pot pie. It was so tasty and satisfying, and the best part is you can really throw whatever veggies you want/have in there!

    You'll need:
     4 to 5 cups roasted veggies of your choice. We used broccoli, red pepper, onion, mushrooms, carrots, celery, cauliflower, parsnips, and sweet potatoes (we went a little overboard!)
    2 refrigerated pie crusts (we used Pillsbury)
    1/3 cup butter
    1/3 cup flour
    1/2 tsp salt and pepper
    1 1/2 cup chicken or veggie broth
    2/3 cup milk
    1/3 cup grated cheese - we used asiago but parmesan or mozzarella would also be delicious!

    Preheat your oven to 425. 

    To roast the veggies: Chop up all of your veggies and toss with some olive oil, salt, pepper, and other spices if you're so inclined. I used some curry powder to make it more interesting (I tried putting down the curry powder, I really did!!) Roast vegetables for 30 to 40 minutes, turning with a spatula as needed.

    Prep pie crust as directed in 2 9 inch pans. We used a cool Pampered Chef baker because Kathryn is blessed with fine stoneware. In medium saucepan, melt the butter. Stir in the flour, salt, and pepper.

     Gradually stir in the broth and milk until bubbly and thickened. Add cheese and stir to incorporate.

    Remove from heat and add veggies. We added some more salt and some Turkish oregano mostly so we could take a picture of this cool container.

    Spoon into the crust-lined pan like so…

    ...and top with the other crust and flute the edges. If you're feeling really inspired you can cut a design in the middle.

    Cook for 30-40 minutes (until the crust is golden brown).

    Let stand five minutes before serving, if you can wait that long!