Asian Flavored Burgers – Simple and Delicious!

I am tired of hamburgers with salt and pepper as seasoning.  I have been making different combos for hamburgers.  I needed a quick meal tonight as I had some baking I needed to get done!  Here is what I threw together.  By the way, I love sriracha sauce!

Asian Flavored Burgers

April 9 2014 001


1 # ground beef (next time I am going to try ground pork)
1 scallion, chopped fine
1 small garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon ginger (I did not have fresh so I used powder.  Fresh is better!)
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon hoisin sauce
1/2 teaspoon red curry paste
2 Tablespoons Sriracha sauce
1 /3 cup crushed blue corn chips (or whatever tortilla chips you may have on hand)
1 medium chipotle pepper, chopped (remove seeds for less heat)

Mix all together.  You could barbecue (I would if we had one.  Need to buy another and NOW!) or put 1 Tablespoon peanut oil (or whatever you have) in a skillet.  Fry on each side for 4 minutes.  Serve with or without a bun.  No bun for me. April 9 2014 002I used a combo of mayo and sriracha sauce as a topping.

1/3 cup mayonnaise
2 Tablespoons sriracha sauce

Mix together and serve on any sandwich you would like!

Kent and I enjoyed these flavorful burgers.  I think you will too!!

Lemon Cookies

This is my Italian lemon cookie recipe with some tweaks.  I am finding I like to change things up to see if I can improve what I have done for so long.  I think that my old recipe is delicious and so is this one.  I am a huge fan of lemon though.  Here is my updated recipe.  Oh, and the frosting is super creamy.  LOVE IT!!

Lemon Cookies 2014

April 9 pm 2014 005


1/4 cup shortening (4 Tablespoons)
1/4 cup butter (4 Tablespoons)
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
3 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon lemon juice (you could still use 1 teaspoon lemon extract)
1/4 cup half and half
1/4 cup sour cream
1/2 teaspoon baking soda


  1. Preheat over to 350 degrees.
  2. Cream together shortening and sugar, cream in eggs.  Dissolve baking soda in with the sour cream/half and half.   Mix all ingredients together.  You can chill this dough.  I do not chill the dough.
  3. I use a teaspoon and roll the cookie dough into a 1″ diameter ball.  I place on parchment lined cookie sheet.  You could just place on a non stick cookie sheet, no need to grease the sheet.
  4. I place the racks in middle of oven.  Bake for 9-11 minutes, until bottom is a light golden brown.
  5. When cooled frost with lemon frosting or glaze.  I used frosting for these cookies.  Fun any time of year!

Lemon Buttercream Frosting

3 Tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon fresh lemon rind, grated
3 cups confectioners sugar
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3 Tablespoons cream (add 1 Tablespoon at a time.  You may not need 3)

Cream together the butter and lemon rind.  Mix rest of ingredients with electric mixer.  (I did not use my stand up mixer today.  I will next time though).  This is fast and incredibly creamy and delicious!!April 9 pm 2014 006 Isn’t yellow pretty?!  Enjoy!!


Roasted Asparagus

Spring is here and so is asparagus.  I enjoy asparagus raw, grilled and roasted.   Here is how easy it is to roast asparagus.  I also roast brussels sprout.

Roasted Asparagus

April 8 2014 006

2 Tablespoons olive oil (or any oil you want to use)
Salt (I use Kosher)
Pepper (I use fresh ground)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with foil. I spray with Pam or you could lightly brush oil on the foil.  Place asparagus on baking sheet and brush 1 Tablespoons of olive oil over the stalks. April 8 2014 004 Season with kosher salt.  Bake 10-15 minutes, until lightly browned.

That’s it.  Now this is Simple and Delicious!!

Skillet Lasagna (under 60 minutes)

I really try hard to make a weeknight meal.  By the time I get home it is close to 6.  If I can whip something up in under an hour that makes me happy.  If it is delicious that is even better.  I found this recipe, where else….America’s Test Kitchen.   I find using ground sausage vs ground beef makes the sauce way more flavorful.  I think you will agree!!

Skillet Lasagna

April 8 2014 008


1 28 ounce can diced tomatoes
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, chopped
Table salt
3 medium cloves garlic
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 pound Italian sausage (removed from casing)
10 curly edged lasagna noodles, broken into 2 inch lengths (I would use 8 next time)
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce (I used 15 ounce)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (I grated and used 1 cup)
Ground black pepper
1 cup ricotta cheese (I seasoned with salt and pepper)
3 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil (you could use dried if you don’t have fresh.  Just use 1/2 half or 1 1/2 Tablespoons)


1.  Pour tomatoes with their juices into a 1 quart measuring cup – that would be 4 cups 🙂  Add water until mixture measures 4 cups.  (I will do 4 1/2 cups next time)
2.  Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat until shimmering.  Add onion, bell pepper and 1/2 teaspoon salt.  Cook until onion begins to brown, about 5 minutes.  Stir in garlic and pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  Add sausage and cook, breaking apart the meat, until no longer pink, about 5-8 minutes.
3.  Scatter broken lasagna noodles over sausage but do not stir.  Pour diced tomatoes with juices and tomato sauce over pasta.  Cover and bring to simmer.  Reduce heat to medium low and simmer, stirring occasionally until past is tender, about 20 minutes.
4.  Remove skillet from heat and stir in 1/2 cup (I used 1 cup) Parmesan.  Season with salt and pepper.  Dot with heaping tablespoons ricotta (I did season the ricotta with salt and pepper), cover and let stand off heat for 5 minutes.  Sprinkle with basil and Parmesan cheese.  April 8 2014 013

Enjoy this Simple and Delicious dish!!

Food Quote – Craig Claiborne

Cooking is at once child’s play and adult joy.  And cooking done with care is an act of love. – Craig Claiborne

My child’s play and adult joy – chopping vegetables, LOTS of them!  or…maybe baking something with chocolate  😉


Craig Claiborne was an American restaurant critic, food journalist and book author. A long-time food editor and restaurant critic for The New York Times, he was also the author of numerous cookbooks and an autobiography. (Wikipedia)

Carrot Cake Sandwich Cookies

I saw this recipe and couldn’t wait to make it. I thought it was amusing that it was on Cooking Light’s website.  There is really nothing “light” about this recipe.  I don’t believe in no fat or low fat products so I used full fat cream cheese.  I suppose 2 cups of carrots could be considered light!  This was a quick recipe.  I ended up doing 2 batches.  I only got 18 cookies which turned into 9 since they are sandwich cookies.  I brought these to work and they loved them.  My family enjoyed them also.  Give this simple and delicious cookie a shot!!

Carrot Cake Sandwich Cookies

April 2014 012



2 cups shredded carrots (4-5 carrots)
2/3 cup brown sugar, divided
2 Tablespoons butter
2 Tablespoons canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 cup unbleached all purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda


8 ounces cream cheese, softened
4 Tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


April 2014 011

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Place parchment paper on baking sheets.
2.  Combine carrot and 3 Tablespoons brown sugar in a bowl, toss to coat.  Place carrot mixture in a fine mesh sieve, let stand to drain 10 minutes. Discard liquid. (This will help to tenderize the carrots. This is an important step.  Unlike a cake which you bake much longer.  The cookies bake for 11 minutes.  You want to do this step to soften the carrots.)
3.  Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in small bowl.  Add oil, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract and egg; stir with a whisk until well combined.
4.  Place flour, remaining brown sugar, cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and baking soda in large bowl; stir with whisk.  Add carrot mixture and butter mixture; stir until combined.
5.  Drop dough by 1 Tablespoonful, 2 inches apart on parchment lined baking sheet.
6.  Bake at 350 for 11 minutes or until set. (I baked for 10 minutes, turning baking sheets halfway through cook time)
7.  Remove pans from oven; let stand 3 minutes.  Remove cookies from pan onto wire rack.
8.  For FROSTING:  combine cream cheese, butter and vanilla extract on medium speed until fluffy.  Add powdered sugar, beat at low speed until well combined.  Spread about 1 Tablespoonful of icing on flat side of cookie, top with another cookie, flat side down.  (You can 1/2 this recipe.  I made the above amount because I made 2 batches of the cookies.)

These tasted like a mini carrot cake.  They were really easy and took no time at all.  Enjoy!

Brussels Sprouts Salad

With Spring in the air, at least it should be, salads are on my mind.  I want to start making different salads.  I found this recipe and thought it looked interesting so I wanted to give it a try.  It was very simple and just as delicious. Let me know what you think!

Brussels Sprouts Salad

April 5 2014 008

1 pound brussels sprouts, cut off the ends, give them a good cleaning and slice thin
2-3 carrots, shredded
1/2 cup dried cranberries (you could use any dried fruit you enjoy, raisins, craisins…you get what I mean)
1/2 cup slivered almonds
1 small apple, diced (a pear would be delicious too)

3 lemons
2 Tablespoons oil (I used Avocado oil, you can use whatever you want)
2 Tablespoons honey
Salt to taste


April 5 2014 006

1.  Combine all the salad ingredients in a bowl.
2.  In a small bowl whisk all the dressing ingredients together.
3.  Pour dressing over the salad and toss well.
4.  Put the salad in the fridge for 30 minutes or so. That will give the flavors time to marinate.

Kent had the salad right away.  He thought it was great.  I waited 30 minutes and I liked it better after sitting in the fridge.  Very refreshing salad.  Looking forward to making many more new salads this year.Enjoy!!