Rhythm ‘n’ Thyme Turkey Burgers

Deck the halls with boughs of holly
Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la
‘Tis the season to be jolly
Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la Don we now our gay apparel Fa-la-la, la-la-la, la-la-la.
Troll the ancient Yule-tide carol
Fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la.

Oh…there you are! You caught me having a dance around Love Food HQ’s kitchen, doing three of my most favourite things: singing, dancing and cooking!!! Makes for a very happy me, I can tell you. 

As you’re here, I’ll share with you my super quick, delightfully tasty and surprisingly inexpensive meal which we all like in the Crimbo Limbo time between Christmas and New Year. 

The festive season is well and truly here, and as we await the close of this year’s celebrations and welcoming of the new, I’m thinking a wee tasty meal that’s both kind to wallets and waistlines while still being delicious and nutritious. Yes, this can be a challenge at this time of year. Fear not! Our seasonal zeal for all things poultry, in particular, turkey sees no abatement and with this key seasonal ingredient in mind, here’s a quick and simple recipe to take you from conservational evening meal to quick lunch before New Year’s sales shopping – and everything in-between.

Turkey is a low-fat meat and a source of protein. Here I’ve created a healthy homemade burger that’s just right for quick evening meals on the run-up to the Big Night (aka New Year’s Eve). Add various low-fat and nutritious side dishes, lashings of festive-inspired drinks plus a good dollop or two of great company and you have the recipe – excuse the pun – for a perfect occasion.IMG_5569

Ingredients

Makes 8

450g minced turkey

100g wholemeal breadcrumbs (or gluten-free if you prefer)

1 onion, skin removed, finely sliced and chopped

A handful of fresh thyme, washed and finely chopped (or 1-2tsps of dried thyme)

Salt and pepper to season

A little flour (any kind)

A little oil (any kind, if shallow frying)

Method

  • Put the turkey, breadcrumbs, onion and thyme in a bowl and either by using a wooden spoon or your freshly washed hands, mix all the ingredients together. The mixture will resemble this:IMG_5520
  • Add a little salt and pepper while continuing to mix all the ingredients together.
  • When the ingredients have combined to form a large ball, divide into 8 equal portions. Form each portion into a round ball shape and set aside.
  • On a floured work surface, place a ball and gently press it down to form a flat circle. Ensure the burger is covered with flour and set it aside, ready to cook. Do this to the remaining 7 balls.
  • Next, either fire up the barbeque and gently cook the burgers on both sides until their meat is cooked thoroughly or place a frying pan on a low heat, pouring a little oil into it. Heat the oil and when the oil is ‘spitting’, it is warm enough to start putting the burgers in.
  • Cook the burgers on a gentle, low heat and periodically turn them over to ensure they cook through. Cooking them will take about 20-25 minutes and the meat will firm in texture with a caramelised look appearing on both sides of the burgers.
  • Once cooked, serve with salad, pickles, hummus and dressings. The dressing used here is a dijon mustard low-fat dressing with the recipe here: “How To Make Mustard Dressing”.

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Voila!

These look and taste delicious, costing pennies to make! The minced turkey was £2.49 for 450g, the thyme was out of the Love Food HQ garden so free bar lovingly tendered by my own fair hand – it’s about 69p-99p to buy fresh depending upon where you shop and you’d have some left over to use in other dishes. An onion has cost about 10p. Breadcrumbs…a couple of slices of wholemeal bread…a small loaf at 75p…so about 12p. And a splash of oil and seasoning. Under £3.00 for 8 tasty and nutritious burgers. Proving excellent value for money and you know exactly what ingredients have gone into making these tasty beauties. 

The origin of food is so important especially as we live in a time of unprecedented GM foods to be found on many supermarkets’ shelves.

I’ll be bringing you more cost-effective meals through my food ‘inventions’ very soon, fellow foodies. 

Until then: Do feel free to join me and sing along here.

Dawn x

For more simple-to-make and easy-to-follow recipes, simply follow this website to receive updates as and when they happen – straight into your ‘inbox’ – www.forfoodlovers,wordpress.com and the Twitter feed @Love_Food_UK.

 

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Bonfire-Ready Pea and Bacon Risotto

Nourishing November Grub

The First Day of November and here at Love Food HQ I’m inspired to celebrate this month of bonfires, sparklers, fireworks and guys with some cheap, cheerful and deliciously easy-to-make food – all wrapped together under the delightfully apt banner of #NourishingNovemberGrub.

Without further a-do, here’s this evening’s dinner recipe of pea and bacon risotto which has gone down a treat – or up like a gigantic firework with it’s tasty, filling and nutritious simplicity, depending upon how acknowledging you are of this month’s pending celebrations.

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Ready to eat well – for mere pennies, fellow foodies? Then here you go!

Ingredients

Serves 2

1 white onion or 2 shallots, peeled and chopped finely

1 clove of garlic, peeled and crushed

1tsbp of oil (I’ve used coconut oil: sunflower or olive oil are useful alternatives)

2 rashers of unsmoked bacon, rinds removed and cut into small pieces

100g rice, thoroughly washed and rinsed, your preference as to type (I’ve used a basics white rice range)

50g frozen peas

1litre vegetable stock (I used a good quality gluten-free stock cube with boiling hot water)

2tbsp low fat natural yoghurt

Salt and pepper to season

Method

  • On a medium heat, place a frying pan and add the oil you are cooking with. Wait until a mini heat haze appears and add the onion and garlic, turning the heat to low and cooking the ingredients for about 10 minutes or until the onion appears translucent.
  • Now add the chopped bacon and swish within the onion and garlic mixture until all the mini-looking rashers are coated in both the oil and the onion and garlic. The bacon will turn from a raw red-looking colour to a medium pink colour once cooked.
  • Next, add the washed rice and stir into the ingredients, ensuring it is coated with the mixture.
  • Gradually add the vegetable stock a little at a time and allowing each lot of stock to slowly cook out, then adding another similar sized portion of stock and again cooking it out. Repeat this process until all the stock is used.
  • The rice I’ve used will take about 10-15 minutes to cook and retains it’s shape and texture well, whilst being a cheap alternative to the more expensive risotto rices.
  • You are looking for a thick-ish soup consistency and once achieved, down off the heat and remove the frying pan to a cold burner. You can now slowly add and stir in the low fat natural yoghurt being mindful not to let it curdle – this is optional so if you don’t have any to hand, then this meal will still tasty delicious without it. The natural yoghurt simply adds a creaminess to the dish.
  • Season and serve on warmed places or in dishes.

And that, fellow foodies, is it: a very quick, ever-so cheap and easy-to-make dinner after the day.

Bon appétit,

Dawn

For more easy-to-make recipes and inspired food ideas, then follow this website here and keep up-to-date with Ms Love Food on Twitter. Facebook and Mumsnet are websites you’ll find me on, too – so keep looking for tasty recipes coming up, fellow foodies!