Quick and Healthy – Greek Turkey Meatballs

My husband and I have been looking at new places to rent and I keep running into the same problem – Small Kitchens!  Some places have less counter space than we have now, which I thought was impossible! When will builders begin making what I want? A house that is half kitchen! I don’t need a bigger bedroom – all I do is sleep in there! Give me a big kitchen.

Sigh. In the meantime, I continue to bake away in the tiny kitchen we have now.

I have been making these meatballs a lot lately. Mainly because they are so versatile. You could easily double this recipe for a small family and use the leftovers to make, meatball sandwiches, toss with pasta, or eat with some roasted vegetables. They are packed with flavor too. Really, these should be called healthier-than-sausage meatballs because they taste a lot like pork sausage, but with much less fat. I like to eat them with tzatziki and pita.

And just wait to see how easy they are to make.

A Delectable Endeavors original

0-31 lb of ground turkey

1/2 cup of breadcrumbs (I like panko)

1 large egg

1/3 of an onion finely minced

red pepper flakes, salt and pepper to taste

1/2 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp fennel seeds

1/2 tsp garlic salt

1/2 tsp cracked oregano

1/4 cup of crumbled feta

Mix everything together with your hands. Form into 1 inch large balls.

You have 2 choices for baking. 1. Lightly spray a baking pan and bake them at 350 degrees for approximately 20 minutes. 2. Lightly spray a saute pan and cook them until nicely brown on all sides and cooked all the way through.

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Quick and Healthy Series – Chipotle Turkey Tacos with Avocado Creme

I’m starting a new series based on how I’ve been cooking lately.  Fast. Easy. Healthy.  Between finishing up a post-doc, doing side projects, studying for licensing exam, well . . .  you get the idea.  While I still love cooking, I don’t have nearly as much time to cook anymore, so I’ve needed to find some ways to fit cooking into my schedule.  Of course, my tastes haven’t changed just because my cooking habits have, so these dishes also be delicious and seem like I spent hours cooking when I really only spent 20-30 minutes.

This is a great kick off to the series because it is a wonderful combination of delicious and complex flavors.  You would think that this would take someone hours of simmering, but takes very little time and effort.  The creme can be made ahead of time as well, cutting down your prep time even more!

I would like to preface this recipe with a note.  These are not real tacos.  Real tacos are a magical thing everyone should experience.  My favorites were from a food cart outside my old work place in the city.  If you have never had tacos from a food cart, don’t be afraid, they could change your life.

1 lb of ground turkey

3 chipotle peppers, in sauce, chopped

1 small (15 oz) can of chopped tomatoes

All Recipe taco seasoning mix

corn tortillas

Avocado creme (taken from Two Peas & Their Pod)

1/2 cup plain fat-free Greek yogurt (I use Chobani)
2 ripe avocados, peeled and seeded
1 clove garlic, minced
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 small Serrano pepper, seeded and chopped
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
Salt and ground black pepper, to taste

Make Avocado creme by adding cilantro, Serrano pepper, and garlic to food processor.  Pulse a few times until combined and pepper is thoroughly chopped.  Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until smooth. Refrigerate.

To make tacos

Season raw turkey with All Recipe taco seasoning mix.  No need to let sit.  Add seasoned turkey to a pan heated over medium heat.  Once meat begins to brown, add chipotle peppers and canned tomatoes.  Let simmer until cooked through.  You can add a little slurry of cornstarch and water if you want to thicken the mixture up a bit.

Serve over warm tortillas and top with avocado creme!

Red Enchiladas

I had an Oops moment recently.  I went to the store to buy some enchilada sauce.  Mainly because I love mexican food, but I’m a little shy about making it.  So when I cook, I take some short cuts.  This includes buying enchilada sauce rather than trying to make my own.

Unfortunately, when I got home to make the enchiladas, I noticed that I had bought red chile sauce instead of enchilada sauce.  I admit, I have very little knowledge of how red chile sauce is different from enchilada sauce, but I looked at the ingredients and realized that red chile sauce is essentially a puree of chile peppers.  So, I decided to add a little of this, a dash of that, and see what I ended up with.  Luckily, the results were excellent!  I know this does not have any tomato in it, so it is not your traditional enchilada sauce.  However, it is mighty tasty.

Filling:

1 lb of ground meat for filling (I used turkey)

1 small onion, chopped

1 Tbl of oil

2 cloves of garlic, minced

2 tsp cumin

1 cup of shredded cheese (I used cheddar)

2/3 cup of red chile sauce

Topping:

1 (28 ounce) can of red chile sauce

1 1/2 Tbl cumin

1 tsp dried oregano

2 tsp garlic salt

1 cup of shredded cheese (I used cheddar)

corn tortillas

Get a 9×11 pan ready to place the assembled enchiladas.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Warm up the 28 ounce can of red chile sauce on low in a saucepan.

In a separate pan, heat oil in a pan on medium.  Add onion and garlic.  Heat through until fragrant, a few minutes.  Then add ground turkey, cumin, and add 2/3 cup of red chile sauce from saucepan.  Let this simmer until all ingredients are nearly cooked through.

While meat is simmering, season remaining red chile sauce.  Add cumin, oregano, garlic salt, salt and pepper to taste to the sauce.  Only warm through, then remove the sauce from heat.  Pour half of the sauce into a shallow dish to dip tortillas.

When meat is nearly ready, remove from heat.  To assemble enchiladas, take a tortilla.  Dip into seasoned sauce.   Then, place meat mixture in the center of the tortilla.  Sprinkle with cheese.  Roll and place, seam down, in the 9×11 pan.  Continue until meat mixture is finished and tortillas fill the pan.  Pour remaining red chile sauce over enchiladas.  Sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Place enchiladas in the oven for approximately 15 minutes or until cheese is bubbling.  Let cool slightly before serving.  Enjoy!