growing up good

mothering, homeschooling, and me


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Leftover Turkey, cranked up a notch, 2 ways!

Last weekend I roasted a turkey breast. I follow Ina Garten’s recipe here. The only substitutions I make are dried herbs, at roughly 1/3 the quantity, for the fresh herbs (because I never seem to have all the fresh herbs on hand, especially in the winter). It’s delicious, and becoming my staple roasting recipe.

Usually when I’ve got turkey leftovers, I make a delicious and comforting cheesy turkey concoction that goes great on a crusty roll.  However, I’m trying to lighten it up a bit this month, and came up with 2 great ways to use my leftover turkey in a healthier way.

Yes, you could just make a turkey sandwich, use light may and once slice of bread. That thought did cross my mind. But I’m in the mindset right now to cram as many veggies in per meal as I can, so here’s what I did. You can include everything but the cucumbers and avocado and have the core components of 2 meals at once. I’ll include the details of the 2 below.

All ingredients are estimates, increase/decrease as your taste desires (and if you don’t have that much turkey, that’s ok, just up the veggies):

3-4 cups cooked, de-boned, and chopped turkey

1/4 chopped onion (green, red, yellow, whatever)

1-2 cloves garlic, chopped

3/4 cup diced cucumber

1/2 red pepper, diced

2 Tbs cilantro, chopped

1 avocado, sliced and chunked

Seasoning: I used 2 tsp of Wildtree’s Adobe Lime Rub (which was AMAZING), but you could use a fajita or taco seasoning, or just salt and pepper, whatever your taste is, really! I’d recommend a squeeze of citrus, it adds a great flavor!

Gently mix together, it will look like this:

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Option 1: Flavorful Southwest Turkey Avocado Salad

Serve as-is on a bed of lettuce. Dress with a mexi-ranch dressing (light, if you wish), a lite-sour cream/salsa combo, or light ranch (which was my choice).  Top with a sprinkle of cheese if you like (I love cheese), tomatoes too.

Option 2: SW Avocado-Turkey Wrap

This was the recipe that inspired the salad. I mixed in 2 Tbs of lite mayo to the above mixture, spooned a couple scoops onto a wheat tortilla (I found ones that are lower in fat, calories and carbs than the ones we usually get, but not as expensive as the low-carb option!), topped with some shredded lettuce, tomatoes and cheese, and wrapped it up. For this part I didn’t add the avocado to the mixture, but sliced the halved avocado and put  the slices on top before I wrapped it up. It was delish!

Other ingredients that would taste great with this mixture:

black beans

corn

tortilla strips (the chip kind)

those taco-salad chip bowls


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A boy and some beer bread (from scratch)

I’ll admit it: I’m a big fan of dip. It really doesn’t matter what kind- hot, cold, creamy, herby, with or without bacon.

I’m also a big fan of chips and whatever other vehicles you need to get the dip in your mouth, usually carb-laden. Enter: beer bread.  I first experienced the joy that is beer bread at a Tastefully Simple “party” years ago. I’ve since been addicted, and I don’t mind pairing it w/ some garlic dip as well. My husband pretty much agrees with me: beer bread is awesome. The nice crusty exterior, the chewy softness of the interior. Delish. When cubed, it makes a great dip transport.

Here’s a recipe my husband brought me from a co-worker awhile back (like before we moved to IL) and demanded that I make it.  Ok, demand is a bit of a stretch, but he also knew the mixes I was buying for beer bread were costing us a pretty penny, and hoped this would make a nice substitution. Unless you’re doing a side-by-side comparison (which we did), you can’t tell the difference between this version and the mixes you can buy.  AND, it’s easy.

Here’s the recipe:

3 cups self-rising flour

3 tablespoons sugar

1 can beer

Don’t have self-rising flour? That’s okay! It’s easy to make your own, sub this for each cup of flour: 1 cup flour, 1.5 tsp baking powder, .5 tsp salt

I didn’t have self-rising flour, so I measured all my dry ingredients into a separate bowl first. And I had a helper, too. Edison needed some Mama attention, so I invited him into the kitchen to help me. It’s not very often he gets me all to himself (wait…before each nap, in the middle of the night, bedtime…..). Ok, it’s not very often he gets me all to himself when he’s not supposed to be asleep. He thought he was pretty cool on the Learning Tower. I gave him a little flour to play with.

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I let him help me measure a few of the ingredients. He clapped each time he emptied a tablespoon into the bowl! When we got everything measured, I let him help me stir the big bowl and managed to get a pic of us doing that. He’s too young and too crazy to let handle the spoon on his own, especially since this day I actually needed to produce edible results (we were taking it to a NYE party).

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I should probably add that in these pictures, I’m making a double batch, that’s why I used such a big bowl and have a ton of flour in there!

Once my dry ingredients were mixed nicely, I got my beer. I chose a Bud light and a Fat Tire (double batch).  We have a strange amount of beer in our fridge, considering we’re not really big drinkers. I have no idea when this Bud Light appeared in there, nor where it came from, but I figured it was as good a time as any to use it up.

Pour your beer-the whole thing-  into your mixing bowl, and then slowly add your dry ingredients. I really, really, really wish I had a picture of my 15 month old child pouring a beer into the bowl, but I wasn’t that coordinated!

Mix slowly.

Edison was thrilled to be so close to the mixer. This is the closest I’ve ever let him get (he is only 15 months, you know!).  I haven’t forgotten how much supervision he still needs (ok, he won’t let me forget- he is into everything, all the time, all day long). I had to stand right there when the mixer was going and had to grab his fingers one to keep him from sticking them in. He’ll learn, but in the meantime, I have to be RIGHT there.

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Mix well, but don’t over-mix it.

Your dough/batter will be sticky, but thick.

Next- prepare your pan. Lightly grease the sides and bottom of a loaf pan. I prepped two.

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If you’re doubling it, divide the batter between the two pans. Otherwise, just put it all in one pan.

Here’s the coronary part: you can melt 1/4 cup of butter and pour it on top. This gives it a nice, buttery, crunchy top and sides. I say can because you don’t have to make it awesome, it’s just up to you.

Bake at 325 for 50-60 minutes.

When they’re done, they’ll be nice and golden on the edges.

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Remove from pan (using oven mits, don’t burn yourself!) and let cool on cooling rack. Let cool completely before you put it in a bag. You can slice it just like regular bread- in fact this would probably make excellent grilled cheese. I sliced and cubed to take along to party.

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