Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Pin Tested: Baked "Fried" Pickles

Recipe Link


Recipe Link 
  • 1/3  jar pickle slices (10ish slices)
  • 1 egg
  • Splash of milk
  • Dash of hot sauce
  • Shake of garlic powder
  • Shake of pepper
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • Shake of bread crumbs
  • Ranch dressing + hot sauce for dipping

1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees
2. Mix egg, milk, and hot sauce in bowl
3. Mix all bread crumbs and seasoning in another bowl
4. Dry pickle slices with paper towel
5. Dip pickle slices in egg mixture then breading mixture
6. Place breaded pickles on cookie sheet and bake for 7-10 min
7. Dip and Enjoy! 

Yum! I ate mine right away! It may have been because I was super hungry about not eating much for lunch, but I think it was more related to the taste. 

FYI these do not taste like the fried pickles you would get at a restaurant. They are much lighter and not greasy which I think makes them better, but they may be in need of a bit more seasoning because of the lack of grease. The panko bread crumbs give the pickles the perfect amount of crunch! 

Rachel Approved? Any improvements?: 
Yes! I will make them again for sure (for a larger group now that I know they are yummy), but I might add a bit more hot sauce or maybe a dash of ranch seasoning to give them a bit more flavor. 

(I guess I really wanted to make these because I pinned two similar recipes)

I decided to combine to recipes to make my test (aka single-serving) version. 

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Turkey Meatloaf Burger: Day Two

Turkey Meatloaf Burger Follow-Up: Good News. This burger is still amazing when re-heated. 

I'm also testing to see how a few do after being frozen (I couldn't eat them all myself in such a short period of time). 

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Microwave Cleaner/Deodorizer: Take Two!

Since, the vinegar method didn't do the trick, I thought I'd try something else...

Original Pin:

From Maid Natural Cleaning
  1. put citrus peels (or slices of lemon) into a large mug or bowl
  2. cover the slices completely with water (lemons float so this is tricky)
  3. place mug inside of microwave and nuke for 3-5 mins
  4. let the mug cool down for 2 mins and remove from microwave
  5. simply wipe down interior of microwave with paper towel or cloth
I feel pretty exposed while showing you the inside of my microwave

Rachel Approved?: This method didn't have the vinegar scent side-effect of the first method I tried. However, there is still a bacon scent (now with a hint of lemon) to my microwave. On my best deodorizer scale, lemons took my 8 to a 6-5. 

What next?: Besides cooking bacon in the oven or frying pan, I'll be trying another microwave cleaning method. Does anyone have any ideas? I'm thinking of a method that includes baking soda. 

Have you tried any natural cleaning methods? Did you have any luck?

Turkey Meatloaf Burger

Original Pin:

(Disclaimer: I saw this in Rachael Ray's Look and Cook before I saw it on Pinterest)


· 4 tablespoons butter
· 1 small mcintosh apple (I didn't see any mcintosh at my grocery store so I bought a lady allice instead), peeled and finely chopped
· 1 small onion (I prefer red so that is what I used), finely chopped
· 1 small rib celery, finely chopped
· Salt and pepper
· 1/3 cup plain breadcrumbs
· 1 pound ground dark-meat turkey
· 1 large egg
· 1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
· 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
· 2 teaspoons poultry seasoning (about 2/3 palmful)
· Extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO), for drizzling
· Sliced sharp white cheddar, for topping
· 1/3 cup whole-berry cranberry sauce
· 3 tablespoons sour cream
· 2 tablespoons chopped chives
· 4 large sandwich-size sourdough English muffins, split and toasted
· 4 thin slices red onion (I forgot this…)
· 4 leaves red-leaf or red romaine lettuce (I forgot this, but it would be delicious)

(from Rachael Ray's Website)

1. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add the butter to melt, then add the apple, onion and celery; season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. 

2. Stir in the breadcrumbs, then transfer to a bowl to cool; reserve the skillet. 
3. Mix in the turkey, egg, parsley, mustard and poultry seasoning; season with salt and pepper. 
4. Form into four (I made 6 smaller (but still good sized) patties instead, well I had seven but one fell apart) 4-inch patties.

5. Wipe out the reserved skillet and add a liberal drizzle of EVOO. Warm over medium-high heat, add the patties and cook, turning once, until cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes. Top with the cheddar during the last minute.

6. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix the cranberry sauce, sour cream and chives.

7. Serve the patties on the English muffins with the onion, lettuce and cranberry-sour cream sauce.

Rachel Approved?: YES! This was probably the most delicious burger I've ever eaten. It combines my two favorite foods: Burgers and Thanksgiving. (Yes, "Thanksgiving" is a food). 
I definitely overuse phrases like "the best day ever", but I think cooking this was "the proudest I've felt after cooking something ever."

You don't even notice the missing lettuce and red onion slice

Anything that could make it better?: Having my sweet potato fries done cooking at the same time as my burger...
Check out that ranch and BBQ sauce mixture!
But seriously, I should have used a little less apple - I had a little trouble keeping my burgers together. 

What is the best burger you've ever made? Was the recipe from Pinterest?

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Microwave Cleaner/De-Odorizer

Original Pin:

From Budget Savy Diva's Blog
Mix 1 cup hot water (I made my water hot with the tap) and 1 cup vinegar in microwave safe bowl. Microwave mixture for 10 min. 
You could be productive during this time and get some other cleaning done, but I chose not to. 

My favorite way to clean: wine, ice cream, and Duck Dynasty! 

Pin Approved?: No. I'd say my microwave (originally smelling of bacon) went from a 9 (on a 1-10 scale with 10 being the worst) to an 8. So not a big change. The scent is now a mix of bacon and vinegar and my kitchen and dining area smell of vinegar which is less than ideal. (I'm very glad that I'm having nice weather so my kitchen window can be wide open!) 

Any positives?: Yes, after the process it was easy to wipe down my microwave. Mine was pretty clean to start with, but I'm guessing that this method may help with food splashes that have dried.

What now?: Luckily, Pinterest has a multitude of ways to clean-deodorize microwaves so I'll be trying another method later this week. 

Have you tried to clean your microwave using a natural solution? What worked? What did not work?