Tag Archives: Grill

Birthday Round 2 & Labor Day: Mint and Cumin Spiced Lamb Chops

29 Aug

Happy Friday team! More importantly, happy LONG WEEKEND! Maybe the federal holiday will give you some extra time to allot to cooking up something incredible?! May I suggest these bad boys? Featured on the cover of the special grilling issue of Bon Appétit magazine, it was basically love at first sight.  I decided immediately these Mint and Cumin Spiced Lamb Chops should be the main feature of the birthday dinner I had last weekend.  Granted, depending on where you shop (ahem, Whole Foods) and how many people are included in the experience, these are not technicallyyyy nommin’ on a budget worthy.  BUT, I needed to present them to the blog world regardless.

Click on the above link for all necessary ingredients and instructions.  These need to be prepared at least 2-3 hours ahead of scheduled meal time so they can marinate in all the spicy goodness.

Magazine and some sunflowers to maintain a summery spirit:

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Fresh mint:

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The plethora of spices! Make sure to follow the measurements veryyyy carefully.  Pulse until finely chopped and well-mixed.   Food processing the mint leaves will actually make a sort of wet substance… have no fear as this allows you to spread on the lamb very easily.

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Rub like so:

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Ready to go in the fridge!

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After at least two hours, pop on the grill.  KEEP the layer of fat on the chops as it permeates the meat while cooking for an awesome flavor.  You will have to grill these bad boys for a bit longer than the directions say.  We grilled for about 10-15 minutes total, flipping over a few times, and then cut the chops apart at the end and continued cooking for 5 minutes to make sure they weren’t too rare (the goal was medium-rare).

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And yes, the eight of us ate all five racks.  Enjoy!

Bacon-Wrapped Maple Wings with Grilled Pineapple

18 Jun

So hilariously enough, when my culinary interests peaked along with the sales of the famous Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy, my parents bought me a “50 Shades of Chicken” cookbook.  It’s narrated as a saucy parody, but is chalk full of recipes and techniques. One of my favorites is the maple-glazed wings with bacon (the narration entitled “Bacon Bound”), the obvious reason being the use of a key word in my vocabulary, bacon.

You’ll need:

-1/4 cup maple syrup

-1/4 cup soy sauce

-1/4 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts

-1 1/2 tablespoons rice wine or apple cider vinegar

-1 teaspoon black pepper

-15 chicken wings (about 3 lbs), patted very dry with paper towels

-8 strips bacon

Serves 4 to 6 people, or just me, myself and I.

In a large bowl, combine maple syrup, soy sauce, scallions, vinegar, garlic, and pepper and mix well.  Add the chicken wings and toss them gently so they are covered. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the chicken marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight.

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Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.  Slice the bacon in half lengthwise to yield long thin ribbons (“perfect for restraining your bird”).  Remove the wings from the marinade and wipe off any clinging garlic or scallion pieces.  Tightly tie up each chicken wing in a bacon ribbon and lay the chicken wings, tips up, on a large baking pan.  Cover loosely with foil and bake for 30 minutes.  Uncover the dish and continue to bake until golden and crisp, another 10-15 minutes.

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For a burst of contradicting flavor, pair with grilled pineapple! Buy a whole one, cut across for chunks that are an inch or two thick.  Cut around chunks to remove the outside.  Toss on the grill for a few minutes on each side.

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And if you’d like to surprise a fellow carnivore with a lovely present, shop for the cookbook!

Summertime Salmon Burgers

1 Jun
Well we’re officially post-Memorial Day! Coupled with 80 to 90 degree daily weather, I think it’s safe to assume we have approached the summer season! Despite the impending humidity and overheating in pencil skirts, I am definitely looking forward to spending time outside on my deck, grilling up delicious meals for friends and family.  My usual go-to meal is some sort of delectable burger, mixing and matching fresh ingredients to jazz up my red meat.  But as we know, too much of anything isn’t a good thing.  So in an attempt to take a healthier, less fatty route,  I whipped up this salmon burger recipe last week- gotta love my girl Martha Stewart’s culinary insights! It takes less than 30 minutes and serves four.  Pair it with these awesome grilled stuffed zucchini boats for a nutritious, flavor-packed meal!
You’ll need:
Salmon Burgers with Yogurt Dill Sauce
  • 1 pound skinless salmon fillet, finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon prepared white horseradish
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest, plus 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons plain dried breadcrumbs
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup plain low-fat yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
  • 4 whole-wheat hamburger buns, split and toasted (I used whole-wheat Naan bread)
  • Romaine lettuce, for serving
Stuffed Zucchini
  • 2 zucchini
  • 1 cup garbanzo beans
  • 2 small tomatoes
  • small handful chopped kalamata olives
  • small handful of chopped green onions
  • small handful of goat cheese
  • about 1/4c basil pesto
To make the burgers, start by dicing the salmon filet.  The best way to do this is to use a sharp knife and slice the salmon lengthwise in 1 inch strips, then cut crosswise to make 1 inch by 1 inch cubes.  It’ll be easy to make the patties without crushing the fish.
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In a medium bowl, combine the salmon, horseradish, lemon zest and juice, egg, scallions, breadcrumbs, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper; mix gently with a fork.
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Turn on the grill to high heat.  Grab handfuls of the salmon mixture and make four even patties.
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Almost ready for the grill!  But first, let’s make the zucchini boats.  Cut each zucchini in half the long way.  Take a spoon and scoop out the insides, leaving 1/4 inch perimeter around the skin so the boats keep their shape.  Then cut across in half.
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In another medium bowl, combine the garbanzo beans, chopped tomatoes, chopped kalamata olives, green onions, goat cheese, and pesto.  Mix together and taste to your liking.  In a smaller bowl, mix together the chopped fresh dill and yogurt and set aside.
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Now, place the salmon patties on the high heat, and grill for 5-7 minutes on each side or until done. Simultaneously grill the zucchini boats by placing them scooped-side down for 5 minutes, then flip over for an additional 5 minutes or until tender.  As burgers come close to being done, halve the Naan bread and place on the grill to heat up.  Remove the zucchini boats from the grill and fill in with your goat cheese veggie mix.  Remove patties from the grill, place on Naan bread with romaine lettuce and a huge dollop of the dill yogurt mix.
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HOW GOOD do these look?! And I have to say, the salmon burger was equally as delicious as its red meat counterparts. Now get to grillin’!

More on the Grill: Lamb + Homemade Tzatziki

21 Apr

Give up red meat for Lent? Well, with the passing of Easter yesterday you can now thoroughly enjoy this recipe guilt-free.  I’m a huge lamb fan, and it’s surprisingly hard to come by in your average grocery store.  When the craving hit, I knew I was going to have to bite the bullet and walk to the Whole Foods meat department.  To my delight, they were having a sale and I bought a pound of butterflied lamb leg for $8.99 (Score!).

Beautiful, isn’t it?

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Set the oven to 350 degrees in preparation for the brussel sprouts.  Thoroughly season the lamb with salt, pepper, garlic, and any other grill seasoning mix you have on hand.  Throw on the grill on high heat.  While your lamb is sizzling, whip up this super easy tzatziki recipe.  I found this one in a recipe book given to me a while back. All you need is 1 single size 2% plain greek yogurt, a cucumber, minced garlic, lemon juice, and fresh mint.

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I’m anti-measuring and like to mix things to taste, adding here and there.  I started with half a cucumber (diced), a heaping spoonful of minced garlic, the juice from two lemon wedges, and probably 1.5 tablespoons of finely chopped mint.  Feel free to start with less, mix together and add as needed.  You want the resulting spoonful to have a cohesive flavor profile of all ingredients.  Set aside the tzatziki and bring out your brussel sprouts.  Slice in half, drizzle with olive oil, and bake for 15-20 minutes.  The first time I did this, I admittedly did NOT slice the sprouts in half and they didn’t cook all the way through #bummer.  But they sure do look nice and crispy on the outside!

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After your lamb has cooked to the temperature of your liking, assemble your plate and don the meat with a few heaping spoonfuls of tzatziki.  I like mine medium-rare and confess to being a huge snob about it.

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There you have it! A deliciously healthy way to enjoy your post-Lent dinners!

Grill Season! Tuna & Tortellini

14 Apr

How phenomenal was the weather in DC this past weekend?! Everyone get to be outside I hope? See the cherry blossoms before they’re past their prime? Solid sunshine for the entire weekend allowed me to do one of my absolute favorite things- fire up the grill on my deck and cook a delicious, healthy, and affordable springtime meal (or should I say summer already?). A recent roommate trip to Giant left me fully equipped; I had a nice piece of fresh tuna, a package of spinach tortellini, and some summery wheat beer to enjoy.  As I’m sure you’re aware, Giant is a preferable alternative to Whole Foods or Harris Teeter from a financial standpoint because the quality (i.e. fresh seafood) is still great.  The tuna was $4.99 a piece, so I spent roughly $15 including the beer.  My kind of dinner price point on a Friday evening in the District!

I made sure to be a good DC resident and document the blossoms during their peak moments, something I’ve been remiss in doing the past two years (oops).

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On the grill– seasoned with tons of garlic powder, salt, pepper, and a secret spice mix.  Cook on high for 4-5 minutes per side, depending on how you like it.

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My bottle of Oberon, spinach tortellini loaded with Parmesan cheese and lemon pepper, and the tuna with Dijon mustard for even more flavor.

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As a self-dubbed Grillmaster, you can be sure there will be a ton of grill posts to come!


So close to wine


Discovering new Foodventures with each bite

A Stairway To Fashion

imagination is the key

Madison Sheffer

a creative communicator

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