Today is only Wednesday, yet surprisingly I have already repeated two brand new recipes in the space of three days. Just goes to show you how good they are. The first was the Warm Butternut Squash and Chickpea Salad with Tahini Dressing from Sunday night. Couldn’t wait to have it again and made it for the second time last night to feast on for lunch for the rest of the week. And lest I forget, thanks for all your tips on dealing with hard-to-cut squash, nuking it worked like a charm – you guys are the best!
Faye: Hint: If you microwave the WHOLE squash for several minutes (depending on the size) let it cool slightly…it will peel SO much easier.
Stephanie: if you have a trader joe’s near by, they have already cut & peeled butternut squash & it’s delicious!
Angie: …try poking some holes in that squash and nuking it for 5 minutes or so. It’ll soften it just enough to make peeling and dicing a breeze!
The second new recipe I’ve repeated this week is the one for Beef and Black Bean Burgers. I made those also for dinner Sunday night, aiming to keep the menu summer-friendly, as the season is quickly slipping away from us, and they were so good, they made a quick and easy dinner tonight as we headed out for Nick’s Back to School night.
The recipe comes from Melissa d’Arabian, she of Ten Dollar Dinner fame, and so far, she’s produced nothing but delicious results. I would never have thought of including mashed up black beans into ground beef for burgers, but darn it if it doesn’t work. It gives you an extra dose of protein and stretches your ground beef buck. Between the extra moistness the beans and olive oil give the burger, and the slight tang of the Dijon mustard the recipe calls for, it adds up to one great batch of burgers.
On Sunday, I topped them with farmers market tomatoes and buttery avocados. Tonight’s version was topped with avocado, warm goat cheese and sliced red onion. Full of flavor and just minutes to pull together, if you’re itching to stretch out summer just a little bit longer like us, give these a try.
Oh, and because my grill was deemed habitable by some four legged creatures (it makes me itchy just thinking about it), my grill is no longer with us. But because of its misfortune, I can tell you that these taste simply smashing on your indoor grill pan, because that’s how I cooked ’em. Now it’s your turn.
- Want more recipe hits from Melissa? This is the Succulent Braised Pork we tried out last week. Last year, it was the OMG 5-Minute Individual Potato Gratins. And Perfect Crispy Potatoes.
- A year ago today: Was it really a year ago already that Sarah and her crew came to visit? Oh Cambozola, how I love thee.
- Two years ago today: Apple picking with my littles. Those chubby cheeks!
Even though we’re saying so long to summer, I’m already two holidays ahead, working on an article for a Thanksgiving centerpiece for the folks at Disney. I’ve got to say, this really is my favorite time of year. Halloween … Thanksgiving … Christmas … family traditions … homemade applesauce … apple picking … crisp Fall air. Just love it.
Beef and Black Bean Burgers
Recipe courtesy of Melissa d’Arabian and Ten Dollar Dinners
- 1/4 cup cooked black beans
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 pound ground beef
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 8 mini-hamburger buns
Preheat the grill. In a medium bowl, mash the black beans, 1 tablespoon olive oil, and garlic powder with a potato masher or fork until very creamy. Gently mix the black bean mixture with the ground beef. Season the mixture liberally with salt and pepper. Divide the mixture into 8 equally portioned thin patties. Using a pastry brush, lightly coat the outside of the patties with mustard. Lightly brush the grill with the oil and place the burgers on the hot grill. Cook the burgers until a golden crust is formed, about 1 to 2 minutes per side. Slice the mini buns in half and brush with the remaining oil. Place the buns on the grill until nicely toasted with grill marks. Serve the sliders on the toasted hamburger buns.