The other day I had a conversation with a friend about the ridiculousness that sometimes infiltrates our lives, and soon we begin to accept it as routine and normal. Then someone visits your home, and you see everything through their eyes, and you're like, How did it get to this and are we the weirdest people ever?!?!
I had one of those moments of realization the other morning as I was carrying one of our two dogs down the stairs so they wouldn't bark like they're being physically harmed and race each other down the stairs to greet my husband coming home from the overnight shift. This ritual happens every couple weeks or so, and I will do just about anything to prevent the chaos that is the dogs greeting him at the door because it is far too early for our son to wake up. Other examples of ridiculousness? How about accepting that sheets protecting your furniture from dog hair and dirt looks okay enough for company. Or that strategically placing a towel under your youngest dog when she curls up next to you on the couch because she is a bed wetter is perfectly acceptable. Or keeping diapers and wipes on your kitchen table for easy access. Or keeping your kid's shoes on the kitchen table so the puppy won't chew them up. These things just become part of the decor and routine. Please tell me I'm not alone on this. ;)
Maybe that is just the way it goes in family life, or maybe it's just part of getting older and accepting reality. I really don't know, but the only thing you can do sometimes is just laugh. Laugh at the ridiculousness, but also laugh because you know these things are temporary and will become really great stories and fond memories later in life.
I dare say food habits can get like that too. When my siblings and I were little, we used to eat black olives straight out of the can. My mom used to love her peanut butter and butter sandwiches. In college, my freshman year roommate and I would live on pickles wrapped in deli meat. I know I'm not alone on this. Unusual becomes ordinary pretty quickly.
I remember the first time I made these Asian turkey burgers for the sorority girls I used to cook for in Oregon. Pretty sure some of them thought I'd lost it. I remember cringing a little as they squeezed ketchup all over their burgers, refusing to try the slaw or the Sriracha sesame mayo. Luckily, it only took a few girls to try it all together and spread the word that I wasn't off my rocker after all. Eventually it became a regularly occurring dish at the house, and occasionally they would even line up at the door for it. These burgers will always remind me of that job and the girls and how quickly something a little "weird" can become ordinary and routine.
I love these burgers so much for a weeknight meal. They are seriously packed with zingy flavors like ginger, garlic, and cilantro, and the slaw really adds a brightness, freshness, and crunchiness that really complements the burger. The Sriracha sesame mayo is a must (use low fat mayo if you must) and is amazing with both the roasted potato wedges and the burger too...be warned, it's a little addicting. I hope you'll give these burgers a try, and I really hope these become your "routine and ordinary" too.
Do you have a ridiculous part of your day or routine that has become normal to you? I wanna know! Comment below and let me know I'm not alone, ha ha!
Asian Turkey Burgers with Sriracha Sesame Mayo and Roasted Potato Wedges
This is one of my favorite weeknight meals. Not only is it healthy, but it's packed with flavor and a fun twist on the standard turkey burger. Don't forget to make the Sriracha Sesame Mayo - it makes the dish!
Yield: 4 burgers (1/4 lb. each)
4 burger buns, or Kaiser rolls
1 lb. ground turkey
handful cilantro, chopped
1 Tbsp. fresh ginger, grated
1 Tbsp. red onion, grated
1 Tbsp. fresh garlic, grated (about 2 cloves)
1 tsp. Kosher salt
2 Tbsp. sweet chili sauce
1/2 cup plain bread crumbs, as needed
2 medium carrots
1 medium cucumber
1/2 medium sized red onion, cut into strips
handful cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/2 tsp. Kosher salt
1 Tbsp. sugar
Sriracha Sesame Mayo:
1 cup mayo
1 Tbsp. sesame oil
1 tsp. Sriracha sauce
Roasted Potato Wedges:
2 lbs. Idaho (russet) potatoes
Olive oil, for drizzling
Kosher salt, as needed
- Preheat oven to 425 F (convection mode if you have it). Wash the potatoes and pat dry. Cut the potatoes in half lengthwise. Lay the flat sides down on the cutting board. Cut each half again right down the middle lengthwise. Cut each quarter again down the middle lengthwise at an angle (be careful). Put the wedges in a large bowl and drizzle with olive oil, toss to coat. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper (very important!). Spread out the wedges in a single layer on the baking sheet, and sprinkle with Kosher salt. Bake at 425 F for about 40 minutes or until golden brown, flipping and stirring the wedges a couple times during the cooking process.
- Peel the carrots, and use a veggie peeler to make long ribbons. Peel the cucumber, slice in half lengthwise, and scrape out the seeded part with a spoon. Use a veggie peeler and make long ribbons using the entire length of the cucumber. Combine all the ingredients for the slaw in a medium sized bowl, and mix well. (If you aren't comfortable doing the ribbons with the veggie peeler, just cut the veggies into thin strips. Do the best you can, and don't sweat it...it will still taste good!) Cover and refrigerate.
- Combine all the ingredients for the burgers in a large bowl. Use clean hands and mix well. Add more bread crumbs as needed (some brands of ground turkey have more water content than others). Divide into 4 equally sized meatballs. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat and coat the pan with vegetable oil. When the pan is hot, place two of the meatballs in the pan (they should sizzle). Immediately flatten the meatballs out with a spatula to make the burger patty. Brown each side about 1-2 minutes, then transfer to a lined or greased baking sheet (still raw in the middle). Repeat with the last two burgers. Finish cooking the burgers in the oven (beneath the potato wedges) for about 15 minutes or until the internal temp registers 165 F on a digital thermometer.
- Brush the insides of the burger buns with oil and lay them out on another baking sheet, inside sides up. Toast the buns in the oven for a few minutes.
- Combine all the ingredients for the Sriracha sesame mayo in a small bowl and mix well.
- Assemble the burgers on the toasted buns with the slaw and the Sriracha sesame mayo. Serve the potato wedges with the Sriracha sesame mayo as well. Enjoy!
- You can find sweet chili sauce, Sriracha, sesame oil, and rice wine vinegar in most ethnic sections of grocery stores.
- If you don't have bread crumbs on hand, you can use 1-2 slices of bread and buzz them up in a food processor. I use the heels of bread all the time, and they work great.