Chorizo Burgers with Slaw

Chorizo Burgers with Slaw

Rumor has it that it’s going to be another hard winter- ugh. So, we are trying to squeeze in as many grilling days as possible before summer is really over. Also with winter on its way (I am not trying to rush things here!), we have our orders of organic beef and pork coming in from a local farm. Therefore, we need to finish up the meat we have still in the freezer. (Which is still quite a bit.)

I thought a great way to use up some beef and sausage was to combine them! I like to add some spices to cover the slight gamey taste of the organic meat. And slaw on top of the burgers? Yes please! The flavor combinations were just fantastic. These burgers made a great dinner to celebrate a beautiful summer evening.

Chorizo Burgers with Slaw

Yield: 5-6 burgers

For the burgers

  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 lb. chorizo sausages, casings removed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

For the slaw

  • 4 cups chopped cabbage
  • 4 Tablespoons mayo
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice

To serve


To prepare the slaw, place all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix until fully incorporated. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator until ready to use.

To prepare the burgers, place the chorizo and beef in a large bowl. In a small bowl, stir together the salt, pepper, cumin and garlic powder. Sprinkle over the meat and mix with your hands until the the spices are evenly distributed and the meat is mixed together. Form the mixture into desired size patties.

Oil the grill grates so the burgers won’t stick.  Grill the burgers until completely cooked through. To serve, place burgers on toasted buns, and top with about 1/4 cup of the prepared slaw on each burger. Enjoy!

Island Bakes Original


Teriyaki Grilled Pork Chops

Teriyaki Grilled Pork Chops

Now that we have a new grill, I have been combing over grilling recipes. My favorite type is to marinate meat then throw it on the grill. It makes an easy, yet flavorful meal quickly! These pork chops were definitely up to par in my book. They are full of flavor and wonderfully tender. I served these alongside a fresh garden salad and grilled corn. Delicious! I will definitely be making these again.

Teriyaki Grilled Pork Chops

Yield: 4-6 servings

  • 2/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 4-6 pork chops, trimmed of any excess fat


For the marinade, combine all the ingredients except pork chops in a small saucepan.  Bring to a boil  over medium-high heat and stir with a whisk until the brown sugar is dissolved.  Cool the marinade completely.

Place the pork chops in a large plastic bag and pour the marinade over them.  Seal the bag, pressing out excess air.  Allow chops to marinate, turning bag once or twice, at least 6 hours or overnight.

Grill chops on an oiled rack, approximately 7-8 minutes per side, or until just cooked through, basting with left over marinade during the last 5 minutes of cooking (if desired). Serve hot.

Source: Annie’s Eats, originally adapted from Gourmet Magazine

Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Maple Glaze


Any meat (besides chicken) that is roasted, is something I am still a little intimidated by. For some reason, I am sometimes weird about cooking meat. So, I will make my husband do it. I guess because I haven’t had a lot of experience, especially with roasts. Since we get an entire pig and half a cow every winter, we get a lot of different cuts of meat. In fact, it practically fills our whole box freezer, with little room to spare. (Maybe just enough room for a box of frozen blueberries and a million boxes of thin mint girl scout cookies-ha!)

We had two small pork tenderloins that didn’t look to intimidating to me. So, I thought that I would try it out a recipe and see what came of it. Basically any recipe I have tried from the fool-proof America’s Test Kitchen has come out delicious. This particular recipe was a cinch. In fact, I wish we had more tenderloins! The meat is tender with the slightly sweet glaze. It is amazing. Served with some mashed potatoes and green beans, and you have yourself a hearty meal.

Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Maple Glaze

  • 2 (1-pound) pork tenderloin, trimmed of all visible fat
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil or grapeseed oil

For the glaze

  • 1 1/4 cups pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper


Preheat the oven to 450ºF and adjust a rack to the lower-middle position.

Pat the tenderloins dry with paper towels and season both sides with salt and pepper.

Heat the oil in a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Brown the tenderloins well on all sides, 5-10 minutes. Transfer to a 9×13 inch baking dish.

To make the glaze, drain any fat from the pan used to brown the tenderloins. Stir together the maple syrup, cinnamon, cloves and cayenne pepper, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Bring to a simmer and cook until slightly thickened and fragrant, about 1 minute. Take off the heat and brush the glaze over the tenderloins.

Roast in the oven until the tenderloins registers 170º on an instant-read thermometer, 15-20minutes, flipping the tenderloins over halfway through baking.

Transfer the pork to a carving board, tent loosely with tin foil, and let rest for 10 minutes. Slice the pork thin and serve.

Source: Adapted from The America’s Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook

Crunchy Baked Pork Chops


Pork is something that I didn’t really grow up eating (besides bacon). Probably because I was too picky to try it anyway! My husband on the other hand, absolutely loves it. He is huge into pork chops, ham steaks etc. Considering we get meat from an entire pig every winter from a local organic farm, we now eat a lot of pork. Chops are one of the more popular cuts we ask for. They are versatile and tasty.

This is one of my favorite pork chop recipes. It always comes out so tender and delicious. It is a popular dish with everyone in the family. It’s great alongside anything! My favorite paired side is a green salad or mashed potatoes. Yum yum!

Crunchy Baked Pork Chops

Yield: 4 servings

  • table salt
  • 4 boneless center-cut pork chops, 6 to 8 ounces each, 3/4 to 1 inch thick, trimmed of excess fat
  • 3 1/2 cups panko
  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 3 medium garlic cloves, minced or pressed through garlic press
  • 3 Tablespoons vegetable oil or grapeseed oil
  • ground black pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 Tablespoon dried parsley
  • 1/4 cup plus 6 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 3 Tablespoons Dijon mustard


Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350ºF. Dissolve 1/4 cup salt in 1 quart water in medium container or gallon-sized zipper-lock bag. Submerge chops, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate 30 minutes. Rinse chops under cold water and dry thoroughly with paper towels.

Spread panko on a rimmed baking sheet and add shallot, garlic, oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Toss until the panko is evenly coated with oil. Bake until deep golden brown and dry, about 15 minutes, stirring twice during baking time. (Do not turn off oven.) Cool to room temperature. Toss panko mixture with the parmesan, thyme, and parsley.

Place 1/4 cup flour in pie plate. In second pie plate, whisk the egg whites and mustard until combined; add remaining 6 tablespoons flour and whisk until almost smooth, with pea-sized lumps remaining.

Increase oven temperature to 425ºF. Spray a wire rack with nonstick cooking spray and place in rimmed baking sheet. Season chops with pepper. Dredge 1 pork chop in flour; shake off excess. Using tongs, coat with egg mixture; let excess drip off. Coat all sides of chop with panko mixture, pressing gently so that thick layer of crumbs adheres to the chop. Transfer the breaded chop to the wire rack. Repeat with remaining 3 chops.

Bake until an instant-read thermometer inserted into center of chops registers 170ºF, 20 to 30 minutes. Let rest on rack 5 minutes before serving.

Source: Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

Chorizo Flatbread Sandwiches


Does anyone else go through spurts of wanting to cook constantly, making several things in one day, then all of a sudden it stops and the idea of cooking dinner is a drag? Maybe I stand alone, but I definitely go through that occasionally. Especially when it’s super hot in the house or I have been busy all day, dinner is just one more thing added to the list of things to do. Since I know that I get negligent with dinner preparations occasionally, I make sure to put a few simple and quick meals on the menu for the week.

This recipe is definitely when I am inspired to take some time with dinner. I made the flatbread earlier in the day, so when it came to dinner time, I only had to cook the sausage and vegetables. I made it much easier for myself that way! You could even cook the flatbread a day in advance and reheat them the day of consuming in the oven a little so they taste freshly made!

For the past couple of years we have been ordering our meat from a local farm, Old Ackley Farm. This year, we ended up with an abundance of chorizo sausage. In result, I have been trying and inventing new recipes to use up the immense box in our freezer. It has been a lot of fun!


The strange thing about it is, I never liked sausage until I had it from Old Ackley. And I still won’t eat any other kind!

This recipe was inspired by the lovely Kyra Alex. It is sooo good. I couldn’t wait to have left overs the next day for lunch. It takes a bit of time to cook, but it is definitely worth it. Also, instead of the skillet, you could easily grill the flatbread and the chorizo.

Chorizo Flatbread Sandwiches

For the Flatbread

  • 2 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons rapid rise (instant) yeast
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil, plus more for rolling out


In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, yeast and salt. In a 1 cup measuring cup, combine the water and oil. Stir the oil mixture into the flour. Stir until a is dough formed and all the flour is incorporated.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead the dough until smooth, about 2 minutes.

Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and turn to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until double, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

When the dough has risen, lightly punch it down and turn out onto a dry counter. Gently tear off chunks of dough in desired size. Drizzle a little olive oil on both sides of a dough piece, and roll into an 1/8-inch thick round. (I rolled out two at a time while two were cooking.)

Heat a skillet (or two if you are good at multi-tasking!) over medium heat. Place a rolled out piece of dough in the skillet and cook, until lightly browned on each side, about 2 minutes per side. Place the cooked flatbread on a wire rack so moisture doesn’t build on the bottom. Continue to cook each rolled out dough, until all the dough is gone.

Serve hot or at room temperature. Alternatively, after completely cool, freeze in an air-tight bag.

For Chorizo Sandwiches

  • 1 12 oz. package of chorizo sausage (if sausage is thick, slice in half lengthwise) 
  • 4 medium onions, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 green and/or red bell peppers, thinly sliced
  • 6 Tablespoons grapeseed oil, divided


In a medium skillet over medium heat, heat 4 tablespoons of grapeseed oil. Add the onions and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and caramelized, about 20-25 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

In the same skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. Stir in the bell peppers and cook until softened, 8-10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in another skillet over medium heat, cook the sausage until dark brown on all sides and cooked through. Drain the cooked sausage on a paper towel-lined plate.

To assemble sandwiches, place a couple of sausages in the center of a flatbread. Layer with desired amount of onions and peppers. Fold over and consume! Serve alongside a salad and enjoy!

Source: Flatbread Adapted from Lily’s House

Pasta e Fagioli


My poor son and husband have had a nasty cold for about 3 weeks now, and I thought that I might get lucky and it would skip me for once. But, alas, it finally caught up with me this past weekend. Sore throat and congestion made me want some feel-good soup.

This soup definitely fit the bill. It’s hearty, chock full of beans, vegetables, sausage and pasta.  To me, that is a win all around. And it makes plenty of leftovers, which makes perfect lunches for most of the week!

Pasta e Fagioli

  • 2 Tablespoons butter, divided
  • 20 oz. sausage, casings removed (I used 8 organic chorizo sausage that we get from the wonderful Old Ackley Farm)
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 4 stalks celery, thinly sliced
  • 1 28oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can cannelini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 32 oz. (or more if desired) of reduced, or no sodium beef broth
  • 1 28oz. can tomato sauce
  • 2 teaspoons dried parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 6 oz. small pasta (I used ditalini, it’s so cute!)


Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the sausage to the pot and brown, crumbling as it cooks. Once the sausage is browned, remove it from the pot with a slotted spoon and transfer to a bowl. Remove an excess grease.

Melt the remaining tablespoon of butter in the pot. Add the onion, garlic, carrots and celery, and sauté over medium heat until the vegetables are soft, 8-10 minutes. Return the sausage to the pot, add the can of diced tomatoes with their juices, stir briefly, and simmer for 10 minutes.

Add both beans, broth, and tomato sauce to the pot. Add the parsley, basil, and salt. Stir well. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.

Then, add the pasta, partially cover, and simmer for another 30 minutes. Adjust seasonings to taste, and serve.

Source: Adapted from Annie’s Eats