Minced meat is one of the quickest and easiest ingredients to work with when you are pressed for time. It’s also very versatile as it lends to an array of dishes: it can transformed into a scrumptious batch of meatballs, a juicy platter of burger patties, a succulent meatloaf, or a delectable filling for pot pies, wraps, etc. Truth be told, I had originally planned to try my hands at making homemade pork and beef burgers, but then I realized I forgot to pick up hamburger rolls. The next best bet was meatballs, but I didn’t have any tomato sauce. Then it popped in my head to make a sort of wrap.
I can’t recall working with minced meat in the past so I was a little sceptical of how things would turn out. In the end, the dish was a great success and the medley of flavours and textures worked well. I must say that I used a bunch of different spices and herbs. If you’re not into spicy foods for whatever reason, I advise cutting back on some of the spices, especially those that would cause some heat (cloves, black pepper, ginger, cumin).
Ground beef & pork – Ingredients
- ¾ lb. ground beef
- ¾ lb. ground pork
- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 3 sage leaves, chopped
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- ½ tsp. black pepper
- ½ tsp. celery salt
- ½ tsp. regular salt
- ⅛ tsp. ground cloves
- ½ tsp. ground coriander
- ¾ tsp. paprika
- ½ ground pimento
- ¼ tsp. ground cumin
- ¾ tsp. rosemary
- 1 tsp. dried cilantro
- Zest of one lime
- Juice of one lime
- 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp. balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp. olive oil for sauteeing
- Ensure ground pork and beef is fully defrosted.
- In a large skillet, heat olive oil on medium heat and sauté onion, garlic and sage leaves for 1 minute.
- Combine remaining herbs and spices with ground meat and add to hot skillet. Stir to combine and allow to cook for 7 to 8 minutes or until meat is fully brown and liquid evaporated.
- Add fresh lime juice and balsamic vinegar and stir to combine. Cook for an additional 2 minutes or until liquid had evaporated.
- Remove from heat and set aside.
Fillings – Ingredients
- carrot, finely shredded
- sushi ginger
- bell pepper, julienned
- banana peppers, roughly chopped
- tomatoes, quartered
- cheese, shredded [I used mild cheddar, but you can use your choice of favourite cheese(s)]
- cucumbers, cut into half moons
Method for assembling wraps
(I used whole wheat 6″ wraps)
- Warm the wraps in an oven for 1-2 minutes. (Ensure to not overheat as the wraps will dry out and get crispy, and will tear while rolling)
- Add your fillings of choice to wrap and roll, ensuring not to overfill the wrap.
- Insert toothpicks at either ends of the rolled wrap and cut on the diagonal in the centre.
- Enjoy immediately.
What do you guys think of this plating of the ground pork and beef?
The dish made a pretty tasty Monday night, post-gym dinner. You can have fun with whatever fresh veggies you have available.
I love to squeeze a few drops of fresh lime juice just before I eat them, for an added brightness and to help cut the richness of the meat.
Live. Love. Eat.
Tomatoes are in season. My dad, in one of his many trades has been growing a number of produce: lettuce, cabbage, eggplants, string beans, bell peppers, and tomatoes. On his somewhat random trips to Kingston he would bring an assortment of the morning’s freshest harvest. Right now my fridge is overgrown with vegetables of all sorts, awaiting their culinary fate. This morning, being the weekend – and partly due to last night’s fun and frolic – I rolled out of bed a little later than usual. As I walked pass this bag of perfectly ripe tomatoes I pondered on what I could use them for. Of course, my mind wasn’t comfortable enough with throwing them in a sandwich. I walked passed a few slices of bread – whole wheat, of course – and I immediately thought of bruschetta with fresh salsa. But somehow I was a little hungrier for just bread, tomatoes and onions. Then I remebered a can of black beans that I’ve been longing to use but just never got around to it. And so this dish was born.
3 slices whole wheat bread
1 can of black beans, rinsed and drained
2 fresh, ripe tomatoes, quartered
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
1 tbsp. capers
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
S&P to taste
2 tbsp. EVOO
1. Toast bread until crispy and golden brown. Set aside.
2. Soak chopped onions in cold water for 2-3 minutes to reduce bite.
3. Drain onions and combine with tomatoes, cilantro, lime juice, salt and pepper in food processor. Process until ingredients are chunky and fully combined.
4. In a mixing bowl combine with black beans and stir in EVOO. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.
5. Top toasted bread with black bean salsa.
6. Garnish with capers and enjoy immediately.
You would realize that I soaked the onions in cold water before adding them in the food processor. I find regular white onions can have a bit of a bite when used fresh; this reduces the kick and makes it more palatable…and reduces the impact on your breath 🙂
Bruschetta is traditionally done with French bread but it really doesn’t matter. Use what’s at your disposal and make it your own. With brunch the possibilities are really endless. Make it fun. Make it simple. Make it your own. One love, SC.
I just ran home from the gym, in the rain, and I am pretty famished. What can I make that’s quick but hearty and won’t undo what I just spent an hour and a half to achieve? Well, I opened my cupboard and found this staring me in the face.
And so the light bulb went off.
1 16 oz. can of fully cooked chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained
1 small onion, chopped
1 large garlic clove, finely chopped
1 medium tomato, chopped
1/2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
1 tbsp. fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
S&P to taste
EVOO to saute
1. In a skillet, saute onions, garlic, tomatoes, cumin seeds and fresh herbs in EVOO over medium heat for 2 minutes.
2. Add can of drained chickpeas and combine. Allow to heat through for 2 3 minutes.
3. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.
I love chickpeas; they’ve been a family favorite from I was a kid. Mom used to make them from scratch (you know, buying them in the pack and soaking overnight and cooking them in the pressure cooker… #aintnoboddygottimeforthat) almost every Sunday for breakfast and she would sometimes add tuna or pink salmon. They are packed with protein and fiber which makes them very filling…perfect for a post workout meal.
Chickpeas are much more versatile…they are the base for the oh-so-good hummus that’s enjoyed the world over, and even make a good curry. There’s even chickpea flour, commonly used in Indian cuisines.
Check back soon for more chickpea recipes.