When I was in college, I thought the idea of opening my own cafe was awesome! Be your own boss, create your own menu, meet the people your food delights! What could be better, right? Then, my parents had their own restaurant, a humble (yet authentic) cheesesteak joint in LA. I would help them out on Saturdays and I never worked so hard in my life! Constant cleaning, prepping, shopping for ingredients, dealing with workers, customers, all while on your feet 12+ hours. Dude~ I don’t think I could sustain that lifestyle for long. However, if I had a cafe, it would be Asian inspired cafe favorites and this would be on the lunch menu. Enjoy!
Thai turkey burger (adapted from Food and Wine | June 2010)
1 cup of carrots, finely chopped
2 shallots, finely chopped (or 4 TB of onions)
2 TB vegetable oil (I used canola)
1/4 cup of cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup of basil, chopped
1/4 cup of green onions, chopped
1 jalapeno, chopped
2 TB chopped ginger
2 TB chopped garlic
3 TB fish sauce
1/2 cup breadcrumbs (I used panko)
1 1/4 lb ground turkey
1. In a frying pan over medium heat, saute the carrots and shallots in a little vegetable oil. Cook until tender and set aside.
2. In a large mixing bowl, add the turkey, cilantro, basil, green onions, ginger, garlic, fish sauce, bread crumbs, and egg. Using your hand, gently mix the ingredients together. Don’t overwrk the meat or it’ll get dry. Add carrots and shallots, again mixing gently. Shape into 6 equal patties or 12 mini patties for sliders.
3. In the same frying pan (as you used in step 1) drizzle some oil over medium heat and place the burgers on the pan to cook. About 5 minutes on each side (I put a lid on it).
4. Serve on a bun with some mayonnaise. I like to top mine with tomatoes and argula or spinach. Trader Joe’s has a great wasabi mayo for the adventurous foodies or I’ve also made my own sriracha mayo in going with the Asian theme.
Curried Coleslaw (adapted from weekofmenus)
1/2 head of cabbage, thinly sliced
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped into small pieces
1 carrot, peeled and julienned
1/2 cup, cilantro, roughly chopped
1/4 cup of rice vinegar
1/3 cup of canola oil
2 TB curry powder
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp black pepper
2 TB plain yogurt
1. In a large bowl, toss the veggies.
2. In a smaller bowl, make the dressing by whisking the curry powder, vinegar, salt and pepper until the salt dissolves. Whisk in the yogurt and oil until well combined.
3. Before serving, drizzle the curry dressing over cabbage mixture. Toss until everything is well coated.
Tip: I like to let this sit in the fridge for about 30 minutes before serving so the veggies can really soak in the curry flavors.