Tag Archives: turkey

Healthy Southwestern Stuffed Peppers

Stuffed peppers are so easy to make, and they are perfect for quick summer dinners or weeknight meals during the school year. They even store well, so if you have extras, you can always wrap them up and reheat later for a five-minute meal.

Healthy Southwestern Stuffed Peppers

Often, sweet bell peppers are stuffed with a hearty beef mixture, but sometimes we want to lighten things up a bit. Here, we offer a healthier version by substituting ground turkey, which is a leaner meat, and adding lots of veggies and spices to create a southwestern, Tex-Mex style pepper. When we add plenty of spices, like the ones in the jar of salsa used in this recipe, we get tons of flavor without having to use much fat.

Healthy Southwestern Stuffed Peppers

Once the meat, veggie and salsa mixture cooks through, the peppers get stuffed. We have them laying directly on a toaster oven tray, and while ours laid flat on their own, you can cut a little sliver off the bottom if yours start wobbling or falling over.

We are making these in our toaster oven so we don’t have to turn on our big oven and heat up the entire kitchen. They will cook just as quickly and the kitchen will stay nice and cool.

Healthy Southwestern Stuffed Peppers

Topping the stuffed peppers with shredded cheese before they go into the toaster oven gives these southwest peppers the perfect melty topping they need. How good does that look?

Healthy Southwestern Stuffed Peppers

After the peppers cook through to your liking, pull them from the toaster oven. Serve them with any toppings you desire, such as sour cream, more cheese, cilantro or extra salsa. These southwest stuffed peppers offer the spicy, colorful kick dinner needs to stay exciting, and there’s not an ounce of guilt involved with this healthy version.

Healthy Southwestern Stuffed Peppers


Healthy Southwest Stuffed Peppers
SERVES: 6

Ingredients
1 tablespoon oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 pound ground turkey
1/2 cup drained black beans
1/2 cup whole kernel corn
1 jar (16 ounces) medium salsa, divided
1/2 cup cooked white rice
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
3 medium peppers, halved lengthwise leaving stem on, seeded
1/3 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided
Sour cream
Chopped fresh cilantro
Instructions
Heat oven to 350°F. Spray baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
In a large skillet over medium-high, heat oil. Add onion and garlic, cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
Add turkey to skillet, cook, stirring frequently, for 6 to 8 minutes or until turkey is cooked through.
Stir black beans, corn, 1/2 cup salsa, rice, chili powder, salt, cumin and pepper into turkey mixture.
Fill each pepper half with turkey mixture, dividing mixture evenly among peppers.
Top each pepper half with remaining salsa.
Bake 20 minutes. Sprinkle with cheese and bake an additional 10 minutes or until heated through.
Top with sour cream and cilantro.
Notes
TEST KITCHEN TIP: Use mild salsa for a less spicy stuffed pepper.
Everyday Good Thinking http://everydaygoodthinking.com/

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Slow Cooker Italian Wedding Soup from Everyday Good Thinking by @hamiltonbeach

I don’t know what it is about this time of year, but for some reason, everyone in my house is working late, traveling and running from event to event. Long nights and busy weekends don’t make for good food choices and it’s tough to spend a Sunday meticulously preparing lunches for the week ahead. We’ve been ordering take out and pizza more often than I’d like to admit. But that’s going to stop – because now I have foolproof slow cooker recipes like this comforting Italian Wedding Soup.

Slow Cooker Italian Wedding Soup from Everyday Good Thinking by @hamiltonbeach

Instead of making poor choices so early in the year and destroying all the progress we’ve made towards our nutrition goals, this simple soup has come to our rescue. We make this hearty soup filled with healthy ingredients in the slow cooker. It takes a few minutes to prepare the meatballs, and, within a few hours, the entire house is filled with the inviting aromas of Italian ingredients, savory broth, turkey meatballs, spinach and pasta. Bring the crock to the table and add parmesan and freshly cracked pepper. Your whole family will love it and you can easily reheat leftovers during the hectic week ahead.

Slow Cooker Italian Wedding Soup from Everyday Good Thinking by @hamiltonbeach

Slow Cooker Italian Wedding Soup from Everyday Good Thinking by @hamiltonbeach


Slow Cooker Italian Wedding Soup
SERVES: 6

Ingredients
1 pound ground turkey
2 large eggs, beaten
1 large onion, chopped, divided
1/2 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1/2 cup chopped parsley
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon coarse black pepper
2 containers (32 ounces each) chicken broth
1 cup ditalini pasta
3 cups fresh spinach leaves
Instructions
Stir turkey, eggs, 1/2 of the onion, bread crumbs, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, parsley, garlic, oregano, salt and pepper in a large bowl until well blended. Roll turkey mixture into balls using 1 tablespoon per meatball.
Add meatballs and remaining ingredients, except pasta and spinach to slow cooker crock.
Cover slow cooker and cook on HIGH for 3 to 3 1/2 hours or LOW for 6 to 6 1/2. Add pasta, cover and continue cooking for 15 minutes until pasta is tender and meatballs are cooked through.
Stir in spinach and remaining Parmesan cheese before serving. Garnish with Parmesan cheese and coarse black pepper.
Everyday Good Thinking http://everydaygoodthinking.com/

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slow cooker

For the cook who is busy all day but wants a home-cooked dinner at night, a slow cooker is the answer. And with the Set & Forget® Programmable Slow Cooker, technology takes a big leap forward from the outdated slow cookers found in yesterday’s kitchens.

 



How to Carve a Turkey with an Electric Knife from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @hamiltonbeach

A perfectly carved turkey makes for a beautiful presentation at Thanksgiving dinner. The breasts are pre-sliced and laid out nicely, the dark meat is sliced and placed in the center of the platter and it’s all topped with every dad and little brother’s favorite: turkey legs. Unfortunately, achieving the perfect carve is not always easy. We’ve created a guide to get you started using our heritage electric knife products that allow for a perfect cut with little effort.

How to Carve a Turkey with an Electric Knife from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @hamiltonbeach

After your turkey has rested for 20-30 minutes, cut the string you used to truss the turkey. (For more info on trussing a turkey, tune in to the blog tomorrow.) Make sure the turkey is sitting on a large cutting board, with another cutting board and a platter nearby.

How to Carve a Turkey with an Electric Knife from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @hamiltonbeach

Next, use a carving fork to stabilize the bird on a cutting board. If you need more stabilization to get a good cut, set the turkey on a kitchen towel. Remove the leg quarters first. Use the electric knife to cut the skin between the leg and the breast, exposing the ball joint. Start with gentle cuts so you can see where you are going.

How to Carve a Turkey with an Electric Knife from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @hamiltonbeach

When you get halfway to the bone, pull the leg down and cut straight through the joint, removing the leg and thigh. Do this for both sides and place the quarters on the spare cutting board.

How to Carve a Turkey with an Electric Knife from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @hamiltonbeach

Follow this same basic procedure to remove the wings and set them aside on the cutting board with the legs.

How to Carve a Turkey with an Electric Knife from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @hamiltonbeach

Now you can begin to separate the breast meat. Find the breastbone, and carefully cut down along the ribcage to remove the breast from the turkey. As you get toward the bottom, you can then slice up the bottom at an angle, making it easier to remove.

How to Carve a Turkey with an Electric Knife from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @hamiltonbeach

Follow on both sides and set the breasts aside. You can now toss the carcass or save it for a delicious homemade stock. You can also use the wings for the stock, as many people prefer not to serve them on their Thanksgiving platters.

How to Carve a Turkey with an Electric Knife from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @hamiltonbeach

Now, it’s time to start slicing and plating your turkey. Start with the breasts, carefully slicing the meat down with the electric knife and then pulling it out. You should avoid sawing the meat; it’s not necessary with an electric knife. To place the sliced breast on the platter, carefully put the knife, a fork or a spatula under the breast and carry it to the platter. Gently slide the breast off, and it should all stay together.

How to Carve a Turkey with an Electric Knife from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @hamiltonbeach

Next, cut the thighs. Take one thigh at a time from the secondary cutting board and separate the leg at the joint. Place the leg aside if you want to serve them whole. If you’d rather cut that meat, too, use the same basic technique as the thigh, but be careful to remove all the bones and cartilage first.

How to Carve a Turkey with an Electric Knife from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @hamiltonbeach

Lay the thigh skin-side down on the cutting board. Using your fingers or a paring knife, carefully remove the bone from the center. Feel around with your fingers to make sure there is no lingering cartilage.

How to Carve a Turkey with an Electric Knife from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @hamiltonbeach

Roll the thigh up and cut it into slices with the skin side up. Carefully transfer them to the platter.

How to Carve a Turkey with an Electric Knife from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @hamiltonbeach

To plate our turkey, we put the breasts on the sides, the thigh meat down the center and the drumsticks on top. The turkey carcass and the wings will be used for stock, and this perfectly carved masterpiece is ready for the holiday table.

How to Carve a Turkey with an Electric Knife from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @hamiltonbeach

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Hamilton Beach® Electric Knives feature two serrated stainless-steel blades that rapidly move back and forth to create even slices of any thickness. Whether you’re carving the Thanksgiving turkey or slicing ham and cheese for sandwiches, these knives let you slice like a pro with little effort.

32229-1Hamilton Beach® Roaster Ovens are handy for cooking at home or feeding larger groups of friends and family. These popular roaster ovens bake, roast and cook like traditional ovens, and you can use them to steam and slow-cook as well. Innovation is evident in the buffet-friendly lid; it’s the first one to pivot out of the way for serving.



Does Brining the Turkey Make a Difference? Everyday Good Thinking from @hamiltonbeach conducted The Ultimate Taste Test to find out! http://everydaygoodthinking.com

Brining: that time-consuming, pain-in-the-behind piece of Thanksgiving turkey prep everyone hates to do, but feels is necessary. Why do we do it? Why is it important? Is it actually important? Does it make a difference in taste? Is it worth all the extra effort? Well, we heard your questions (and your confusion) and decided to test it all out. We’d get to the bottom of brining through a controlled taste test in our Test Kitchen. Here’s what we did and what we found out.

Does Brining the Turkey Make a Difference? Everyday Good Thinking from @hamiltonbeach conducted The Ultimate Taste Test to find out! http://everydaygoodthinking.com

When we designed our methods, we wanted to take into account many things, not just the general taste, but also the color, texture and juiciness of each bird. We created a ranking system for judging both the white meat and dark meat separately, and we ranked the different birds on aroma, appearance, color, juiciness, tenderness, texture, flavor, aftertaste and overall impression. Then, we decided to test four different brining methods.

A) Plain salt brine – 24 hours

B) Highly flavored citrus salt brine – 24 hours

C) Plain salt brine – 4 hours

D) No brining

Does Brining the Turkey Make a Difference? Everyday Good Thinking from @hamiltonbeach conducted The Ultimate Taste Test to find out! http://everydaygoodthinking.comWe chose these different brines because they are the most common. The plain salt brine (A) is your standard brine. We let it brine for 24 hours in the fridge. The flavored brine (B) contained orange, salt, sugar and lots of herbs. It was highly flavored compared to a standard salt brine. The other plain salt brine (C) was a brine we imagined people might try if they forgot to brine their turkey the day before. It was a quick brine you might try out on Thanksgiving morning when you realized your mistake. The last turkey had no brine (D) at all. All of our turkeys were about 16 pounds, and they were all cooked in Hamilton Beach roaster ovens until the thigh temperature met 165°F. All the turkeys used our favorite turkey recipe.

Does Brining the Turkey Make a Difference? Everyday Good Thinking from @hamiltonbeach conducted The Ultimate Taste Test to find out! http://everydaygoodthinking.com

We employed six testers of the taste test, each with varying levels of experience cooking turkey. We sat around the table and tasted the turkeys one by one, with water and saltine crackers to clear our palettes between each bird. We discussed the turkeys as we tried them and took some notes. No one knew which bird they were trying, as it was important to us to do a blind tasting.

Does Brining the Turkey Make a Difference? Everyday Good Thinking from @hamiltonbeach conducted The Ultimate Taste Test to find out! http://everydaygoodthinking.com

Turkey A was moist and flavorful, with equally good light and dark meat. Even the testers who preferred dark meat were surprised with the texture and tenderness of this bird. Everyone thought it tasted very fresh. Some comments were “Mmmmmmmmm” and “Wow, I’m surprised how good this turkey is”. Our favorite comment was, “I can’t believe how much this one brings out the flavor of…well, turkey!”

Does Brining the Turkey Make a Difference? Everyday Good Thinking from @hamiltonbeach conducted The Ultimate Taste Test to find out! http://everydaygoodthinking.com

The second turkey we tried received less than stellar results. Tasters described Turkey B as tasting a little “off” and noticed the turkey had an almost greenish tint. This was far less noticeable in the dark meat than the white meat, but no one chose this turkey as their favorite.  

Does Brining the Turkey Make a Difference? Everyday Good Thinking from @hamiltonbeach conducted The Ultimate Taste Test to find out! http://everydaygoodthinking.com

Turkey C was our “Oops, I forgot to brine!” turkey, with only four hours in the salt brine. Testers described this turkey as flavorful, but a little saltier than they’d prefer. The color was good and the texture was okay, but not a little chalky. After we discovered this turkey was only brined for a few hours, we talked about why it might not be as good as the first turkey we tried, which was brined for a full 24 hours.

Does Brining the Turkey Make a Difference? Everyday Good Thinking from @hamiltonbeach conducted The Ultimate Taste Test to find out! http://everydaygoodthinking.com

We concluded that the short brine was a pretty good idea in theory, but the short timeframe didn’t allow the salt and water to fully permeate the turkey and create the ideal equilibrium of salt in the fibers of the turkey.  

Does Brining the Turkey Make a Difference? Everyday Good Thinking from @hamiltonbeach conducted The Ultimate Taste Test to find out! http://everydaygoodthinking.com

 

Turkey D was flavorful, and ended up being the taster’s second favorite bird. We were all surprised that we liked the unbrined turkey so much. It was tasty and had a good color and aroma, but it was admittedly not as tender as the fully brined turkey.

Does Brining the Turkey Make a Difference? Everyday Good Thinking from @hamiltonbeach conducted The Ultimate Taste Test to find out! http://everydaygoodthinking.com

Afterward, the Test Kitchen cooks who administered our blind tasting gave us the descriptions of each turkey we tried. We were very surprised that we all overwhelming chose Turkey A as our favorite – that was the fully brined bird in the plain salt water brine. We were also very surprised that the other bird in a 24 hour brine (Turkey B) was our unanimous least favorite. We all agreed the citrus and herbs in the brine added a strange flavor to the bird we didn’t love.  

Does Brining the Turkey Make a Difference? Everyday Good Thinking from @hamiltonbeach conducted The Ultimate Taste Test to find out! http://everydaygoodthinking.com

In the end, we highly recommend brining your Thanksgiving turkey. It made a big difference in flavor and texture that all the testers agreed was worth the extra effort. However, we are disappointed to say that if you forget to brine your turkey the day before, it’s not worth doing a short brine the day of. The tasters felt the unbrined turkey was better than the turkey with a short brine, so if you forget, just skip it altogether and you’ll be alright. If you’re thinking of trying out a uniquely flavored brine, we suggest you go easy on the citrus. We hope this helps with your Thanksgiving planning. Gobble, gobble!

For the roaster oven turkey recipe we used for these tests, please click here.

For 10 ways to use your roaster oven for more than just turkey, please click here.

32229-1Hamilton Beach® Roaster Ovens are handy for cooking at home or feeding larger groups of friends and family. These popular roaster ovens bake, roast and cook like traditional ovens, and you can use them to steam and slow-cook as well. Innovation is evident in the buffet-friendly lid; it’s the first one to pivot out of the way for serving.