Tuesday, January 21, 2014

{recipe} Cheddar Jalapeno Chicken Burgers with Guacamole.

I know it is winter and not really burger recipe, but a few weeks ago when it was unusually warm out I decide to mix things up a little and dust off our grill. I love burgers, but it is hard to find a good healthy alternative that doesn't leave you disappointed. When I found this recipe from one of my favorite food bloggers (Tara from Smells like Home) I knew it had to be good and worth testing out. It was amazing! The burger didn't dry out at all (which is my fear with ground chicken) and had tons of flavor! Enjoy!

{source: smells like home}

For the burgers:
1 ½ pounds ground chicken
½ small onion, chopped (about ½ cup)
¼ cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 small jalapeño, seeds and ribs removed (to tone down the heat if desired), chopped
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp paprika
Juice of ½ lime
1/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese
½ tsp Kosher salt
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
Vegetable oil

For serving:
Burger buns
Homemade guacamole
Chipotle Ranch dressing
Extra cheddar cheese (melt on the burgers before removing from them the grill)


1. Heat the grill to medium-high heat.

2. Add the chicken to a large bowl and toss in the onion, cilantro, garlic, jalapeño, cumin, paprika, lime juice, cheddar, salt and pepper. With a fork, lightly stir the ingredients into the chicken until the mixture is well-blended. Shape the chicken mixture into four ½-inch patties.

3. Grill the patties for 5 to 6 minutes per side. Allow to rest for a couple minutes before serving. Top the buns with guacamole and the burger with desired toppings.

*Recipe adapted from Smells like home.

{our home} laundry in style.

It may seem silly, but one of the first areas of our home that I wanted to tackle was the laundry room. The space is small, but I still appreciate having a dedicated laundry space especially since our condo had shared laundry in the basement, having our own washer and dryer priceless.

Overall, I wanted the room to have more storage, function better and not be an eye sore if the door was left open.

Here is what the space looked like shortly after moving in.

It is hard to see but the builder did put up a wire shelf, which I loathed.

After doing some measuring I realized an ikea desktop would fit perfectly on top of the washer and dryer to prevent cloths from falling behind the machines and add a great area for folding.

So off to ikea I went, it fit like it was cut for the space!  What are the chance?!

Something important to note, the top of slides forward quickly and easily if we ever needed to access the water shut off in case of an emergency.

Just by adding the top, I felt like the room visually looked so much better and functioned better, but wasn't there yet.

However, storage was still an issue that needed to be addressed. I knew I wanted a cabinet, hanging bar to dry clothes and a shelf above the cabinet to add baskets. The cabinet would not only hold laundry supplies but also cleaning supplies for the third floor.

We purchased an unfinished cabinet, molding, hanging bar and brackets from lowes. We went with an unfinished cabinet because it was 1/3 of the price of the white trifoil cabinets lowes sells and a solid wood cabinet would give us a more consistent finish once everything was painted.

The downside of an unfinished cabinet is a lot of priming, painting and sanding. But it was worth the effort.

Once the marathon of painted was complete hardware was added and some functional accessories to keep things organized and tidy.

The bare wall needs some art work, I am thinking something laundry room appropriate like this.

{source: lettered & lined}

At this point the space is 90% complete. It needs art, paint on the walls and a new light fixture.

Of course, Matt reminded me I should have painted before we hung the cabinets to make life easier, oh well, you live and learn. BM Revere Pewter would add some nice contrast to the cabinet and counter.

For the light fixture, I have settled on this beauty. I am smitten.

{source: shades of light}
I hope to get the room painted, light purchased and installed in the new month or so.

Friday, January 17, 2014

{a week in review} around the web.

We are 2 weeks into the new year and for once in my life I have been sticking with my "resolutions" here. As part of being more balanced in life, I have implemented a new cleaning routine. I tackle 1-2 things a day, and repeat things like vacuum every three days. I am only a week in but it already as made things more manageable and prevents me from feeling overwhelmed with everything that needed to get done. I use the wunderlist app on my iphone to remind me of what I need to do daily.

Here are a few of my favorite items I have come across this week on the web:
Have a great weekend!