French Onion Burger

I pulled this recipe out of a Rachael Ray magazine a long time ago and thought it looked just amazing.  Then I put it in the pile with the others and forgot about it.  When I was spring cleaning the cabinet I came across this and had to make it right away!

We loved this burger.  It is very flavorful, salty, gooey...it's just great.  It's kind of a "Friday night" kind of meal, a little rough on the calorie count but I'll make it again and again.  I made just a couple changes.  I recommend not salting the onions until it's all finished because the beef consomme is quite salty.

French Onion Burger
adapted from Rachael Ray

2 Tb. butter
4 onions, thinly sliced
1 bay leaf
pinch of thyme
1 can beef consomme
1 1/2 c. sour cream

2 lbs. ground beef
2-3 Tb. worcestershire sauce
salt & pepper
1/4 c. fresh parsley, chopped
1/4 c. grated onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
swiss cheese for topping
kettle chips for topping
fresh bakery buns

To make French Onion topping: Heat butter in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add onions and bay leaf, pepper and thyme. Cook until deep caramel and soft, about 35 minutes.  Lower the heat if the onions are browning to quickly.  Pour in the beef consomme and scrape the bottom of the pan, cook until the liquid is almost all absorved.  Remove from heat and discard the bay leaf, let the onions cool.  Stir in the sour cream and set aside.

To make the burgers: Heat the grill.  In a large bowl combine beef, worcestershire, salt, pepper, parsley, onion and garlic.  Combine all ingredients and form into 6 patties.  Cook the burgers until almost done to your preference, top with swiss cheese.  Remove from grill when the cheese is melted.  Place the burgers on a bun and top with a generous amount of onion mixture and a handfull of chips.  Serve immediately.

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Mango Quinoa Salad

My entire family loves this salad and I've adapted it a few times, finally coming up with the perfect recipe for us and perfectly acccomodates my Weight Watchers points allotment.  It isn't over-dressed just a small bit of olive oil and red wine vinegar.  The best part is this is naturally allergen-friendly.  You could easily adapt the veggies and fruit for what you have.  I think fresh pineapple or peaches would be good.  I've used red or green onions and many colors of bell pepper based on what I had.
Try this salad with meat off the grill this summer for an oven-free meal.  (We had some wild-caught Alaskan salmon...yum!)

Mango Quinoa Salad
recipe inspired from Our Best Bites

2 c. cooked quinoa (any color)
2 small mangoes, or 1 large, diced small
1 c. cucumber, diced (I peel conventional cucumbers, but not English cucumbers)
1/4 c. red or green onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped (any color)
1/2 c. fresh cilantro, chopped
3 Tb. red wine vinegar
2 Tb. olive oil
3 Tb. fresh lime juice
salt & pepper to taste
dash of sugar or honey

Cook the quinoa and let cool.  In a large bowl mix together quinoa, mango, cucumber, onion, bell pepper and cilantro.  To make the dressing mix together vinegar, oil, lime juice, salt & pepper and sweetener.  Pour the dressing over the salad and serve immediately or refrigerate until you're ready to eat.

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