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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Maple BBQ Sloppy Joes

My dinner table has been an all out war zone the past several weeks. My children have been on a hunger strike and it's driven me insane! One is having "issues' with his orthodontic appliances in his mouth (expander/braces) as well as reflux, the other is being a copycat. There's been a lot of gagging, spitting, and refusal to eat. There's been bargaining, tears, anger, and kids sent to bed without dinner. It's hard for a mama who loves to cook and finds it therapeutic. Anyhow, we're seeing some progress and slowly starting to eat again around here. One meal that has passed the test is one I stumbled upon while flipping through the channels one afternoon. Rachel Ray was doing a fresh take on sloppy joes and I knew I had to try it. Her recipe is great as is. Since my youngest thinks he doesn't like onions or peppers, I just buzzed them up in the food processor before tossing them into the meat and they went totally unnoticed. In fact, he said to me, "Mom, last time you made these you put vegetables in it and I didn't like it but this time you didn't put them in and I love it." Sure thing, buddy...just keep on thinking that. Now I'm wondering what else I can sneak in there. Chopped spinach? Sweet potatoes?
Anyhow, here's her recipe. They're great on buttered buns, but I ate mine atop mixed greens since I'm trying to be "good." Today I ate the leftovers for lunch scooped up with some pita chips. And yes, I used ground turkey breast.

Sloppy Maple-BBQ Turkey Joes

1 tablespoon EVOO - Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 1/2 pounds of ground turkey or ground lean turkey breast
1 tablespoon poultry seasoning, scant plamful
Salt and pepper
1 small red bell pepper, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 cup tomato sauce
1/4 cup dark amber pure maple syrup
About 3 tablespoons soy sauce
About 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
About 2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 rounded tablespoon Dijon mustard
8 soft burger rolls, split
Shredded cheddar or pepper jack cheese
Chopped scallions, for topping
Chopped pickles, for topping
Yields: Makes 8 Sloppy Sammies


In a large skillet, heat the EVOO, 1 turn of the pan, over medium-high heat. Add turkey and seasoning with poultry seasoning, salt and pepper. Cook until browned, then stir in the bell pepper, onion and garlic and cook until the vegetables are tender, 5 to 6 minutes. In a bowl, stir together the tomato sauce, maple syrup, soy sauce, vinegar, brown sugar and mustard. If the sauce gets too tight, loosen it up with a splash of water or chicken stock. Pour the sauce over the meat and simmer over medium-low heat for a few minutes to combine the flavors. Serve the sloppy turkey on rolls with toppings.


Scott and Sara said...

Sorry to hear about the food wars! For a while now, Faith kicks up a fuss unless she is served "noodles" (anything pasta) for dinner. So, we've had a few battles happening over here. We' made some progress, but it's hit or miss most nights. Am going to try this one, though!

Jackie said...

I love the idea of blending up the veges before adding them to the recipe. I will have to try this one with my kids. They won't touch it if they see the veges.