turkey mint burgers

spring break is over… in Saskatchewan we call it Easter break due to the fact it rarely feels like spring has sprung…  one day it will be sunny and the next you are right back in a snow storm…

every year I feel terrible for the geese and ducks that are the overachievers…  the go getters and the eager beavers…  they are shivering on half frozen sloughs with no idea what the next day holds…  they were told, most likely around a camp fire one evening while roasting marshmallows for smores, that if they got here before everyone else, they’d have first crack at breeding with the best of the best and have first dibs on realty…  but when they arrive they find it’s too cold to even dream of anything other than snuggling and there is an over abundance of sloughs and fields…

as humans we are encouraged to be early risers, to go the extra mile and be a spark plug…  well, if I were a bird I would definitely be lackadaisical, most likely procrastinate and be borderline unindustrious… I’d let Phil and Susan go scout things out in Canada and I’d take a few more days to soak up the sun in Arizona…

sure… by the time I arrive in Canada, snappy Susan has scooped up the best mating partner and her goslings will be rock stars while I’m left with an awkward ‘get to know you’ with Henry who has one leg shorter than the other, a lazy eye and a tongue that hangs out of his beak at all times…  but this is a cost I am prepared to live with…

even if it means my offspring might never even be strong enough to make it past Montana in the fall and I have to leave them there with Henry’s relatives while I head back to my trailer park and pickle ball court in Arizona…  of course I would think of them every day, as I am eating grass from someones lawn and soaking up the rays on a man made pond at the golf course…

I’m pretty sure Henry had said something to me about geese mating for life but I couldn’t hear him correctly seeings how his tongue muffles his speech…  so I had said a teary goodbye in Montana and thanked him for raising our 7 wonderful children but I had to check on our property in Arizona…

I think he knew it was over… the glazed look in his eyes told me he did… but he also has seasonal allergies and autumn is a time they generally flair up…

…  where was I?  oh yes, spring break is over…

(I get sidetracked easily…  kids would love me as a teacher)

I am reminded every time I spend over a week with my children why schools and teachers are such a great idea…  when Monday morning hit and I get to start making lunches again and sending the kids off to school, something comes alive in me…

I feel like singing… or humming at least… the house is quiet… there is a peaceful stillness that comes over me…

with joy and contentment, I go about the cleaning, laundry, bookwork and cooking…  I start thinking of recipes for the farmers for seeding…  the farmer and I have a nice, quiet lunch with no one asking us to watch them spin a spinner…

I am able to plan and cook exciting suppers again… because I am alone in my kitchen and this is happiness to me…

please, don’t misunderstand me… I love my children… I really do… but I also love teachers…

so, thank you teachers… from the bottom of my heart!

turkey mint burgers



  • 1 1/2 cups grated zucchini
  • 2 lbs lean ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh mint
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley (or 2 tbsp dried parsley)
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground chili powder
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper


  • mixed greens and romaine lettuce
  • cucumber
  • tomatoes
  • crumbled feta cheese
  • chopped fresh mint
  • lemon zest
  • lemon juice


  • in a large bowl, combine burger ingredients and with hands mix well
  • using a 1/2 cup measurer, make patties and place on parchment lined cookie sheet
  • cover with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator to chill
  • meanwhile, make individual salads
  • squeeze lemon juice over them as the dressing
  • have oven set to 375 degrees
  • in a skillet, on med/high heat, pour olive oil and brown the turkey burgers
  • once browned place in a dish and put in oven for 10-15 minutes or until burgers are cooked through
  • place burgers on top of the salad to eat

Opa in the Field

yay…  a few hours of combining took place!  on the menu tonight was Opa pitas with pork souvlaki, greek salad and nectarine upside down cake with whipped cream…

when we go to the mall, my favourite food court go to is Opa…  and did you know that you are able to purchase their pita bread (which is heaven) and their tzatziki sauce…  so I was so excited to take the food court to the field tonight!

all that is required is to brush this beautiful bread with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and brown on both sides in a pan…

bbq the pork souvlaki and then assemble!  I used two of their tzatziki sauces for 16 pitas and it was lots…  wrap them in tin foil and then you don’t even have dishes…

(I’m a little too excited about this meal)

at Opa they give you wonderful fries and greek salad to go with your pita…  I didn’t get around to the fries… which I do regret…  but the greek salad with the farmers grandma’s salad dressing is the perfect side for your pita…

grandma swan's greek salad dressing


  • 1/2 cup Crisco oil
  • 4 tsp lemon juice
  • 4 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp dry mustard
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tbsp parsley
  • 2 tbsp minced red onions
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic clove
  • 2 tbsp minced red pepper


  • in a shaker, mix ingredients and shake until completely combined
  • pour over red, yellow and orange peppers, red onion, feta cheese, romaine lettuce and tomatoes

and to wash it all down…  cake…

I did this cake last harvest, but changed the recipe slightly today…  and was happier with the result…

fruit and cake like each other…  almost as much as butter and sugar… 

my daughter absolutely loved making this cake with me and told me it is going to be her birthday cake request this year!

nectarine upside down cornmeal cake

  • Servings: 2 - 9 inch cakes or 16 pieces
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Nectarine Upside Down Cake with Whipped Cream


For Cake:

– 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

– 1 cup packed brown sugar

– 4 cups nectarines, cut into slices (around 6 nectarines)

– 3 cups all purpose flour

– 1 cup cornmeal

– 3 tsp baking powder

– 1 tsp baking soda

– 1 tsp kosher salt

– 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature

– 1 cup melted coconut oil

– 1 1/4 cup sugar

– 4 large eggs, room temperature

– 2 tsp vanilla extract

– 1 cup plain Greek yogurt

For Whipped Cream:

– 500 mL whipping cream

– 1 pkg Whip It


– preheat oven to 325 degrees

– place 1/4 cup butter into a 9 inch round cake pan 2 inches deep (this recipe is for two of these pans)

– melt in oven, remove and sprinkle brown sugar evenly over the butter

– arrange fruit over the brown sugar mixture in pan

– in a medium bowl, mix flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and salt

– beat butter and oil with sugar and then beat in eggs one at a time

– add yogurt and combine

– beat in vanilla and then dry ingredients

– with a spatula, spread the cake mixture over the two cake pans with the nectarines in them

– bake until cake is dark golden brown and toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean… around  1 hour

– let cool in pan on wire rack for 15 minutes

– run an knife around the edge and invert cake onto serving plate

– cut and scoop into containers

– for Whipped Cream, chill beater and bowl in freezer if possible

– pour whipping cream in bowl and the package of Whip It and beat on med/high until it forms soft peaks

– put a large dollop on room temperature dessert in container

happy harvest everyone…  let’s hope for sunny days…