When I first thought about making lighter lobster rolls in rice paper wrappers, I didn't dare tell anyone. Here in New England, people take lobster rolls seriously. Lobster rolls are served in lightly toasted and buttered hot dog buns. Period. No exceptions. So, these lemon-basil shrimp (or lobster) salad rolls break all the rules. Lemon and basil? Never. Shrimp instead of lobster? Simply not done. Skip the hot dog bun? Don't even think about it. That's the official position, but for me, these salad rolls hit all the high notes. I always have shrimp in my freezer, so that's what I use, but if you're lucky enough to have some leftover steamed lobster, swap that for the shrimp. You can wrap the rolls in lettuce leaves instead of the rice paper, to keep them really light. Just don't call them lobster rolls if you're in my neighborhood; no one will believe you.
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Truth be told, I love a good hamburger with drippy cheese, oozing and dribbling down my chin. Turkey burgers don't ooze, and that's something I've learned to accept when I opt for healthy eating. However, this chipotle ketchup can drip and dribble with the best. The smoky chipotle flavor here is quite mild, as the recipe calls for the adobo sauce but not the actual chile peppers. If you like your sauces hot, add a bit of chopped chipotle chile (with or without seeds) right into the ketchup mixture. Greek yogurt keeps the burgers moist, so they can cook through without drying out. It's the same trick I use when I make turkey meatballs, and it works every time. You can make the ketchup ahead, even a couple of weeks ahead, and store it in the refrigerator.
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In a recent pantry clean-out, I unearthed a frozen "emergency" turkey breast I'd bought last November, in case I couldn't find a fresh turkey breast for Thanksgiving dinner. Six months later, I decided to defrost it and give it a go in the slow cooker. The goal: moist, flavorful turkey to slice and use for sandwiches and salads. The result? Spectacular success, and it couldn't be easier. In fact, the hardest thing about this recipe will be finding a boneless turkey breast. The solution: buy a bone-in turkey breast and ask the butcher to break it down for you. Save the bones and wings and make a soup stock (also in the slow cooker), and use the two breast halves in this recipe. I like this Greek seasoning from The Spice House; you can substitute with your favorite brand, or a mix of kosher salt, fresh black pepper, dried lemon peel and dried oregano. Use the cooked turkey in dozens of ways -- stuffed into sandwiches, chopped in salads, or shredded and tossed with pasta and vegetables.
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Until I moved to Rhode Island, I'd never heard of coffee syrup. (It's like Hershey's chocolate syrup, except made from coffee. If that helps.) The state drink, coffee milk, combines coffee syrup with, well, milk, and the favorite iced treat, a coffee cabinet, is a milkshake made with coffee ice cream and coffee syrup. Sweet, sweet, sweet. When I met up with my friend Jen of Savor the Thyme at Dave's Coffee, in the opposite end of the state, I bought a bottle of their all-natural coffee syrup, and couldn't resist experimenting with some savory recipes. I packed this slow cooker coffee-chipotle pulled chicken into a piece of oat-bran lavash bread with some lettuce and this smoky spicy cole slaw. That's a lot of Rhode Island goodness rolled up into one great sandwich. Not to worry: you can make this in your own kitchen even if you don't have our coffee syrup. Or you can come to my kitchen and I'll make it for you.
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