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beef and potato picadillo tacos with tomatillo salsa

picadillo tacos with tomatillo and avocado salsa | heatherbursch | shemadeitshemight.com #tacos #greensauce #tomatillosalsa #avocados #shemadeit #cilantro #recipes #glutenfree

This is my kind of food. A recipe that is made to take you through the week in almost any form. I mean I ALWAYS start with a taco, but it inevitably ends up on my eggs, or on top of some greens or an avocado, or another version of a taco with eggs, or by itself for a quick snack. Smack your lips right now. Yum.

And that all just depends if it lasts beyond our dinner because it’s tricky when five people love something. I can’t imagine a big enough batch for five sets of leftovers but I probably should because everyone here would just be happy to have their own stash for the week with signs that say don’t touch. It’s precious.

picadillo tacos with tomatillo and avocado salsa | heatherbursch | shemadeitshemight.com #tacos #greensauce #tomatillosalsa #avocados #shemadeit #cilantro #recipes #glutenfree

It’s also a lesson in improving an average pound of grass-fed ground beef with a basic white potato. I love both of these things. I just do. My body craves red meat once in awhile, and I’m not at the point in the spring where my body has full on given up the need for cozy food like potatoes. Basically, I’m still cold.

While I love both of these ingredients mentioned above, it’s the green sauce I’m most in love with and this my friends WILL take me/you the rest of the way into spring.

picadillo tacos with tomatillo and avocado salsa | heatherbursch | shemadeitshemight.com #tacos #greensauce #tomatillosalsa #avocados #shemadeit #cilantro #recipes #glutenfree

You’ve seen my Rick Bayless love over the years, and he’s taught and retaught me all the ways to roast up things like poblanos and tomatillos, with ingredients like garlic, cilantro and maybe a squeeze of lime. Blend and call it a salsa, sauce or spring. You choose. It’s time.

picadillo tacos with tomatillo and avocado salsa | heatherbursch | shemadeitshemight.com #tacos #greensauce #tomatillosalsa #avocados #shemadeit #cilantro #recipes #glutenfree

Here you go, our current family favorite stuffing for your taco needs – breakfast, lunch or dinner.

picadillo tacos with tomatillo and avocado salsa | heatherbursch | shemadeitshemight.com #tacos #greensauce #tomatillosalsa #avocados #shemadeit #cilantro #recipes #glutenfree

Speaking of tacos, I’ve made these tortillas in the picture above and below three times with Otto’s Naturals 100% Natural Cassava Flour (affiliate link). I was trying to replicate a thin grain-free yuca root tortilla like the ones we had at PICNIK in Austin. I’m still working on a thinner version, but these are solid, friends. And easy to whip up!

picadillo tacos with tomatillo and avocado salsa | heatherbursch | shemadeitshemight.com #tacos #greensauce #tomatillosalsa #avocados #shemadeit #cilantro #recipes #glutenfree

They are thicker and more like the flour tortilla texture, which consequently does make them filling. (Or maybe that’s the potatoes?) But anyways, if you are looking for a homemade alternative, I have had better luck with these than with trying to make fresh corn tortillas since I cannot find fresh masa around this city, yet.

Here’s the taco filling, tortilla options up to you.

Beef and Potato Picadillo Tacos with Tomatillo Salsa
Makes: Makes 12-15 tacos
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1½ pounds white potatoes peeled and small diced
  • 1 small yellow onion chopped
  • 2 tablespoons clarified butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
Salsa Ingredients
  • 8 tomatillos husked, rinsed and halved
  • 8 cloves of garlic unpeeled
  • 1 jalapeno whole
  • ½-1 teaspoon salt & pepper
  • ½ bunch of cilantro
  • ½ avocado
  1. Preheat oven to broil. On a cookie sheet lay halved tomatillos open side down, unpeeled garlic cloves, and jalapeño. Broil for 10-15 minutes total, turning garlic and jalapeño every 3-4 minutes as skins blacken on all sides.
  2. If garlic is browned or blackened on all sides, remove from oven and return the tomatillos and pepper until there are black spots and vegetables are fully softened. Peel the garlic and let vegetables cool while you continue with the meat and potatoes.
  3. In a saute pan, cook ground beef and a light sprinkle of salt and pepper until browned and crumbled into small bite-sized pieces. Set aside.
  4. In a large metal saute pan, heat 1 tablespoon of clarified butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add potatoes, onions and another light sprinkle of salt and pepper in a single layer and saute. Do not disturb for about 5 minutes. If it seems too hot, turn it down but try not to stir so the potatoes can create the browned coating of hash-browned potatoes.
  5. After 5 minutes, with a sharp-edged spatula, scrape the potatoes thoroughly and continue to saute. Add more clarified butter if the pan seems dry. Cook potatoes and onions, stirring occasionally for 10-15 minutes more until potatoes are just tender but not starting to mush. Do not over stir.
  6. To finish salsa, scrape all vegetables and juices with peeled garlic into a blender. Add the cilantro leaves and ½ teaspoon of salt and a few pinches of pepper and blend until pureed.Taste and add more seasoning, and a squeeze of lime if you like. Remove ¾ cup of salsa from the blender jar and set aside for later. Add ½ avocado to the blender jar and puree for final salsa topping. Set aside.
  7. When potatoes are just done, stir in ground beef and ¾ cup reserved salsa. Salt and pepper to taste as you desire.
  8. To eat: fill tortillas with beef and potato filling, top with avocado salsa.
Other optional toppings: cilantro, avocado slices, and limes.
Makes 12 - 15 tacos

picadillo tacos with tomatillo and avocado salsa | heatherbursch | shemadeitshemight.com #tacos #greensauce #tomatillosalsa #avocados #shemadeit #cilantro #recipes #glutenfree



how to make homemade mayo in less than 30 seconds

A few years ago I was looking for a mayonnaise without soy, sugar and other strange ingredients for shelf life. I knew that it should be mostly eggs and oil but nowhere was this to be found at the time. I began making my own here and there. The only time it didn’t work was when I used extra-virgin olive oil. Lesson #1: You need light tasting oils, or the strong flavor will overpower and taste bitter. 

A couple of summers ago I shared my recipe on Instagram, and my good friend Jen had zero success with it. This discrepancy drove me nuts, so I repeated what I had communicated, and it worked for me. Wait, what? You know this version of cooking crazy, right? How does it work them and not me, or this time and not that?

One weekend at the cabin I made it in Jen’s food processor, at least three times with ZERO success. I realized that the food processor Jen was using had too big of a bowl for the blades to reach the ingredients. Lesson #2: the blades have to touch all ingredients since the key to making homemade mayo is to slowly add the oil so the liquids can emulsify and thicken properly.

And then last fall I re-discovered the immersion blender. While I don’t like to acquire tools and additional kitchen tools, and previously gave one of these away as part of my small kitchen survival strategy, I am so glad I now stow this Smart Stick (affiliate link).

While you can whisk mayo in a bowl or blend in a food processor by adding oil drop by drop, immersion blenders are the way to go.

And you know how I feel about homemade activities, right? Satisfied, smart, accomplished and set up for success. While using the right oil is essential every time, this method gets dumped together all at once and has worked every time.

Here’s Ev’s latest favorite way to help me in the kitchen.

This one’s for you, Jen. But I won’t rest until you’ve had success. 😉

Homemade Mayo in 30 seconds
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of sunflower oil (I also use light olive oil or avocado oil)
  • ½ lemon squeezed
  • 1-2 garlic cloves crushed
  • salt to taste
  1. Crack an egg into your immersion blender cup or tall mason jar.
  2. Next, pour oil and the juice of a ½ lemon squeezed and strained.
  3. Crush garlic clove into the mixture.
  4. Using an immersion bender hold it to the bottom of the oil and blend gently moving it slightly up and down.
  5. Once the liquids start to emulsify, slightly tip blender stick to let oil from the top move under the blades to be incorporated.
  6. After about 30 seconds total, the mayonnaise should be ready and thick. Turn off blender stick and gently remove.
  7. Add salt, about ¼-1/2 teaspoon to taste, stir and store in a jar with a lid for up to about five days in your refrigerator.

Here are a few of our favorite additions:

  • Red Pepper Mayonnaise – Once emulsified, I pushed a roasted red pepper to the bottom of the blender and pureed the pepper into the mayo.
  • Herbed Mayonnaise – Try adding a tablespoon of chopped herbs at the end.
  • Chipotle or Sriracha Mayonnaise – add a teaspoon of adobo sauce, chipotle powder, sriracha or any spicy sauce you like for a dip or sandwich spread. Taste to determine the amount of spice!

Why mayo? It uses whole food ingredients, and we love deviled eggs, this salad, this dressing for any impromptu salad, chicken or tuna with crackers, greens or bread for lunch, a swipe on sandwiches and burger buns, and more to come here or at @heatherbursch.

Let us know how it goes!

~Heather (& Ev)


queso fundido with roasted poblanos and chorizo verde

Trying to fit in a cooking lesson, a photo shoot and a blog post with a senior in high school is like cooking from scratch without making a mess. Impossible. I did get this boy in the kitchen since the crazy-cake day and cooking lesson #1, just not on video or in a pic until now.

queso fundido with roasted poblano and chorizo verde | Melty warm cheese dip with chips, what more could you want? The perfect party food! #shemadeit #hemadeit #queso #chorizoverde #Mexicanfood #appetizers #cheese #chipsanddip #tortillachips #chipsandsalsa #glutenfree | shemadeitshemight.com

The first few times Cole and I tried recipes for an ATX Cucina inspired queso was for post-game snacks last fall. His high school team was on fire and seemed headed for the playoffs. But the Hawks lost by one point, one game before they made it to the state tournament.

queso fundido with roasted poblano and chorizo verde | Melty warm cheese dip with chips, what more could you want? The perfect party food! #shemadeit #hemadeit #queso #chorizoverde #Mexicanfood #appetizers #cheese #chipsanddip #tortillachips #chipsandsalsa #glutenfree | shemadeitshemight.com

Our latest melting cheese experiment happened this month when, Cole, the only true Viking’s fan in the house, watched the Vike’s lose one game away from the Super Bowl.

queso fundido with roasted poblano and chorizo verde | Melty warm cheese dip with chips, what more could you want? The perfect party food! #shemadeit #hemadeit #queso #chorizoverde #Mexicanfood #appetizers #cheese #chipsanddip #tortillachips #chipsandsalsa #glutenfree | shemadeitshemight.com

But sports and loss have been something this kid knows. He was often on the team that came oh-so-close but not quite.

I’m not a sports fan, but I grew up in a household full of them and with the movie Hoosiers on repeat. I love a great play or an unexpected win; I just could never commit to fan status with sports.

That is until I saw Cole play anything.

I remember the hill I was sitting on when that ball went high and long for his first home run. And that year when his football coach played him as the quarterback, and he ran that ball himself for a couple of touchdowns when the passing game didn’t come together for those 12-year-olds. The screams!!

But for three straight years, Cole’s football team lost every single game. And the first time his baseball coach put him in as the pitcher they were down by a few runs already. I was begging heaven for a strike, just 1, for the love of all things, please. He walked the first 5-6 batters, but he did not give up. I asked him later, what he was thinking and how did he do that? He said, “What choice did I have, Mom, but to keep going?” I could think of a few options.

First tries and repeat losses. Home runs and touchdowns. I can’t name it all and know what each thing meant, but somehow it all does add up to a childhood of life lessons and experiences that grew him and go with him. I feel a good weight. While I’m not going to tie this to the meaning of queso, I will take all these memories and celebrate how they built courage and created resilience.

And about that queso. If you love cheese, this one is for you.

queso fundido with roasted poblano and chorizo verde | Melty warm cheese dip with chips, what more could you want? The perfect party food! #shemadeit #hemadeit #queso #chorizoverde #Mexicanfood #appetizers #cheese #chipsanddip #tortillachips #chipsandsalsa #glutenfree | shemadeitshemight.comqueso fundido with roasted poblano and chorizo verde | Melty warm cheese dip with chips, what more could you want? The perfect party food! #shemadeit #hemadeit #queso #chorizoverde #Mexicanfood #appetizers #cheese #chipsanddip #tortillachips #chipsandsalsa #glutenfree | shemadeitshemight.comqueso fundido with roasted poblano and chorizo verde | Melty warm cheese dip with chips, what more could you want? The perfect party food! #shemadeit #hemadeit #queso #chorizoverde #Mexicanfood #appetizers #cheese #chipsanddip #tortillachips #chipsandsalsa #glutenfree | shemadeitshemight.comqueso fundido with roasted poblano and chorizo verde | Melty warm cheese dip with chips, what more could you want? The perfect party food! #shemadeit #hemadeit #queso #chorizoverde #Mexicanfood #appetizers #cheese #chipsanddip #tortillachips #chipsandsalsa #glutenfree | shemadeitshemight.com

The good news is you can’t lose with queso unless you leave it in the oven for too long or forget to eat it right away. For a more blended gooey mixture, increase your melting cheese and decrease the crumbling cheese in the recipe below. Play with what your favorite cheese combinations, we liked everything we tried. Win!

Queso Fundido with Poblanos and Chorizo Verde
Makes: 6-8
  • ½ pound of green chorizo, recipe below. Store-bought fresh chorizo not cured works as well.
  • 1-2 teaspoons of olive oil
  • 1 poblano pepper
  • ¼ cup chopped onion
  • ¾ pound Mexican melting cheese like quesadilla or Oaxaca, shredded or cut into small pieces
  • ¼ pound Mexican melting cheese like Chihuahua cheese which is more like a cheddar, shredded
  • ¼ pound fresh cheese like queso fresco or an aged crumbly cheese like cotija, crumbled
Substitute 2½ pounds of any cheese combination you like making sure you have a good melting cheese as the base.
Optional: jalapeno and cilantro slices to top
Serve with tortilla chips
  1. Preheat oven to broil.
  2. Roast 1 poblano pepper for 1-2 minutes a side under the broiler, about 6 inches from the top. Keep turning until all sides are blackened. Remove roasted pepper and put into a paper bag rolled down or a bowl covered with a towel for 15 minutes to create a steamy environment.
  3. Turn oven to 400°.
  4. To remove blackened pepper skin, run under cold water while you rub off the skin and remove inside seeds and stem.
  5. Cut roasted pepper into strips and dice into small pieces.
  6. Heat olive oil in a cast iron or oven proof pan over medium-high heat and saute onion for 5 minutes until starting to soften. Add poblano pieces and saute for 2 minutes or so.
  7. Next, add ½ of the recipe for green chorizo or ½ pound of fresh chorizo to the pan and sauté until lightly brown and starting to crisp.
  8. When meat is ready, salt and pepper to taste keeping in mind the cheese will be salty as well.
  9. Add all 3 kinds of cheese on medium heat, stirring for about 1 minute to melt and combine all the ingredients.
  10. Put skillet into the oven until cheese is bubbling and melted, 5-7 minutes should be just right depending on your cheese selection.
  11. Top queso with fresh jalapenos and cilantro if you like. Serve immediately with chips.

The first time we made the recipe above we used fresh store bought chorizo, and it was good. I knew the dish I had in Austin was with Chorizo Verde and I wanted a similar green chile and cilantro flavor with the salty cheeses. This chorizo recipe makes double and would be great with scrambled eggs, hash, or breakfast tacos!

Chorizo Verde | Melty warm cheese dip with chips, what more could you want? The perfect party food! #shemadeit #hemadeit #queso #chorizoverde #Mexicanfood #appetizers #cheese #chipsanddip #tortillachips #chipsandsalsa #glutenfree | shemadeitshemight.com

Chorizo Verde
Makes: 1 pound of chorizo
  • 1 pound ground turkey or pork. I use ½ white and ½ dark organic turkey. Ground pork is traditional.
  • 1 roasted poblano, skin and seeds removed, diced (See roasting instructions above in queso recipe.)
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 5 garlic cloves crushed
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  1. In the bowl of a food processor combine roasted poblano pieces, black pepper, ground coriander, cumin, oregano, salt, and garlic until finely chopped and mixed. Add apple cider vinegar and cilantro, puree until combined.
  2. Place your meat into a large bowl and add your chile spice mixture. Using two forks gently combine your meat and spices.
  3. Divide meat into two parts, saving one portion to freeze or refrigerate and use later.

queso fundido with roasted poblano and chorizo verde | Melty warm cheese dip with chips, what more could you want? The perfect party food! #shemadeit #hemadeit #queso #chorizoverde #Mexicanfood #appetizers #cheese #chipsanddip #tortillachips #chipsandsalsa #glutenfree | shemadeitshemight.com

Stay tuned for Cooking Lesson #3 and eggs, our entire family and a few friends are getting in on this lesson. 😘

~Heather (& Cole)


Korean Beef Bowl

I’m not sure what came first, the kimchi or the beef, but we’ve spent a couple of winters with this one.

Korean Beef Bowl | bowls of beef, spinach, rice or veggies, kimchi, peanuts, cilantro and an over easy egg. #shemadeit #Koreanbeef #healthyfood #instantpot #foodie #glutenfree #foodblogger #reacipe #protein #spinach #grainbowl #putaneggonit #winterfood #onthetable #foodgawker #dinnertime #mealprep #whatsfordinner #whole30 #loveyourlunch #feedfeed #f52grams #realfood #buzzfeedfood @thefeedfeed #instafood #eater #tacos #beefbowl | shemadeitshemight.com

When I have kimchi in my fridge, I want this beef bowl. When I make this beef, I wish for kimchi. And sometimes these two things come together at the same time, and I actually snap a picture before we eat it!

This recipe here is my meal prepping evolution wrapped up in a bowl. It goes like this, make the parts, store them in the fridge, and for every time someone asks what they can eat whether it’s breakfast, lunch, or dinner I can say, something with the delicious beef. Done.

Here’s my thing about meal prepping, I cannot make it all on Sunday, divide into dishes, and cruise through my week like I love it. And it’s not because I haven’t tried it, or that I don’t like the way it feels. I have, and I do! I’d suggest to anyone that eats, to give meal prepping this way a try at least once in their life. You’ll learn fast what you like and what works for you, and what doesn’t. When you set yourself up for the week, whatever it looks like, you’ll reap the benefits and learn something about YOUR best ways to feed yourself. 

Why does this prepping this beef bowl work for us? We can prep the parts and make it work in every situation and for every person who lives here. 

Korean Beef Bowl | bowls of beef, spinach, rice or veggies, kimchi, peanuts, cilantro and an over easy egg. #shemadeit #Koreanbeef #healthyfood #instantpot #foodie #glutenfree #foodblogger #reacipe #protein #spinach #grainbowl #putaneggonit #winterfood #onthetable #foodgawker #dinnertime #mealprep #whatsfordinner #whole30 #loveyourlunch #feedfeed #f52grams #realfood #buzzfeedfood @thefeedfeed #instafood #eater #tacos #beefbowl | shemadeitshemight.com

If Cole needs a second lunch or after school snack, he might just eat a couple of tacos.

Korean Beef Bowl | bowls of beef, spinach, rice or veggies, kimchi, peanuts, cilantro and an over easy egg. #shemadeit #Koreanbeef #healthyfood #instantpot #foodie #glutenfree #foodblogger #reacipe #protein #spinach #grainbowl #putaneggonit #winterfood #onthetable #foodgawker #dinnertime #mealprep #whatsfordinner #whole30 #loveyourlunch #feedfeed #f52grams #realfood #buzzfeedfood @thefeedfeed #instafood #eater #tacos #beefbowl | shemadeitshemight.com

Did Ella dance through dinner time? Then she can make a bowl and put an egg on top. When all the parts are available, anything is possible. Spice it up, cool it down, make a salad, put it in a corn tortilla or create a bowl.

Korean Beef Bowl | bowls of beef, spinach, rice or veggies, kimchi, peanuts, cilantro and an over easy egg. #shemadeit #Koreanbeef #healthyfood #instantpot #foodie #glutenfree #foodblogger #reacipe #protein #spinach #grainbowl #putaneggonit #winterfood #onthetable #foodgawker #dinnertime #mealprep #whatsfordinner #whole30 #loveyourlunch #feedfeed #f52grams #realfood #buzzfeedfood @thefeedfeed #instafood #eater #tacos #beefbowl | shemadeitshemight.com

Here’s our Korean Beef Meal prep list:

  • Korean Shredded Beef – recipe below 
  • Rice, quinoa, or cauliflower rice 
  • Spinach or kale greens washed and ready 
  • Eggs – fried or hard boiled 
  • Jalapenos or Thai Chilies 
  • Kimchi 
  • Peanuts 
  • Avocado slices
  • Cilantro 
  • Hot sauce or spicy vinegar
  • Optional: shredded cold carrots, strips of daikon radish, edamame beans shelled, sliced scallions, etc.

Meals we can make with our prepped parts:

  • Tacos with beef and kimchi
  • Breakfast tacos with eggs, beef, and kimchi
  • Bowls with all or a few parts
  • Salad with all or a few parts
  • Hash- add beef to potatoes or a root vegetable hash, kimchi, and an egg on top
  • Sandwich – shredded beef and kimchi on toasted bread or bun with spicy mayo and hot sauce

Here’s the recipe using an instant pot!

Instant Pot Korean Shredded Beef
Makes: 8-12
  • 1 lime zested and squeezed
  • 3 inches of ginger peeled
  • 1 Asian pear peeled and seeded
  • 1 large handful of cilantro leaves
  • ½ teaspoon of gochugaru (or red pepper flakes to taste)
  • 4 garlic cloves peeled
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons of toasted sesame oil
  • 3 pounds of sirloin tip beef (chuck beef roast works too, see note below)
  • 1 white onion cut into large chunks
Bowl Options:
  • Rice, quinoa, or cauliflower rice
  • Spinach or kale greens washed and ready
  • Eggs - fried over-easy or hard boiled
  • Jalapenos or chilies
  • Kimchi
  • Peanuts
  • Avocado slices
  • Cilantro
  • Hot sauce or spicy vinegar
  • Other options: shredded cold carrots, strips of daikon radish, edamame beans shelled, sliced scallions, etc.
  1. In the bowl of a food processor, combine all ingredients except meat and onion.
  2. Process until pureed and all the garlic and ginger is finely minced.
  3. Cut sirloin into 2-inch chunks and place into a glass dish or plastic bag with the marinade. Coat all the pieces. Refrigerate covered or sealed for at least an hour and up to 4. (You can skip this part if you are in a hurry.)
  4. In the bowl of an instant pot, place all the meat and marinade, plus the chopped onion. Stir and close the lid.
  5. Lock the lid into place and press [Manual] and then use the [+] button to choose 40 minutes pressure cooking time.
  6. When time is up, let steam release for about 10 minutes and finish with a quick release.
  7. Remove meat pieces with a strainer spoon to a plate or large dish to rest.
  8. Take leftover juices and sauce and bring to a boil in a large saucepan on the stove. Once boiling, turn down the heat slightly but keep it simmering and moving.
  9. While sauce is cooking down, shred the meat with 2 forks. When all meat is shredded, and the sauce has started to thicken, add the shredded meat to the pan of sauce and combine.
  10. Turn heat down, remove from heat if the meat starts to burn on the bottom of the pan. If the liquid is still too thin and watery, continue to cook it down.
  11. When the sauce is thick enough to coat all meat, remove from heat. Ready to serve.
  12. If saving for later, store cooled meat in a covered dish with all the sauce in the refrigerator. Heat as needed.
I've made this recipe multiple times with chuck beef roast. It shreds easily and is flavorful but sometimes too marbled with fat. Sirloin worked the best for me in the Instant Pot.

I’ve made this recipe with 3-4 lbs of chuck beef roast using the oven and the crockpot. All three ways work and especially if you cook down the sauce and stir back into meat at the end. For roasting in the oven, keep meat whole, salt and pepper both sides, sear meat on all sides in roasting pan heated with oil, pour pureed ingredients on top of meat, bring to a boil, cover and move to the oven and roast for about 2 1/2-3 hours at 350°, flipping meat halfway through. Meat should pull apart with 2 forks when it is done. If it does not, it will need more time. I usually don’t marinade the meat before cooking but you could.

Korean Beef Bowl | bowls of beef, spinach, rice or veggies, kimchi, peanuts, cilantro and an over easy egg. #shemadeit #Koreanbeef #healthyfood #instantpot #foodie #glutenfree #foodblogger #reacipe #protein #spinach #grainbowl #putaneggonit #winterfood #onthetable #foodgawker #dinnertime #mealprep #whatsfordinner #whole30 #loveyourlunch #feedfeed #f52grams #realfood #buzzfeedfood @thefeedfeed #instafood #eater #tacos #beefbowl | shemadeitshemight.com


Korean Beef Bowls! All the delicious parts made however you like: shredded beef, spinach, grain, kimchi, peanuts, cilantro, over-easy egg and pass the hot sauce! | shemadeitshemight.com



best chicken vegetable soup

I’m living in a new I-have-broth-on-hand stage of life and our soup season is better than ever. This is not because my soup is better than your soup, okay? I’m just saying we are actually eating soup these days and without a lot of effort. And on cold days and nights, our Minnesota souls are begging for it.

best chicken vegetable soup

With the richest broth ever just staring at you in the fridge or freezer, you will end up with no excuses, and it will taste as if you went out of your way. But, you didn’t, and isn’t that what makes it the best?

After writing about broth and remembering how comforting it can be, all I wanted was some chicken noodle soup without the noodles. Without the noodles though am I just eating broth and chicken in every bite? More carrots? And this question led me to the grocery store hoping a forgotten vegetable would reveal itself to me. And it did! A random rutabaga.

best chicken vegetable soup

I don’t remember the last time intentionally buying a rutabaga, and now I seem to have 2 in my fridge at all times. Does EVERYONE need to try more rutabaga? The answer is yes. Tim, however, thinks everyone now needs a puppy, I say just rutabaga. 🙄

The rutabaga originated as a mix of cabbage and turnip, sometimes called a swede which seems fitting. While sweeter than a turnip, and larger, they are covered with a little wax to keep the moisture in the root vegetable, so it doesn’t dry out. Vegetable peel off the skin, and when cooked it transforms into a slightly sweet and savory potato-like texture (but better?!). We LOVE them.

best chicken vegetable soup

Between the homemade stock and the rutabagas, this simple soup has risen to be our fall and winter favorite so far. And without the noodles, you won’t be hungry but completely satisfied with every bite.

best chicken vegetable soup

Here you go!

Best Chicken Vegetable Soup
Makes: 4-6
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 chicken breasts with skin on and bone in
  • 1 small yellow onion chopped
  • 2 stalks of celery chopped
  • 3 carrots chopped into thin coins
  • 1 rutabaga peeled and chopped
  • 8 cups of homemade or store-bought chicken stock or broth
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • chopped thyme and parsley
  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Rub chicken breast with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  3. Roast for 35 minutes until juices run clear, and skin is lightly starting to brown.
  4. Cool to the touch and remove skin, bones, and cut the chicken into bite-size pieces. Save the bones, skin, and pan juices for chicken broth!
  5. In a large stockpot heat oil and sauté onion until translucent and starting to brown.
  6. Add broth and bring to a boil. Turn down heat to simmering and add chicken, celery, carrots, and rutabagas.
  7. Cook for 15 minutes and taste to see vegetables are soft.
  8. Add salt & pepper to taste and add chopped parsley and/or thyme before serving.
Options: Add noodles and cook until just tender, add ribbons of kale for the last 5 minutes, and or as many other vegetables as you like.




Thanksgiving Menu Ideas for 2017

Perhaps you saw me numbering things on my Instagram story this weekend. Well, that was just me basically brainstorming what I was planning for Thanksgiving. It ended up with me asking for you to vote on my dessert dilemma. I mean is dessert ever really a dilemma on Thanksgiving? Nope, just a given.

Results for dessert below!

And since I am hosting this year, it’s going to be a classic mix of old and new. Here’s the list, the links, and if you were sitting at my table (I wish you were!), this is what we’re passing.

  1. Jaime Oliver’s Oven Roasted Turkey and Stuffing -Best part? You’ll stuff a sausage, chestnut, apricot, bacon, rosemary stuffing between the skin and breast meat to keep the meat moist, and each piece that cut has a layer of delicious stuffing, crunchy skin, and juicy meat. It’s our favorite.
  2. Ina Garten’s Classic Mashed Potatoes – Easy, delicious, and can be kept warm by placing the mixer bowl over a pan of simmering water for up to 30 minutes.
  3. Make-Ahead Gravy from Bon Appetit – I’m in love with this pro-tip. I’ll use my chicken stock from Sunday and cornstarch to keep it gluten-free. (I changed my mind on the cornstarch, see note below!👇)
  4. Whipped Sweet Potatoes with Brown Sugar Pecan Topping from Bon Appetit 1997! I first made these ten years ago, and no one will let us stop bringing them. Oh well, twist my arm, it’s on the menu, and my mom is making them. Best part? The topping! For the whipped sweet potatoes we cut the sugar in half, and we don’t pack down the brown sugar for the topping. 😉 It’s not needed!
  5. Simple Salad – greens, roasted pears, toasted pecans, blue cheese, and dried cherries or cranberries. I’ll use this easy lemon dressing. Toss a mix of your favorite greens with dressing and fill a large platter. Top with these roasted pears (different salad), slices of blue cheese, toasted pecans, dried cherries or cranberries if you wish. I’ll drizzle more dressing to top it all. Best part? I’ll make dressing and pears one day ahead.
  6. Smitten Kitchen’s Green Bean Casserole with Crispy Onions Ella’s request and find. She’s making it gluten-free by using my crispy shallots on top instead of the floured onion ring type pieces in the original recipe, and we’ll sub cornstarch for thickener. (I changed my mind on the cornstarch, see note below! 👇)
  7. Bread – the jury is for sure out on this! I’ll see how my Tuesday experiment goes with gluten-free artisan bread.
  8. Cranberry Chutney – From a last-minute text query to my family, I see that they DO like cranberries, so since I asked (don’t do this after today) I added this highly rated chutney to my list. It turns out all I needed to put on my list was cranberries. Done.
  9. Dessert: The winners from my Instagram story poll were the Pumpkin Custard Pie from Martha Stewart and Ina Garten’s French Apple Tart. The pumpkin will be new to us, and the apple tart is a family favorite we haven’t had in a few years. I’ll be making both twice, one gluten-free and one regular.
  10. Beverages – Tim, handing this one off to you, ok? A fall released Beaujolais Nouveau or cranberry punch with options for a little spirit? You decide.

What am I missing, friends? Nothing I hope, I feel stuffed and satisfied already. Tag your delicious food pics with #shemadeit or #hemadeit on Instagram, so I can see what you are making for 2017. I’ll be looking for you. 😉

Happy Thanksgiving!


*Last Minute Notes: If ever I need to thicken something for gluten-free, I’ve usually whisked a little cornstarch and water and added at the end. I don’t worry too much about making a gluten-free roux as I’m not trying to replicate something, but more maintain a great flavor of drippings or sauce even if it’s runnier. However, I see that both my gravy and green beans recipes call for a technical roux. I did some last minute research (oh Heather), and it seems that sweet rice flour or King Arthur’s Multi-Purpose Flour rises to the top for gluten-free flours that thicken into a roux when cooked with fat to thicken. I love learning from another’s experiments. I’m going to grab both at my last minute grocery store run today and see what comes! May the force be with anyone going back into a grocery store today. 🙏



how to make chicken broth a habit

The capacity and space to make chicken broth from scratch part of my life rhythm took YEARS. I just recently noticed that every time I need some broth or stock, I actually have some. How did this happen? 

I accidentally made my first bone broth before I had children, and as we know, that is a lot of years ago now that I’m counting. But something as simple as boiling meat and vegetables felt unattainable at specific points in my life. Sometimes it was the expense up front (while one can argue that it’s cheaper to make your own) and other times it just became the convenience of needing broth now, and the time it would take to make. 

I was once following a recipe for homemade chicken noodle soup, and before I realized what was happening with the first of the two chickens required, it asked me to throw away all the meat and bones I had just simmered for hours. What?! The waste! I read the recipe over again to be sure, but since I had scribbled down the recipe from a Barnes & Noble visit in my journal (before smartphones, people), my notes or the author had not adequately explained why. For example, this is going to draw out all the delicious and nutritious bits from your chicken, bones, and vegetables and create the richest broth you have ever tasted in your life, that would have helped my guilt just a bit. 

Instead, I scooped up some simmered chicken, thinking I could have some for lunch. Ha, no. It was tasteless, dry meat. So I reluctantly threw the first round of solids and simmered in the new chicken and fresh veggies? Ethereal. For the first time, I realized that simple soup could be both earthy and high-class. And healing. And worthy of gifting to your favorite people and guests.

I’m always curious about how or why certain habits stick. For me, it is all about timing. When you are in survival mode, making things like chicken broth ahead of time is nearly impossible and quite possibly NOT your next best thing.

Building a rhythm takes time and space to plan, but if you have a nudge to do it or a friend to make it with, here are my monthly and weekly steps to make chicken broth a habit:


Once a month, I make a version of Ina Garten’s Chicken Stock. I’ve never bought or fit three chickens into a stockpot as the recipe suggests. Up until this past year, I was always making stock in my 8-quart All-Clad stockpot. I could fit one chicken and would add water as it cooked down. This spring I decided to buy a cheaper but larger stock pot to see how much I would use it before I invested and added to my All-Clad collection. I purchased this Rachael Ray Enamel on Steel 12-Quart Covered Stockpot, Red Gradient, and my friend Nicolle bought this Cuisinart one. For now, I’m getting all my money’s worth out of this $33 find, and I love the size. Nicolle had to return hers for leaking on the rim, ok? 


1. Every week I roast at least 2 large bone-in skin-on chicken breasts. Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly rub two skin-on bone-in chicken breasts with olive oil, sprinkle them with salt and pepper, and roast for 35 minutes. If the breasts are unusually large, I give it five more minutes for juices to run clear, or you can check the temperature.

Cool, debone, and save meat for snacks, salads, or meal prep. Toss the bones, skin, and meat juices in a freezer jar or bag. This chicken is so juicy!

2. Secondly, anytime I roast a whole chicken, I save the bones and toss it in with the freezer collection. I even leave meat on bones knowing it’s going to go to good use later. This excites me so much–no waste, no worry!

3. Once a week when I’m at home doing something in the kitchen, preferably morning, I’ll pull out my stock pot.

  • Add the frozen or fresh chicken pieces, an unpeeled onion and garlic head halved, veggies from the fridge (even the wilted ones), plus all the thyme, dill, and parsley I have on hand to the pot covered with water. I also like to add 2 teaspoons of salt (more as needed) and a few pinches of whole black peppercorn berries if you have them, or just pepper.
  • Cover with water and boil for hours, at least 4 but more is great. Skim off the foam as it simmers and add water if it cooks down too far and you are letting it go for longer. Do not stress; it’s not fussy.
  • Cool, remove and toss all solids, strain through a fine-mesh strainer into clean jars. When you freeze your stock in a glass container, leave about 1 inch of space. The liquid will expand when it becomes a solid and especially in a jar with shoulders, it can break the glass.
  • Notes on broth vs. stock vs. bone broth – so many things to say but not all in this post.
    • Dr. Brad says to toss empty eggs shells into your broth because the inner and outer shell and lining of the eggshell have collagen and nutrients to support joints and bone health.
    • Stock is usually more bone based and broth more meat based.
    • For me, I do all of the above and call them broth or stock, as well as use them interchangeably depending on what I have in the house. No fuss about what is what for me.


Today is an Ina day. Since I’m entertaining for Thanksgiving this year, I’m going for the very best of stock, and I’m throwing in 2 whole chickens in addition to some meaty bones I have saved for the most flavor and will let it simmer for 4-8 hours. I’ll use it to make gravy ahead of time (pro-tip here!), moisten potatoes and stuffing, and baste the turkey or save the rest for soup next week. 

Speaking of Thanksgiving, when it comes to turkey I’m sticking with our favorite Jaime Oliver turkey and a few other family favorites, plus a few new. Check my Instagram this weekend for my final menu list and links for 2017. 



cooking class for November!

Let’s make it together!

kimchi & pickles class | shemadeitshemight.com

Kimchi & Pickles
make and take
November 12, 1-3 pm

Let’s Make It – Kimchi & Pickles is making a return. This class is for kimchi lovers and the kimchi curious. Kimchi & Pickles is a hands-on class where we’ll discuss gut health and the body + brain connections with what we eat, as well as taste the difference with fermented veggies and quick pickles. We’ll spend most of our the time making a jar of quick pickles to eat now and a jar of kimchi for later.

Cost is $50 which includes all supplies and ingredients.

kimchi & pickles class | shemadeitshemight.com


Limited space is available! Send me an email to register!



roasted pumpkin soup with dukkah

While my friend Kristin was traveling a few years ago, we had a couple of unspoken agreements that seemed to guide our cross-continental email and text exchanges. One, no editing needed, just type and connect. (Hello personal journal time for the both of us!) Two, tell me always what you are eating and with whom. There is so much to learn from living in a new land or knowing someone who does. (That’s me!) On numerous occasions, I remember Kristin telling me about the baked eggs with dukkah. At the time I didn’t have context for either. So when I started brainstorming all things “Kristin” for her baby shower, the research and testing began.

Dukkah is an Egyptian nut and spice blend but well known in Australia as well and often served sprinkled on baked eggs. I couldn’t track down a worthy pre-made dukkah blend anywhere, and finding a specific recipe wasn’t any easier. I did see Shelia Prakash’s questions to store owners in Egypt (where she couldn’t secure dukkah as well), and she learned that Egyptians tend to make their own house blends. After experimenting with it a few times, I like the idea of making it fresh, using what you have for nuts and tweaking the flavors and spice in the direction you want it to go. Plus the scents of roasting spices and nuts wafting through your house? You want this.

I whipped up another batch this past week and mailed some samples off with my belated spoons.🤦🏻‍♀️It’s a perfect fall addition to roasted squash or pumpkin soup.

You could also top olive oil with dukkah as a dish for dipping bread or add it to your next cheese board with olives, soft cheeses, meats, and toasts.

Makes: 1 cup
  • ¼ cup pine nuts
  • ½ cup hazelnuts - blanched or with skins on
  • ½ cup shelled pistachios - I can only find salted and roasted
  • 3 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • pinch of cayenne - or more as you wish
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • pepper - about 15 cracks
  • ½ teaspoon salt (more if needed)
  1. Preheat oven to 400°.
  2. On a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, lay pine nuts, hazelnuts, cumin, and coriander. Toast for 8-10 minutes until pine nuts are lightly brown, stirring nuts halfway through. At the halfway point, add the paprika as well and continue toasting.
  3. Allow nuts and spices to cool, then dump parchment of goods into a food processor along with the pistachios and add a pinch of cayenne, along with the salt and pepper.
  4. Blend until all nuts are roughly chopped, a few seconds only. I like mine with various size chunks and not just down to powder if possible.

This soup topped with dukkah and gluten-free grilled cheese with gruyere and apples was last night’s dinner hit. I promise you want this too.
roasted pumpkin soup with dukkah
Makes: Serves 8
  • 2 sugar pumpkins roasted, about 4 cups of puree (you can use canned or 4 cups of squash puree)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2 apples peeled, cored, and chopped - I like sweet honey crisp for this recipe
  • 2 small onions, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon salt plus more to taste
  • 1 cup coconut milk
To make pumpkin puree:
  1. Preheat oven to 400°.
  2. You’ll need a pan for roasting, cheesecloth, strainer, and a bowl.
  3. Pull stem off of your sugar pumpkin and slice in half from the top. With a metal spoon, scrape out the seeds and insides.
  4. Place pumpkin halves cut side down on a parchment lined sheet pan. Roast your pumpkin for 50-60 minutes until roasted all the way through. You can test with a fork poke if you are unsure.
  5. Let pumpkin cool to the touch.
  6. Pull off the skins and puree roasted pumpkin in a food processor until completely smooth. If you have time, strain the puree as follows, if not go ahead and make soup without the straining step, you might not need as much broth, but you decide how thick you want your soup.
  7. To Strain: Scrape the puree into a cheesecloth-lined colander. Place the colander in a larger bowl, cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for about 4 hours or overnight. Bring up the corner of the cheesecloth and twist mound of pumpkin to remove all the excess water that you can. Store what is left in a glass jar with a tight lid until ready to use.
To make soup:
  1. Heat a large stockpot with coconut oil and add chopped onions and apples, cook for about 5 minutes until onions and apples are soft and lightly browning.
  2. Next, add garam masala and cinnamon and stir for about 30 seconds to mix and release the fragrances.
  3. Add pumpkin puree and 3 cups of broth, stir over medium heat until combined and simmer for about 10 minutes to blend flavors. Add another cup of broth and the salt, stir to combine.
  4. Using an immersion blender puree all veggies and fruit together until smooth. If using a blender let the soup cool slightly before pureeing and then return to the pot until heated.
  5. Lastly, stir in 1 cup of coconut milk.
  6. Taste the soup and adjust seasonings as you wish. If you need a bit more sweetness, add a tablespoon of maple syrup, honey, or a bit more cinnamon. If you need more spice add a pinch of cayenne or a little more salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Top with dukkah nut blend in the recipe above!
  8. Makes 8 servings.


Both of these recipes are ready for you to make your own. Keep your spices and your salt & pepper handy, tasting as you go and adjusting the seasonings as you wish.

By the way, it’s not lost on me that most things I post these days on @heatherbursch and the blog have a thread of melancholy and mood. Ha! I assure you I’m in good fall spirits, and it’s starting right here with this soup and a sweater.




my reflections on an adventure themed baby shower

While I’m watching my little guy turn 18, one of my best friends is celebrating her little guy’s 1st year this week. I know 18 years is a lot of years to someone counting months and yet the view from here is as I said last week, all cliche. It goes so fast!

One of the sweetest things this last year has been meeting a new little friend. Just a year ago we didn’t know who he’d be, or the color of his stunning hair, or the sound of his singing that can take over all conversation in a car. We knew something about him though; we knew his momma.

adventure themed baby shower and paint dipped stones and spoons

And celebrating her feels like yesterday.

adventure themed baby shower

Adventure was the theme because well, the little person was joining these two amazing humans and their anthology. 

adventure themed baby shower

A new adventure is coming up, and I’m sure it will be a good one. – Sig Olson

Friends near and far contributed, whether it was hand-lettered placards from a friend who couldn’t come,

adventure themed baby shower

bottles of champagne for brunch toasting,

adventure themed baby shower

stones and driftwood from the north, photos of Kristin’s childhood, poems and readings sent from Portland, and the gifts and gentle words from friends and sisters.

adventure themed baby shower and paint dipped stones

We dipped rocks used to make a cairn, a stack of stones to serve as a path marker, to say to Kristin, we see you here on this path and we are marking this moment before-you-become-a-parent, that all the things before matter too, and now this.

adventure themed baby shower and paint dipped stones

She said that day; I’m not sure I’m ready. And I’ve heard it said again as her little guy jumped ahead of his due date by a couple of weeks, I could have used those two weeks! She laughs while sharing her reality, but sometimes it makes her eyes glisten just a bit too.

You don’t have to be a mother to know this universal truth, right? If only we had a little more time to prepare. A few more hours to read up on what might come. More time to organize, to maybe wrap our heads around this next happening, so there are no significant surprises. A little more set up, so we don’t mess up.

But here is one thing ALL of us said as we looked her in the face last October.

adventure themed baby shower

You got this. You will know what’s next. Trust yourself.

We also said it’s like one big game of “Tag, You’re It!” with your partner that never ends. And we nodded at the fear of sleepless nights and loss of self that can and most likely will happen, temporarily. Yes to all those things.

But it’s also good and deepening, and these little humans will change the world. Why travel down this parenting road or any potentially hard road? A question only individuals can answer for themselves. But when I looked over at my 14-year-old daughter and thought about my little now big guy, and my youngest one out with her dad that day, it’s easy in that reflective moment to say: because they will change the world, my world, their world. And I see everything different and fight different fights, and I’ve laid down ones that aren’t mine. And with the help of smart friends and therapists with ears to it all, I’ve deciphered my questions and not the ones of the woman next to me, but my question for whatever season I am in.

And if I can be so bold to notice, that is what my friend Kristin has done, she’s finding her questions, and she’s choosing her path. I feel so honored to have walked with her for years now. I’m watching and learning, and the sweetest gift has been remembering my story too along the way.

Kristin Johnson, The Anthology of Us

Adventure Themed Baby Shower Brunch

Theme: Adventure – inspired from a page out of Kristin and Cole’s story

Decor: nature, herbs, leaves, driftwood, stones, wood, gold, light, and shades of teal and fall

Gifts: group gift for a travel/diaper bag and items to fill it for baby on the go – S’s been on more airplains than any baby I know! 

Activity: Dipping stones and spoons

Brunch Menu: coming soon with recipes from Kristin too!

adventure themed baby shower

And in keeping with the theme of needing more time, and apparently, in honor of Sylvan’s 1st birthday, I finished the dipped spoons we made after painting rocks that day and actually mailed them this week. Watch the mail, ladies! 😉

adventure themed baby shower and paint dipped stones and spoons

For more on how to dip spoons, take a peek at the quick DIY on Instagram. (It does not take one year to make!) We dipped baby spoons, stones, and wood things to go along with our theme.

adventure themed baby shower and paint dipped stones and spoons

But who’s stopping you from glass or wood bowls or even chairs and tables like these from the talented Kristy Taylor? Which means you can stick to spoons and follow her @kristy.taylor.design to find what she’s dipped for you.


And last but not least, a poem from my Evelyn to her little friend Sylvan, that pretty much says all of our feels from knowing him this past year.

Evelyn and Sylvan

The cuteness is too cute.

I can’t get enough.

I love you, Sylvan.

You make me very happy when you sing to me.

Your ocean blue eyes.

You are to love for.

— Evelyn, age 6

Happy Birthday, Sylvan! Happy 1st year, Kristin and Cole. You are rocking this parenting gig.

I love parties! You too? For more menu ideas and activities (to avoid all shower games!) take a look at these past baby shower celebrations. Recipes from Kristin’s Baby Shower fall menu are coming soon!


Picture Credit: Thanks Rebecca for #1, Natalie for #2, #3, #5, #6, and #10, and Kristy for #13.