Monthly Archives: December 2016

26Dec/16
Plated with some sweet potato mac

Meatloaf…

I‘m sure as a child, there are many of you who upon hearing the word meatloaf cringed at the thought of having to eat it?  Well, I was one of those kids who loved meatloaf, and still do.  This recipe is one that I’ve adapted a bit from Miranda Lambert’s recipe that I found on Pinterest a while back.
This is a meal that you can’t be afraid to dig your hands into and get a little dirty as you prepare it.  If that’s not for you, then you probably want to stop right there, but just know that you are really missing out.  The nice thing about this is that it is very easy and quick to prepare.
Just so you know, this will look like enough food to feed an army; however, it is such a big hit that everyone will be going back for seconds, and before you know it, most of it will be gone.  If you are fortunate enough to have any leftovers, this is one of those foods that gets better as it sits in the fridge, and is even more delicious the next day. I’ve eaten it hot, cold, in sandwiches, and it never let’s me down.  This is one of those recipes that everyone will keep asking you to make again and again…

 

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Meatloaf Recipe
**note: I pretty much never measure any of this, but just eyeball it all as I throw it in**

1 lb lean ground beef
1 lb ground turkey
1 lb ground sausage (you can play around with different flavors for a little variety in the overall taste, just remember to read the label and see what else is added in before you buy)
1 pack Glutino crackers (plain or multigrain work)
2 eggs
a few dashes of Worcestershire
1 tsp – 1 tbsp prepared mustard (can use different kinds to play with the flavor a little more)
dash of maple syrup
1/2- 1 whole finely chopped bell pepper
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup ketchup
mushrooms, chopped
Large handful spinach, chopped

Topping:
1 cup ketchup
maple syrup

Mix all of the ingredients together really well in a large bowl (don’t be afraid to dig in with your hands!).  Put in a large casserole and shape into a flatter but slightly rounded loaf.  Leave just a small amount of space around edges for uniform cooking. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.
Prepare the topping while the loaf is baking.  Blend together 1 cup of ketchup with a dash of maple syrup.
After the loaf is done baking, pour the grease out.  Spread the topping generously on the meat.  Place the pan back in the oven and bake for 15 minutes.  If you want, you can broil it for the last 4-5 minutes to get the top nice and golden. Allow it to cool for 5-10 minutes before cutting to serve.

Enjoy!!!  As always, eat well and be merry…Mmmmm

17Dec/16

Thanksgiving Leftovers…

Thanskgiving is a feast of all feasts at my house.  This year, we had a 22 lb. turkey and many other dishes to feed the crew.  Needless to say, there were quite a few leftovers to feast on over the next few days.  I’m going to share with you two of my favorite meals to eat over those next days.  These are both very big hits with the crowd, and they are both super easy to prepare.  Here are the leftovers you will need for these: Turkey, Cranberry Relish, Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes, Gravy, Veggies.

Open Faced Turkey Salad Sandwich topped with Brie and Cranberry Relish
Ingredients:
2 cups Turkey, shredded or roughly chopped
1 cup Greek Yogurt
1 heaping Tbsp Dijon Mustard
1/2 Lemon Juiced
2 Tbsp Fresh Parsley
Bread
Brie
Cranberry Relish
*You can add diced apple, but my relish has that, so I do not*

1.  Mix first 5 ingredients together in a bowl.
2.  Lightly toast 1-2 slices of bread
3.  Top each slice of toast with a scoop or two of the turkey mixture.  Be sure to spread it around and cover as much of the bread as possible.
4.  Top each slice of toast with some slices of Brie
5.  Put under the broiler for a few minutes to melt the cheese.  Keep a close eye on this, as it does not take long to melt everywhere and/or burn.
6.  Top with a scoop of the cranberry relish.
7.  Enjoy

Turkey Shepherd’s Pie
Ingredients:
Turkey, shredded or cubed
Onion, chopped
Green Beans
Corn
Carrots
Peas
Gravy
Mashed Potatoes
Mashed Sweet potatoes

1.  Mix everything but the mashed potatoes/sweet potatoes together in a bowl.  Be sure to use enough gravy that everything is coated well and will not be dry once cooked.
2.  Pour into 2 square dishes, coated in cooking spray.
3.  Top one dish with a layer of the mashed potatoes.  Top the other with a layer of mashed sweet potatoes.
4.  Bake at 350 degrees until everything is heated through and bubbly.  If you want to broil them for the last few minutes to brown the tops you can.
5.  Serve and enjoy.

I don’t really measure any of this.  You just have to eyeball it all to get the ratios you want.  Sorry, there are no pictures to share either.  Once they are made, they are gone before you can even grab the camera.  Try these out when you get  a chance and let me know what you think.  As always, eat well and be merry!

11Dec/16

A Healthy, Gluten Free Thanksgiving…

I host my family for Thanksgiving at my cabin.  We have been doing this for several years now, and  I love it for many reasons:
 
1.  I get to spend some quality time at my cabin, where it is so quiet and peaceful and a nice way to get away from the busy pace of life I am used to.
2.  All of my family is there.
3.  I make the menu and prepare the food.
All of these are wonderful things to be thankful for, but I think my favorite is the fact that I can prepare such a healthy menu for my family, and everybody enjoys it just as much as a traditional menu.  I love knowing that my family is getting a great meal, one that is healthy and represents what I stand for.  Mind you, there is a lot of hard work that goes in to me preparing this feast, as I make everything homemade, but in the end, it is so worth it.
Typically, I will chop and prepare as much as possible the night before (with the help of my sister), that way on Thanksgiving morning, it cuts back on time, and is mostly just putting everything together and cooking it.
The menu pretty much stays the same every year, with some minimal changes.  This year’s menu was:

Curried Butternut Squash Soup
Shaved Brussels Sprouts w/Manchego and Almonds
Fresh Cranberry Relish
Apple Shallot Roasted Turkey
Cider Gravy
Mashed Potatoes w/Parsnips & Chives
Wild Rice, Italian Sausage and Shiitake Stuffing
Coconut Cardamom Sweet Potatoes
Green Beans
Pumpkin Bread

Check back soon and I will tell you my favorite thing to do with my leftovers.  You will not want to miss these, as they may even be more delicious than the actual Thanksgiving meal.

Check out the Thanksgiving menu photos below.

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