Let it ride

So, the other night, I was telling you that I like to cook things Matt doesn't like when he's out of town.

And today, I had a great idea of what that would be.

Enter, the meatloaf.

Now, I make a lot of different kinds of meatloaf.  There's my father's recipe, which is excellent, but very heavy and not really part of my diet for the moment.

There's the mini-loafs I make in muffin tins - they aren't a set recipe, but more of variations on a theme.  Beef, egg and some kind of starch as a binder  - I've used everything from bread crumbs or oatmeal to crumbled Cheez-Its or tortilla chips.  There's some kind of sauce - bbq, ketchup, salsa - whatever.  And some vegetables - peppers, onions...

Colorado Chili Loaf - not healthy, not easy, not happening tonight.

Now, the one I made tonight is actually pretty healthy - it works out to roughly 370 calories per serving.

It's a turkey loaf.  I got the recipe from a cookbook I bought years ago to teach you how to cook for one or two people.  Which, believe it or not, isn't easy.  Most recipes start at serves four, but they can go all the way to six, eight.  People who have families tell us smaller units to "just freeze the leftovers" - but we have limited freezer space, and not everything freezes well.  So you can make one big pot of something and eat off of it for a week, or you can learn to scale. 

Here's what goes in the turkey loaf:

1 pound lean ground turkey
1 egg
1 cup of rolled oats (uncooked oatmeal)
1 red bell pepper
1 clove of garlic
1 piece of fresh ginger - about the size of your thumb
1/2 cup of pineapple chunks (totally optional - I rarely use it, tbh)

Puree the ginger, pepper and pineapple into a slurry - I have a tiny chopper that does it in a flash, but you could use a blender, Cuisinart, or just a knife and cut it super fine.  Whatev.

Combine the slurry with the turkey, oats, egg.  Use a garlic press and add the garlic.

Mix well with your hands.  Form four small loaves and put them on a baking sheet.  Bake for about 45-60 minutes - it just kind of depends on how wet they are.  They'll be dry/firm to the touch - you'll know when they're done.

The reasons Matt doesn't like them?  First the valid reason - they're a little dry.  And yeah, I'll admit that. They don't have a sauce, and I have no idea what you might use, other than maybe a teriyaki sauce?  Which, I don't care for.  I could also melt a little pepper jelly and glaze them with that, but - that kind of defeats the health values.

The main reason he doesn't like it is a matter of opinion.  He thinks it's bland.  Well, he prefers bold, spicy, hot stuff.  This isn't that.  You could make it that with some hot peppers thrown in to the slurry, or some cayenne mixed in. Matt throws hot sauce on his and it works.

But what I like about this is the ginger, the garlic, and it's really one of the first recipes I learned to make, and make riffs on.  For example, the original recipe requires soy sauce, and I just don't need it.  So, yeah.

Anyway, that's what I made tonight.

No, they are not pleasant to look at.

And it was damn good.



Christopher said…
Not pleasant to look at but if they were good that's all that matters.
That they were healthy matters slightly, but, hey, if it doesn't taste good it doesn't matter how healthy it is because you won't eat it.
And after reading about the slurry that includes pineapple I'm craving pineapple salsa. And chips.
Not healthy, but it tastes good.