Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Mini Mediterranean Turkey Meatloaves

Conversation on his way home from work on the phone...

Bassman:   "What's for dinner?"

Me:  "Mini Mediterranean Turkey Meatloaves.  One of our cooking club recipes."

Bassman:  ...long....pause...more...long...pause...awkwardly...long...pause...  "Sounds healthy".

Me:  (Chuckling) I guess it is, it'll be different for sure!

Hang with me, I've gone from posting very few photos to lots of photos!    I think the photos on the iowagirlseats.com site have inspired me.  Go look.  I'll wait.  Looks like the food is sitting there in front of me!

I have only cooked with ground turkey once before and I don't even remember what I made, maybe spaghetti, I don't know.   But I love mediterranean food, although I don't really know a lot about it.  I just like the feta cheese, cucumber, black olives, green olives, tomato and olive oil combinations.

Add an egg to the ground turkey.

Add the panko crumbs.

Add the feta cheese.  Now we're tasting meditarranean!

Add chopped black olives.  Tossed a few in my mouth too.

Add the strong and yummy red onion.  The red onion also makes me hungry for a hamburger...all the way.

Add the garlic.

Plop in the hummus.  I considered making the hummus from scratch.  It requires tahini and I didn't want to buy it unless I knew I would be making more hummus in the future.  I like it, but the rest of the fam turns it down.  So I just got the hummus from the deli counter.

Add the seasonings.

Mix it all together and separate into 4 portions.

Form mini meatloaf shapes (or sqovals in my case) and spread more hummus on top.

While the meatloaves are baking, prepare the fresh salsa starting with basil.

I have found the perfect place to store the basil in the bag.  It's on the refrigerator door out in the garage staying cool and not too cold.  I have a picture of the bag being held with the magnet to the door but I'll spare you that photo, ha ha!

Add chopped cucumber.

Add chopped tomato, salt and pepper.

Toss it around and try a bite of it while waiting on the meatloaves.  I think I doubled the salsa because I knew ahead of time extra would be needed.

Spoon it on top of the meatloaves with added feta cheese.

Spoon on more as needed, I loved it with the meatloaf!

I also made a couple of sides to go with it or in the event we didn't care for the meatloaf.  This serving was my meal that night, no sides needed.  Very tasty and filling.  The ground turkey is seasoned nicely although the black olives seem to lose their flavor here.  So just add a few to the side along with the salsa.

The Bassman took leftovers to work and I realized he didn't take the salsa.  It just won't be the same without it!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Balsamic Vinegar Chicken with Fresh Tomatoes

What's for dinner?  That question was answered quickly!  The same day this recipe for Balsamic Vinegar Chicken with Fresh Tomatoes went up on the Sweet As Pie Cooking Club site it was on my plate that night.

It was very good and as the author says it's clean and healthy.

I added a pat of butter and a little olive oil to the skillet to help with browning the chicken.

The size of chicken breast these days is just unreal.  I sliced each breast in half lengthwise so they were thinner, cooked faster and closer to a realistic portion size.  

While the chicken was browning, I pureed the ingredients for the sauce.   The recipe calls for only half a teaspoon of balsamic vinegar and with all that basil and garlic, this could be called Garlic Basil Chicken!

Here's everything ready to go into the oven: the sauce spread over the chicken and the fresh veges spread on top.   My husband doesn't care much for mushrooms so I left them kinda big so he could easily avoid them.  Doesn't that red onion look good?

I baked it about 30 minutes which was probably a little long but I like to make sure the chicken is done.

I served it along with roasted green beans and stewed potatoes.

This month's cooking club recipes are off to a great start with this one!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Crockpot Cheese Tortellini

Spring break was off to a great start with this Sweet As Pie Cooking Club recipe for March.   This Crockpot Cheese Tortellini was ready in the crock pot when my daughters and a hungry baseball playing boyfriend pulled in the driveway.

When I was working, I wasn't a fan of crockpot recipes that were less than 8 hours.  After all, I was gone for at least a 10 hour work day, usually longer.  After pulling this one together, I began seeing how I could use a 4-6 hour recipe.  This cooking duration would be great for a day of DIY projects, sewing or working out in the yard.  Perfect for those days when I get started on a project after lunch and before I know it, it's dinnertime and I don't want to stop to prepare dinner!  Do you know what I mean?

Unfortunately, I deleted some of the pictures from my camera thinking I had already copied them to the computer.  Anyway, I chose to try the Publix Greenwise Chicken Italian sausage in this recipe.  I removed the skins and cooked the sausage breaking it up into small pieces (not pictured) before adding it to the pot.

I added extra spinach because it's healthy and we like it.  For those who don't like it, after it cooks with all those other italian flavors, it's not going to have much green flavor left!  So eat those greens.

We also love roasted asparagus and the price finally went down from $4.99 lb to $2.99.   So eat more greens.

The recipe says cook on Low 4-6 hours, but I cooked mine on High almost 6 hours.  Crockpot temperatures vary a great deal.

Time to eat!  "This is good!", they said.  It's at this point that I got a lesson on the correct pronunciation of spinach.  It's pronounced spin-ach, not spin-ish (with a southern drawl).   Never stop learning, I say.  

I'll keep this recipe in mind for a busy project day.  
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