Monday, November 21, 2011

Magical Meatloaf

Before we get to the magical recipe of goodness, two things:

1) NO, Jeremy did not bring me food from the event. He said it was "all packed up" by the time he got a break from swiping credit cards for the silent auction. Likely story. BUT, he DID see inside a local celebrity's wallet and saw he has a Kroger Plus card, so ... now we know he shops at Kroger instead of Meijer. Good to know. Good to know. (Jess and Loe'l -- if either of you are reading this, it was J. C. from the news ... if you can crack that code, you still love him as much as you used to).

2) I HAD to update the 2011 Holiday Giving Guide, Vol. II (for the Wee Ones). There were some things I forgot and I decided to add a few things we already got for Josephine, so if you are still shopping for little ones, check it out. I also added a few previously unpublished Josie pics, so ... yeah.

And now ... a meatloaf I liked!!! GASP! I have NEVER been a fan of meatloaf and seriously thought it was just ketchup mashed onto meat and baked until dry. However, I know Jeremy loves it, and he is nice enough to never request things I don't like or never make, but I came across a new healthier recipe (spoiler alert: there is neither beef nor ketchup in this recipe!) and decided to give it a whirl.

I was pleasantly surprised, to say the least. I thought there was a chance I would like it okay, but I did not plan on loving it. This will definitely be a recipe I make often.

Turkey and Quinoa Meatloaf 
adapted from

1 20-ounce package of ground turkey
1/4 cup quinoa
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 small onion
I large clove garlic
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon hot sauce
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 egg
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 additional teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon water


1. Bring quinoa and water to boil in a saucepan over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until quinoa is tender and water has been absorbed (about 15 minutes).

A note on quinoa (pronounced keen-WAH ... I'm fairly certain) -- if you haven't used it before, do not fear the quinoa! It is a super grain and can stand alone as a protein and has all kinds of other magical healthy things, but does NOT taste like butt like some other healthy things. I found mine in with the rice/barley/cous cous. (It is also wheat and gluten free, FYI)

2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. 

3.  Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in the onion and cook until softened and translucent (about 5 minutes). Add garlic and cook another minute (being careful not to burn); remove both from heat and set aside to cool.

Another side note regarding one of my favorite new "tricks": If you have a recipe that calls for only using part of on a onion, chop up the whole onion, use as much as you need to, then put the remainder in a ziploc baggy and toss in the freezer. Pull out next time you need diced onion and toss in your recipe. Super-convenient for all those recipes I make that start with ground turkey, onion, and garlic. I have no idea why I never thought of this before. I would always leave part of the onion unchopped in the fridge, promising to use it the next day ... then I would find it a week later and have to throw it away. Wasteful!

4.  Stir the turkey, cooked quinoa, onions, tomato paste, hot sauce, 2 tablespoons of Worcestershire, egg, salt, and pepper in a large bowl until well combined. Mixture should be very moist.

Gross, I know. I dislike meat, and dislike raw meat even more. If you remember the deep level of my hatred, you will realize just how much I love that husband of mine. I would include Josephine in that, but if she ever isn't into dinner, there are always vegetables and rice and cottage cheese ready for her. This raw meat adventure was just for Jeremy.

5. Shape into a loaf on a foil lined baking sheet.

I went for a circle because I figured it would have some sort of magical advantage over a loaf. Do whatever you want.

6.  In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, 2 teaspoons Worcestershire, and 1 teaspoon water. The directions say to rub this "paste" over the top of the meatloaf. I made this TWICE, and both times it was the same consistency as water, so I just dumped it on. It worked just fine that way, too.

7.  Bake at 350 for about 50 minutes or until no longer pink. Internal temperature should read at least 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Let cool for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Then you have ...

Yes, my slices are pretty small, but they were DEE-lish. It was pretty strange that Jeremy, who likes regular meatloaf, loved this as much as I, who HATES regular meatloaf. Strange but awesome.

If you try it and make the loaf taller, let me know if the meat comes out moist or dry. Perhaps I will experiment with size. Also, maybe the next loaf will be in the shape of a heart. ROMANCE. RAW MEAT ROMANCE. 


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