Friday, October 31, 2008

of course ....

this time of year, my thoughts turn towards food. yesterday (?) i cooked off some chicken. i had chicken quarters leftover from a recipe. i don't like chicken quarters ... or more specifically, i don't like to prep them (all that fat and skin!).

so, i poached them, and pulled off the wee amount of meat. i saved the broth.

the broth, i used tonight for a vegetable soup. hey, what's veggie soup w/o a meat base? (that's kinda like a veggie burger w/o bacon.)

veggies? what i had ... celery, carrot, stewed tomatoes, frozen cauliflower, frozen lima beans, onion, chopped green cabbage, etc ... lots of misc. veggies. and it was delicious =)

i had a hearty bowl of soup with the bread i made last night. now, talk about homemade .....

Thursday, October 23, 2008

meat loaf, pt.2

so, sometimes when i make something, i kinda get on a kick and want to try variations. since my first meat loaf was of the 'gourmet' variety, i wanted to make one more 'traditional'.

i went online searching recipes, and found paula dean's old-fashioned meat loaf via the food network website.

making two was an accident. apparently, when i was chopping the onion and green pepper, i thought i was measuring with the 1/2 cup, but was actually measuring with the 1 cup. oops.

that required another quick visit to the grocery store to buy another pound of meat.

but, a happy accident it was ... nothing wrong with leftovers!

jackie also made some delicious butter beans she'd bought at the farmer's market. i didn't take notes on her recipe, but she did cook the beans in bacon fat, and used this lonesome slice to add in later (lucky it didn't get eaten before then).

and mashed yukon golds with parmesan and garlic! wow! now that's a solid southern dinner .....

i think my meat loaf phase is over ... for now. though, i haven't tried it yet with ground turkey.

pesto meat loaf recipe

bring on fall and all the yummy foods of the colder months! i have been trying to conjure fall for awhile, with chili, enchiladas, bean soups, bread making, etc.

my most recent venture was into the wide world of meatloaf.

pesto meat loaf

2 pounds lean ground pork, s&p to taste, if desired
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons finely chopped garlic
1 cup fine bread crumbs
1/3 cup toasted pine nuts
1 cup finely chopped, loosely packed fresh basil
1/2 cup finely chopped, loosely packed parsley
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
1 egg, lightly beaten
fresh tomato sauce (recipe below)

1. preheat oven to 400 degrees
2. put the pork in a mixing bowl. add salt and pepper.
3. heat the oil in a small skillet. add the garlic and cook, stirring, until it is wilted. add to the pork.
4. add the bread crumbs, pine nuts, basil, parsley, parmesan cheese and egg. blend well.
5. put the mixture into a standard six-cup loaf pan. pack it down and smooth over the top. place in the oven and bake about one hour or until the internal temperature registers 165 degrees. remove from the oven and let the meat loaf stand about 15 minutes before slicing and serving with the tomato sauce.

yield: six to eight servings.

fresh tomato sauce

2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped onions
1 teaspoon finely minced garlic
2 cups peeled, chopped fresh tomatoes
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
s&p to taste, if desired
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

1. heat the oil in a saucepan and add the onions and garlic. cook, stirring, until they are wilted.
2. add the tomatoes, bay leaf, thyme, salt and pepper and bring to the boil. cover and simmer about 10 minutes. stir in the butter and basil.

yield: about 1 1/2 cups

this recipe was given to me by a friend that knows how much i love food (thanks winnie!). she had clipped it from a newspaper years ago. i have lost my copy twice now, so i figured i should post it here incase my page gets lost again.

this was my first meat loaf. holy crap, it was the bomb! sadly, i won't be making this again 'til next summer or early fall, as you have to have a ton of basil ... either from the farmer's market or someone's garden. see that big bunch above? that was from winnie's garden. that was enough basil to make a dozen loafs or an amazing batch of pesto. sadly, i did not have the energy to make pesto. for some reason, i always start this cooking thing too late at night.

Thursday, October 16, 2008


what possibly could stuart do to end up in a freezer quart bag?! well, whatever it is ... he's staying there 'til laundry day ....