Happy first day of spring. For Seattle, this day brings rain. Which is somewhat unusual these days. Our winter, as opposed to that on the East Coast, has been mostly sunny. And warmer than normal. It’s been very odd—and quite lovely. I’d forgotten what it was like to see sun more than once or twice during the winter months. But it has everyone in Seattle asking: what will the weather be like this summer? We live for our summers, so we are a bit nervous that we will be getting the grey and rain we didn’t get this winter.
I’ve been working on last-minute edits of my next book, Gluten-Free Wish List: Sweet and Savory Treats You’ve Missed the Most.
The design folks at my publisher finalized the cover last week–I can’t wait to show it to you! And the book is actually up on Amazon for preorder (link above). If you already know that you’re going to buy the book (if so, thank you from the bottom of my heart!), you can do so now. FYI: preorders are so helpful to authors. They help the book get ranked well by Amazon (which in turn, means more people see it as a suggestion, which means even more people buy it, which means my publisher is very happy with me). The current publication date is September 29, 2015—squeee!
In other news, we are still trying to get used to Girlfriend being in high school. It’s so odd to know that the next step is her going to college and being out of the house. I can’t quite wrap my brain around it. I’ve started to get annoyingly nostalgic about her toddler and little girl years. It drives her crazy, but I can’t help myself.
As I finish up the last-minute stuff that goes into writing a book, I wanted to share a recipe that we’ve been enjoying this winter. It’s for turkey meatloaf. This is a riff on a recipe I found in Bon Appetit magazine several ago. What I like about it is that it is not tomato sauce/ketchup based, but rather veggie and herb-based. It’s quite tasty and the whole family loves it. It has a lot of flavor and stands alone quite well—no need for a topping or a sauce. It’s also really nice for leftovers. We eat about half of it for dinner and then spend the next few days using it for lunch and snacks.
It’s made in a small 1 lb loaf tin—which I’ve been using a lot lately ( and is used in my new book). I haven’t use a larger 2 lb loaf tin (the conventional 9 x 5 in tin) for this recipe, so I can’t advise you on using that. But, if that’s the only one you have and you want to experiment–go ahead and experiment and tell me how it went!
One thing I’ve done with this recipe is make sure all of the veggies included are cooked before they go into the meatloaf. I have discussed before on the blog that I have Oral Allergy Syndrome (OAS) and therefore I am allergic to most fruits, veggies, and nuts if they are raw. But I am fine with them as long as they are adequately cooked. Since they don’t cook very much within the meatloaf, I cook them before I put them in.
Even though this recipe has several steps, it’s easy to do the preparation one night (or earlier in the day), stick all of the ingredients in the fridge for up to 24 hours, and then compile and bake them later or the next night. That way I can just mix everything and pop it into the oven on a night when I need a quick dinner.
Turkey Meatloaf, Gluten-Free (and Dairy-Free and Egg-Free)
- 2 cups (120 g) ½ inch bread cubes from gluten-free bread
- ⅔ cup (155 ml) chicken or vegetable stock
- 1 tablespoon ground flax-seeds
- hot water (see directions)
- (you can also use 2 lightly beaten extra-large eggs in the place of the flax seeds and hot water)
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 2 medium carrots, grated on the large holes on the grater (or diced)
- 2 large kale leaves, cut into ½ in pieces (optional)
- 1 pound (455 g) ground turkey (or chicken) white meat
- 1 pound (455 g) ground turkey (or chicken) dark meat
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1½ teaspoons coarse salt (or 1 teaspoon table salt)
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil plus more for sautéing and brushing
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). Brush an 8-1/2 by 4-1/2 by 2-3/4-inch (22-by-11-cm) loaf pan with olive oil.
- Place bread cubes in a medium bowl and pour broth over all. Toss to coat and let stand. While you are preparing the other ingredients, toss every so often. By the end of the preparation period, the broth should be completely absorbed by the bread cubes.
- Place ground flax seeds into a glass measuring cup. Pour hot water into the cup until it reaches the ½ cup (120 ml) mark. Whisk to combine. Let sit for at least 20 minutes. While you are preparing the other ingredients, whisk every so often. By the end of the preparation period, the mixture should be a thick gel and cooled to room temperature.
- Pour two or three tablespoons of olive oil into a large frying pan set over medium heat. Put onions and carrots in and saute, stirring frequently, until the onions have become translucent and the carrots have softened, about 15 minutes. Add the kale and saute for a few minutes more to wilt the kale (if using). Remove from heat and let mixture cool to room temperature.
- While the onion mixture is cooling place both pounds of turkey meat into a large bowl. Use a large wooden spoon to mix until combined. Add the parsley, thyme, salt, and pepper and mix until combined. Add cooled onion mixture and mix until combined.
- Add your soaked bread crumbs and the flax-seed gel (or eggs), and 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and mix until everything is well combined.
- Scrape mixture into prepare loaf pan, smooth it so it fills the pound, and mound the top towards the center (this gives the loaf a nice look when baked). I do this by using a rubber spatula.
- Bake for 1 hour 25 minutes, or until a thermometer inserted into the center reads 170 degrees F/75 degrees C or more. The top of the loaf will be shiny and golden brown.
- Let rest for 15 minutes before serving to allow the juices to redistribute throughout the loaf.
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