Sunday, December 31, 2006

Turkey and Wild Mushroom Meatloaf Patties with pan gravy

Martina asked for the recipes of what we had for Christmas dinner. There were some old favorites and some relatively new things. This was the main entree.

Serves 4

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (evoo)
8 crimini (baby portobello) mushrooms, chopped
8 shiitake mushrooms, chopped (I used dried and saved the liquid from re-hydrating to use in the gravy - you could also use it in the potatoes)
1 shallot, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 & 1/3 pounds ground turkey (1 package)
3 or 4 sprigs fresh sage, chopped (about 2 tablespoons)
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup italian bread crumbs (I used plain)
1 egg, beaten
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
2 cups chicken or turkey broth
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning (i skipped this)

Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons evoo (twice around the pan). Add chopped mushrooms and shallots and season with salt and pepper. Sauté mushrooms, 5 or 6 minutes, until dark and tender. Remove from heat. Transfer mushrooms to a bowl and return pan to stovetop to preheat to cook patties.

Place turkey in a mixing bowl. Make a well in the center of meat. Add sage, Worcestershire, bread crumbs, and beaten egg. Scrape sauteed mushrooms and shallots into the bowl. Add salt and pepper. Mix together and make a small, 1-inch patty. Place patty in the hot pan and cook 1 minute on each side. Taste for seasonings and adjust seasonings in meatloaf mixture accordingly. Divide meatloaf mixture into 4 equal parts by scoring the meat before you form patties. Form into oval patties, 1 inch thick. Add 1 tablespoon evoo to the pan, and arrange patties in the pan. Cook 6 minutes on each side and transfer to a serving plate or individual dinner plates. Return pan to heat and add butter. When butter has melted, whisk in flour and cook a minute or two. Whisk in broth and season gravy with poultry seasoning, salt and pepper to taste. thicken gravy to your liking and pour over patties, reserving a little to pass at the table.

Editorial Comments on the Recipe.
This was from the Rachel Ray 30-Minute Meals get togethers book. More than a lot of the 30-minute meal recipes this one really pushed the envelope of what you can do in 30 minutes. Keep in mind that how it is written, while these are cooking you are also making herbed mashed potatoes and green beans with lemon and toasted almonds. I think if everything is cut up and all the prep is good - you have all of your utensils and plates and mysterious cooking implements at the ready you MIGHT be able to do this in 30 minutes. That being said, if you allow a little longer it is Well Worth It.
I have made this one other time and I did not chop the mushrooms as small as I did at Christmas. The patties did not hang together as well, but the larger mushrooms made for some nice texture contrasts. Also I would probably recommend putting the patties into a warm oven while finishing the gravy to keep everything nice and warm.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Buckwheat Noodles with Peanut Lime Sauce

Originally uploaded by lesliegardner.
I got this from the FoodDay and it is just as good as it sounds! I could not find Buckwheat noodles so I used Quinoa noodles instead. Also, I omitted the sugar and didn't miss it even one iota. I bet it would be great with some chicken in there if one were so inclined!
I found this was best right after it was made. After being in the fridge, the PB gets a little pasty but maybe if it were brought to room temp again before serving it'd be heaven again.

So since I can't seem to make the link to the recipe work, I'll have to paste it in. EVS, Oregonlive! I guess my friends won't be looking at your advertisers today, now, will they?

1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
21/2 tablespoons soy sauce
21/2 tablespoons water
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
11/2 inches fresh ginger, peeled, cut into chunks
3 green onions, green and white parts, roughly chopped
21/2 tablespoons firmly packed brown sugar
1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes
11/2 cups broccoli florets
1 cup snow peas or frozen petite peas
8 ounces buckwheat noodles
1 red bell pepper, cored and cut into thin 1-inch strips
2/3 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro, plus extra for garnish
1/3 cup chopped unsalted roasted peanuts
4 lime wedges

To make the sauce, puree the peanut butter, soy sauce, water, lime juice, vinegar, ginger, green onions, brown sugar and red pepper flakes in the food processor. Put the broccoli in a small pan of water and cook just until tender; add the snow peas just to warm them through. If you are using frozen peas, just drop them into the hot water with the broccoli right before draining.

Cook the noodles until al dente according to package directions; drain.

Toss the noodles with the broccoli, peas, bell pepper and cilantro, and toss with the peanut sauce. Place into bowls and garnish with the chopped peanuts, more chopped cilantro and a lime wedge.

Monday, September 25, 2006

I could be a guest on this show!

It's been a while, huh? I don't have any new recipes right now, but I did see this cooking related cartoon which would have made me snarf if I'd been trying to take a drink of something while I read it!

Friday, May 19, 2006

Avocado With Salmon Salsa

Jessica asked for this recipe. It's really phenomenal and definitely deserves its place here! I hope I'm invited to what she's making them for!

1 sm shallot, peeled and chopped
1 jalapeno chile, cored, seeded and minced (if mom comes over I only put in a little)
4 oz chopped smoked salmon (I've always used the lox kind although I just realized the recipe does not specify that)
6 cherry tomatoes, chopped
1T minced fresh cilantro
1/4t freshly ground pepper
juice of 1/2 lemon (2T)
2 small avocados, pitted and halved (the recipe says one avocado but it makes way too much filling for only two halves.
2 lemon wedges

Combine all ingredients but avocado and lemon wedges
Spoon into avocado halves and garnish with lemon wedges (I have never done that last part, myself)

These not only look cool, but they taste incredible - so rich and salty and just...mmmmmmmmm!

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Red Lentil Mulligatawny with Apple-Celery Salsa

lentil mulligatawny soup
Originally uploaded by jensect.
Leslie - I'm so inspired by your soups, we went and tried a new one last night. this is from the lastest issue of Cooking Light, and it is GOOD! I am pretty sure I just used regular old lentils instead of red lentils, but it tasted pretty good anyway.

This rich, creamy soup will thicken as it cools. Thin with hot water, a tablespoon at a time, to the desired consistency. Lentils provide fiber, folate, and protein, as well as iron. The fresh topping adds vitamin C plus a dose of quercetin.


2/3 cup finely chopped Granny Smith apple
1/4 cup finely chopped celery
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice


3 1/2 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1 cup dried small red lentils
1 cup chopped onion
1 1/2 cups light coconut milk\
3 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon grated peeled fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1. To prepare salsa, combine the first 4 ingredients, cover and chill

2. To prepare soup, combine broth, lentils, and onion in a Dutch oven over medium high heat (I just used my regular soup pan); bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 15 minutes or until lentils are tender. Pour half of lentil mixture in a blender; let stand 5 minutes. Process until smooth. Pour pureed lentil mixture into a bowl. Pour remaining lentil mixture into blender; process until smooth. Add coconut milk, tomato paste, ginger, cumin, and turmeric; process until smooth. Return coconut milk mixture and remaining pureed lentil mixture to pan. Cover and simmer over medium heat 10 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in 1 teaspoon juice, salt, and pepper. Ladle about 1 cup soup into each of 4 bowls; top each serving with 1/4 cup salsa. Yield: 4 servings.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Apple and Parsnip Soup

Originally uploaded by lesliegardner.
I know, it sounds weird, but it is really good! And cheap! And vegetarian! And good for you!

1T butter
1# parsnips
1# apples (I used braeburn)
1 onion, chopped
2t curry pwd
1t cumin
1t coriander
1/2t cardamom
1 clove garlic, crushed
salt & pepper
5C homemade chicken stock or canned reduced soduim chicken broth (I made my own vegetable broth from the peeled skins of all the veggies in the soup!)
2/3C half and half (I used the fat free kind even though I don't understand how it can exist)

In a large saucepan, melt butter over low heat. Add parsnips, apples and onion. Cover and cook 7-10 min.
Add spices, garlic, salt & pepper and cook about 2 min more, stirring constantly.
Add the stock or broth, cover and simmer gently until the parsnips are tender, about 30 min.
Transfer to a blender or food processor in batches and process until smooth. If necessary, add more broth or water. Return to the same saucepan and whisk in the half and half. Heat through over low heat.
Supposed to be garnished with chives and croutons, but who can be bothered? Well, I'm sure the croutons would be a great addition, but I am a total garnish-skipper.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Mediterranean Red Lentil and Spinach Stew

Originally uploaded by lesliegardner.

Wow is this good! It's really rich and kind of sweet. I keep thinking "this needs eggplant", which I'm coming to realize is because it reminds me of Martina's yummy Eggplant Caponata! I served this over Quinoa made with sauteed onions and carrots and tumeric. But not when I finally decided to take a photo.

2T ghee or clarified butter (i used olive oil)
1 small onion, finely chopped
1T minced fresh ginger
1 clove garlic, minced (1...yeah right!)
2t ground cumin
2t paprika
2t ground coriander
1t ground cinnamon
5C water
2C peeled & diced butternut squash
1C dried red lentils
1C diced red bell pepper
1 stalk celery, thinly sliced
1 bunch fresh spinach, washed, stemmed and finely chopped
1/2 C chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 C currants or chopped, pitted dates
3T Bragg Liquid AMinos or natural soy sauce (I used like 2 T of a soy sauce substitute made with molasses and balsamic vinegar)
1t balsamic or apple cider vinegar
1-2 t salt
1/4t cayenne

with all the veggie ends I had left, I made a huge pot of vegetable broth for future soups!

Heat ghee in saucepan over med-high heat. Add onion and saute until well-browned and caramelized, about 10 min. Add ginger and garlic and saute for 2 min. stir in cumin, paprika, coriander and cinnamon. Add water, squash, lentils, red bell pepper amd celery. Simmer uncovered until lentils are tender, about 30 min.

Stir in spinach, cilantro, currants, bragg liquid aminos or soy, vinegar, salt to taste and cayenne. Simmer just long enough for spinach to wilt

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Protein Bars

Originally uploaded by lesliegardner.

I like to eat protien bars. My habit is to eat a little something about every 2 hours and it's great if it's something that makes me happy to eat. But the problem with the ones in the stores is that they cost like $2 a bar and most are loaded with sugar. So I invented these and I'm really happy with them!

1-1/2 C Fresh ground peanut butter
2T Agave nectar
1/2C each of
Flax seeds
Sunflower seeds
Pumpkin seeds (chopped)
Sesame seeds
toasted buckwheat
Wheat germ
2 scoops milk & egg protein powder

mix well. Smoosh into molds. Refrigerate for a while and pop out of mold.

I had pretty good luck keeping one of these in my backpack without it falling apart. The protien powder I used comes from Trader Joes, but you can probably use any kind. The mix of seeds isn't really important - this is just what I had around. If you like, you could totally add dried fruit or even chocolate chips! My goal was to reach the point where it was so full of goodies that the peanut butter was barely holding it together since the PB is so ridiculously caloric. These clock in at about 225 if you get 21 bars out of the recipe above. My molds are a little shy of 1/4 cup. The protein count is actually only about 9g, which is woefully disappointing to me so in the end, they fit the bill of small thing I like to eat but they don't pack the protien punch I had hoped for as a wannabe vegetarian with trouble digesting soy.

Update - I switched out Quinoa for toasted buckwheat - the crunch is just divine!

Thursday, January 05, 2006

chicken and potato bake

Chicken and Potato Bake

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a shallow 2 quart baking dish with olive oil.

whisk together in a small bowl:

3 Tbs of balsamic vinegar
3 Tbs of olive oil
2 Large cloves of garlic minced
1 Tbs of fresh parsley chopped (I skipped this one, and it was fine)
1 Tbs of chopped fresh basil, chervil, or taragon, or 1 1/2 tsp. dried
1 Tbs fresh savory or thyme, or 1 1/2 tsp. dried

1/4 tsp. salt
ground black pepper to taste

Peel and very thinly slice 1lb of potatoes (I didn't peel them). Thinly slice one large sweet onion. (I also put a beet in there because I like how it turns everything pink - I think you could put just about any type of root vegetable in with it)

Arrange half the potatoes in the baking dish. Season well with salt and pepper. Spoon one quarter of the vinaigrette over the potato slices and spread the herbs over the potatoes as evenly as possible. Arrange the onion slices over the potatoes and top with the remaining potatoes. Season and spoon another quarter of the vinaigrette over them, again spreading the herbs out evenly.

Top the potatoes with 4 large chicken breast halves (about 4lbs) boned, but not skinned. Or, you can top the potatoes with one of those whole chickens that has been halved. Bake, uncovered, until the potatoes are tender and the chicken juices run clear when pierced in the thickest part. (aprox. 1 hour for breasts, 1.5 hours for whole chickens). It is YUM!