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The Olympics are in full swing here in Vancouver. Every morning when I go downtown to my place of work, I am amazed at all the people in the streets, at the lines for the various pavilions. It’s an exciting time for the city. You can feel it in the air. But my life is so hectic that I haven’t yet had a chance to partake in the festivities. A part of me doesn’t really care, but another part wonders if I’ll be sorry later. To be perfectly honest, sports don’t interest me all that much and the Olympic Games, whether summer or winter, hardly at all.

If I’m drawn to anything about the Games in Vancouver, it’s the food. There are some pavilions that I definitely want to check out. I want to see what the world is cooking. And I plan on going to the French Quarter on Granville Island very soon.

In the meantime, I’ve made turkey.

Today is one of those days when I actually have a little time to myself and I chose to spend some of it in the kitchen, whipping up some dishes to tide me through the week. A lot of it will go into the freezer, as do a lot of the things I cook. Cooking in batches makes my life a lot easier.

I love having slices of this turkey meatloaf on hand for dinner, or tucking it between a couple of slices of bread for a delicious sandwich at lunch. For all its leanness, it’s surprisingly juicy. Plus it’s so easy to put together.

This recipe is adapted from Chef Michael Smith from the Food Network in Canada. His recipes are accessible and down-to-earth yet full of robust flavors.

Michael Smith’s Turkey Meatloaf

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 onions, peeled and sliced

4 garlic cloves, minced

8 ounces button mushrooms, cleaned and chopped

2 pounds of ground turkey

1/2 cup milk

1 cup breadcrumbs

2 eggs

1 can (156 ml) tomato paste

a few dashes Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon dried thyme or oregano

salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

1) Preheat oven to 350F.

2) Saute oil and onion in a skillet over medium-high heat until they are golden brown. Add the garlic and mushrooms and continue sauteing until the liquid has evaporated and the mushrooms are lightly browned.

3) Mix the turkey, milk, breadcrumbs, egg, tomato paste and Worcestershire sauce, thyme and mushroom mixture in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper

4) Press the mixture into a loaf pan or an 8×8 baking dish. Bake until firm and lightly browned on top. An instant read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meatloaf should read 165 degrees.

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QUOTE

"Noncooks think it's silly to invest two hours' work in two minutes' enjoyment; but if cooking is evanescent, so is the ballet." -Julia Child

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Photos and text copyright 2009 by Darina Kopcok
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