Tuesdays With Mama

June 4, 2009 at 8:15 pm Leave a comment

Blog Food I  Tuesday nights are family night at our dinner table, the night my brother-in-law stops by to visit my mother-in-law (who lives on the lower walkout level of our suburban Minneapolis rambler), and they both climb the stairs at 6:30 p.m. to join us for supper.  Simple Turkey Meatloaf Patties make frequent guest appearances at these family gatherings because everyone likes them and they meet this group’s varied dietary needs – low carbohydrate count, no exotic spices.  To keep things interesting, I try to vary the accompaniments as much as possible.

Tonight, a less carb-conscious assemblage of Puréed Carrots, Brussels Sprouts with Golden Raisins and Toasted Pine Nuts, and Corn Bran Muffins. Then, depending on your dietary needs, a nice bowl of sliced fresh peaches or a Peeled Peach Half topped with a modest Scoop of Slow-Churned Butter Pecan Ice Cream.  We are sold on this new method of turning out reduced fat (and reduced calorie) ice cream with no reduction in taste.  And if you aren’t offended by the gilding of a lily, the creamy butter pecan is a nice complement to the long-awaited first fresh peaches of the season.


These recipe amounts served four generously, with a few leftover patties.

For the meatloaf patties, I buy the diabetic’s dream cracker, the GG Scandinavian Bran Crispbread™ (one slice = 16 calories, 0 grams of fat, and 3 grams carbohydrate – with a subtractable dietary fiber count of 3 grams) by the case via an online source, and then usually keep on hand in an airtight container a batch of crumbs that I’ve whirred to a fine pulp in my Vita-Mix™ blender.  Well-crushed whole wheat saltines work very well here, too.

For seven patties, mix and blend well:

2-1/2# of lean ground turkey           1/4 small onion grated on a microplane (or 1tsp onion powder, in a pinch)

½C cracker crumbs                              2 eggs and 2TB soy sauce whisked together 

Using ½C per, form meat into 4” patties and set over medium-low heat in a non-stick frying pan.  Cook until golden brown (about 7 minutes) then turn and brown on second side.  To prepare ahead, you can undercook them a bit and then re-warm them next to the muffins.  (See below.)

For the purée, peel, wash, and cut into 1” chunks, 8 large carrots and put them in a saucepan with enough water to cover.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and cook for 20-25 minutes, or until tender to a paring knife tip.  Drain carrots and place in blender or food processor along with ½ C chicken stock.  Whir until creamy.  Return to cooking pot and keep warm over low heat.

Next prepare 3C of fresh Brussels sprouts by trimming off end of the stem, letting the outermost leaves fall away.  Cut a shallow x into the remaining stem and soak sprouts in cold water in a saucepan until ready to cook.  Fifteen minutes before serving time, replace the soaking water with enough fresh water to cover vegetables and bring the water to a boil.  Reduce heat and keep at a lively simmer for 10-12 minutes, or until they test done.

Meanwhile, in a small non-stick skillet, sauté 2TB minced shallots in 1tsp olive oil over medium-low heat for 7-8 minutes, stirring frequently, until golden brown.  Deglaze pan with 1TB balsamic vinegar and 1TB white wine; toss in 1TB (packed) golden raisins and continue to cook sauce over low heat for another 4-5 minutes.  To serve, drain sprouts well, then toss in pan with prepared sauce.  Once in serving bowl, sprinkle with 2TB toasted pine nuts.

The muffins were a real hit with my clan; they have just a tiny hint of sweetness and a wonderful texture, and leftovers make a great breakfast treat with a chunk of queso fresco.  Line up:

1-1/2 C bran cereal         1-1/2 C skim or 1% milk        1/2 C flour       3/4 C yellow corn meal       2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt                          2 TB sugar                                   2 eggs                2 TB canola oil

Start by pulsing the bran cereal in your blender or food processor until it is close to cornmeal consistency.  Place in a medium bowl, cover with milk, and stir.  In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt, and sugar.  In a small bowl whisk eggs with canola oil, then stir into cereal mixture.  Now blend the cereal mixture into the dry ingredients, stirring just until well combined.  Pour into 12 greased muffin cups and bake at 400° for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Remove from pan immediately and cool on wire racks or plop right into the serving basket.

This menu has plenty of room for pre-prep, so it’s a nice do-ahead option for busy days.


Entry filed under: Musings of a Midwestern Foodie. Tags: , , , , , , .

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