Thursday, February 24, 2011

Barbecue Turkey Meat Loaf

Barbecue Turkey Meatloaf

1 medium onion, finely chopped (9.2 to 10.0 ounces)
1 red bell pepper, finely chopped (5.9 to 6.9 ounces)
2 teaspoons ancho chili powder
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons dried thyme
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/3 cup barbecue sauce (3.4 ounces) and a separate 1/3 cup barbecue sauce (3.4 ounces)
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard (0.4 ounce)
Two 1.25-pound packages ground lean turkey
3/4 cup homemade 100% whole-grain breadcrumbs (1.7 ounces) (Procedure to follow)
2 large eggs, beaten (3.6 ounces)

Heat a large skillet on medium-low heat until hot. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil and add the onions and red bell peppers. Continue to saute, stirring occasionally, until soft and dry, about 13 to 15 minutes. Add the chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, oregano, thyme, coriander, cumin, salt and pepper. Cook and stir until fragrant, about 10 seconds. Remove from heat and sir in 1/3 cup barbecue sauce and Dijon mustard. Mixture will be thick. Set aside to cool.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Position oven rack to the center of
the oven.

In a very large mixing bowl, combine the ground turkey, breadcrumbs, onion mixture and eggs. Mix until well combined. Transfer to a shallow rimmed baking sheet and shape into a loaf. Spread the entire loaf with the remaining 1/3 cup barbecue sauce.

Bake in oven for 1 hour, 15 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter and cut into slices. Serve with additional barbecue sauce, if desired.

Yield 6 to 8 servings

Homemade 100% whole-grain breadcrumbs: Use any 100% multi-grain, whole-grain or whole wheat bread of your choice, but make sure it is 100%. Toast slices in the toaster until toasty browned. Cool completely. Sometimes I let it air dry on a rack overnight. Cut into cubes and place into the food processor. Process until fine crumbs. It may take several pulses in the beginning and then I let it run continuously until I get fine crumbs (2 to 3 minutes), depending on the type of bread you are using. I like to use Kirkland's brand 100% multi-grain bread (Kirkland is a product of Costco).

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Chicken-Mushroom-Spinach Quesadillas

Chicken-Mushroom-Spinach Quesadillas
Adapted from Ellie Krieger

I happen to have an entire rotisserie chicken in my refrigerator. Quesadillas are one of the good ways to use up leftover cooked chicken meat. If you happen to run out of tortillas before the filling is used up, the filling will taste great with orzo pasta, brown rice, or stuff in a pita bread. This recipe also works with leftover turkey meat.

1 pound Cremini mushrooms, thickly sliced
1/4 teaspoon salt and a separate 1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large red onion, finely chopped, about 2 cups (7.0 ounces)
3 large cloves garlic, finely minced (0.6 ounce)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground ancho chili powder

1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle chili powder (optional)
2 teaspoons dried oregano
4 cups packed baby spinach leaves (6 ounces)
Two cooked, skinless and boneless chicken breast halves, diced into bite-size pieces, about 4 cups (13.7 ounces)
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
Handful of cilantro, chopped (0.5 to 0.6 ounce)
Two 16-ounce package Guerrero brand 100% whole-wheat flour tortillas (7-inch size)

One 8-ounce package 2% reduced fat shredded Mexican-Style Four Cheese
Trader Joe's brand Double Roasted Salsa or any salsa of your choice
Homemade guacamole

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat until hot, but not smoking. Add about 1 tablespoon of olive oil into the skillet. Add the mushrooms and continue to cook on medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until browned and all liquid released have evaporated, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add 1/4 teaspoon salt and transfer to a dish. Set aside.

Using the same skillet, add another tablespoon of olive oil to the skillet. Add the onions and garlic. Continue to cook on medium-high heat until onions starts to turn brown. Reduce heat to medium and add the cumin, chili powder, and oregano. Continue to cook and stir for about 10 seconds or until fragrant. Add the spinach and chicken breast and continue to cook, stirring frequently until spinach is wilted, about 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the mushroom, salt and gound black pepper. Remove from heat and stir in the cilantro. Set aside. You can prepare up to this point. Let the filling cool completely, transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate until ready to use.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat with about 1 teaspoon of olive oil. Meanwhile, lay 1 tortilla on a flat work surface and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons cheese. Evenly distribute a heaping 1/2 cup of filling on top of cheese. Sprinkle with another 2 tablespoons cheese. Top with another tortilla. Repeat to make more quesadillas.

When skillet is hot, carefully transfer one quesadilla to the skillet. Cook on first side for about 2 to 3 minutes or until lightly browned. You can cover the tortilla with a lid just big enough to cover the quesadilla by itself (not necessary to have the lid fit perfectly to cover the skillet). Carefully turn the quesadilla over to cook the other side, adding another teaspoon of olive oil. Cook for another 2 to 3 minutes or until lightly browned (do not need to cover with a lid on the second side). Transfer to a flat plate or a cutting board. Repeat cooking process to cook the other quesadillas.

Cut quesadillas into fourths and serve with guacamole and salsa. Accompanied quesadillas with Mexican Red Cabbage Slaw posted

Yield 7 quesadillas

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Cuban-Style Turkey Picadillo

Cuban-Style Turkey Picadillo

The Cuban-Style Picadillo is normally made with ground beef. Ground turkey is used in place of the ground beef makes this dish a lot healthier. This is an easy and delicious dish to be eaten served over brown rice.

Two 1.25-pound packages of lean ground turkey
1 medium onion, finely chopped (9.6 ounces)
1 large red bell pepper, seeded, deveined and finely chopped (7.6 ounces)
1 large green bell pepper, seeded, deveined and finely chopped (7.3 ounces)
3 large cloves garlic, finely minced (0.4 ounce)
1-3/4 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons dried oregano
3/4 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 dried bay leaves
1-3/4 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
One 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes, hand-crushed
2 tablespoons tomato paste (1.0 ounce)
1/2 cup pimiento-stuffed green olives, rinsed and thinly sliced (2.8 ounces)
2 tablespoons capers, rinsed and coarsely chopped (1.0 ounce)
1/2 cup chopped cilantro (0.7 ounce)

Heat a 12-inch deep skillet over high heat until very hot, but not smoking. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil and the ground turkey. Continue to cook on high heat, breaking up turkey meat, until no longer pink. Transfer to a colander and set aside.

Using the same skillet, heat skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the skillet. Add the onions, red and green bell peppers, garlic and 2 tablespoons of cilantro. Continue to cook until soft and dry, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. If too much liquid is being released, increase heat to high until liquid has evaporated; then reduce heat back to medium-high heat. When the vegetables are soft and dry, add the ground turkey back to the pan. Continue to cook for another minute. Add the cumin, oregano, coriander, cinnamon, bay leaves, salt and pepper. Continue to cook for another minute or until fragrant. Stir in the hand-crushed diced tomatoes and tomato paste. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Stir in the Spanish olives and capers. Continue to cook, covered, for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the remainder of the cilantro and remove from heat. Serve over hot cooked brown rice.

Yields 6 to 8 servings

NOTE: IF you have leftover picadillo for another meal, I like to use leftover picadillo for quesadillas using 100% whole-wheat flour tortillas. Spread some refried beans on one tortilla, top with about 1/2 cup picadillo, top with 2 tablespoons 2% milk reduced-fat Mexican blend or Monterey Jack cheese, top with another tortilla and pan-fry in very lightly oiled nonstick skillet for about 2-3 minutes per side over medium heat until browned. Cut into fourths and serve with salsa and guacamole.