Frozen Assets


The Turkey Meatloaf Twins

I haven’t tended to use a lot of ground turkey in recipes because I find it usually ends up too dry and tasteless.  But I learned a wonderful little secret to making moist turkey loaves and meatballs … just add grated zucchini to the mixture!  The high water content of the zucchini keeps the meat moist.  An amazingly simple solution to a common problem.  🙂

A couple tips:  Be sure to handle the turkey meat mixture gently, it’s best to mix it together with your hands, don’t overmix, and don’t have big pieces of onion in the mixture or it’ll tend to break apart easily.

You can also use this same recipe to make meatballs.  You do everything the same except you only bake the meatballs for 30 minutes at 350 rather than for an hour.  If you need more ideas for serving turkey meatballs, you can find some sauce recipes and meatball ideas at the bottom of this post:  Meatball Mania

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The Turkey Meatloaf Twins
  • 2 lb. ground turkey
  • 1 cup oats (gluten-free if needed)
  • 1 cup finely diced onion
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, snipped
  • 1 cup grated zucchini
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp thyme
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
In a large mixing bowl, gently but thoroughly combine first seven ingredients (everything except for the eggs and spices).  In a separate smaller bowl, combine eggs, garlic, thyme, salt and pepper.  Mix the egg and spice mixture into the meat mixture.  In a lightly greased 9″x13″ baking pan, form meatloaf mixture into two loaf shapes. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 1 hour.
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Makes great leftovers, yummy sandwiches, and freezes well, too.
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To freeze, cool completely in the refrigerator.  Wrap in foil; label; and freeze.  Thaw in the fridge overnight.  Can be served cold or reheated in the microwave for an easy meal on a busy day.
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~Debi


Never a dull moment around our house …

Over the past few years people in our home have developed various food allergies, and have required special diets for things like Celiac, etc.  Just when I thought things couldn’t get any more complicated food-wise, my son and I both developed an inability to digest meats (beef for me, anything flesh-related for him).  Crazy.

So now in order to make a meal to feed all four of us at the same time, it needs to meet the following criteria:

  • Gluten-free (essentially only rice noodles and rice bread)
  • Sugar-free (no honey or fructose, either)
  • Aspartame-free (no Nutrasweet)
  • Vegetarian (or at least beef-free, but then my son needs something else to eat)
  • Peanut-free
  • Mushroom-free (including mushroom soup)
  • Carrot-free
  • Apple-free
  • Light on the eggs (can be an ingredient, but not the main thing such as in omelettes or scrambled eggs)
  • Mint-free (not usually much of an issue except with teas and desserts)
  • Green tea – free

I think that’s all. LOL! 😎

I’ve decided to try to figure out a list of menus I can prepare that we can all eat so I’m not preparing separate meals for our various special diets.  Sadly, doing bulk freezer meal cooking has sort of fallen by the wayside as one after another of our regular recipes have bit-the-dust.

So, any suggestions for cheap eats that meet the above requirements?  And of course freezer-friendly recipes and ideas would be ideal!  🙂



“Use-It-Up” Quiche Recipe

Basic “Use-It-Up” Quiche Recipe
(Serves 6)

You can use almost any leftover vegetable or meat in this recipe. If you have eggs, milk, rice and cheese, you can practically clean out your fridge right into your quiche pan. I always add the cheese last when making this quiche. The cheese makes a beautiful mellow-brown crust on the top. I usually add a bit of chopped onion to my quiches for flavor, and broccoli makes an especially nice vegetable quiche.  If you leave out the soy sauce in the crust (or use gluten-free soy sauce), this is gluten-free, too.  🙂

This recipe is adapted with permission from my book, Frozen Assets: Cook for a Day, Eat for a Month.

Crust Ingredients:

  • 2 cups rice, cooked (white or brown)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tsp soy sauce

Filling Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb any leftover vegetable, chopped (single vegetable or a mix)
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups milk, or light cream
  • 1 cup cheese, grated (your choice: Swiss, Cheddar, Jack, etc.)
  • 1/2 tsp salt (optional)
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
  • Dash nutmeg, or ground mace

Crust Directions:

  1. Mix together cooked rice, egg and soy sauce.
  2. Spread evenly to cover well- buttered quiche pan or pie plate.
  3. Bake rice crust at 350 F for 10 minutes.
  4. Remove from oven.

Filling Directions:

  1. Place chopped vegetable in bottom of crust.
  2. Mix together: eggs, milk, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Pour over broccoli.
  3. Top with grated cheese. Bake at 350 F for 45 minutes, or until set.
  4. Remove from oven, and let sit ten minutes before slicing, if serving fresh; or wrap pie pan, label and freeze.
  5. Quiche can be served cold after thawing for a yummy hot weather treat; or heat the thawed quiche at 350 F for 20 minutes.

Enjoy!

~Debi


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Cheesecake Cupcakes (sugar-free/gluten-free)

This recipe wasn’t invented by Kelsey (she’s my oldest daughter), but I named it after her because I make it for her birthday. 🙂

Kelsey’s “Happy Birthday” Cheesecake Cupcakes
(sugar-free/gluten-free)

For cupcakes:

  • 3 – 8oz packages of cream cheese
  • 1 cup of Splenda
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla

Filling:

  • 8oz sour cream
  • 2 Tbsp Splenda
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla

 

Bring cream cheese to room temperature. Place cream cheese in a large mixing bowl and add one egg at a time beating with the low speed on an electric mixer after each addition. Slowly add Splenda and vanilla.

Pour batter (it will be thin) into paper cupcake liners about 1/8 inch from the top.

Bake in a preheated 300 degree oven for 30 to 35 minutes until large cracks appear on the top of the cupcakes.

Remove from oven and cool for 5 minutes. They will appear to grow greatly, but after they cool, they’ll have a shallow indentation in the center.

While they’re cooling, prepare the filling. For the filling, in a small bowl, stir the Splenda and vanilla into the sour cream. Drop a teaspoon of filling onto the top of each cupcake. Return to oven for 15 minutes.

Cool and keep refrigerated. These can also be frozen (wrap individually). For toppings, spoon on any fruit, berries or sugar-free/gluten-free sauce of your choice.

The last time I made this, I didn’t use the filling and substituted lemon extract for the vanilla (we were out of vanilla). Made a sauce out of frozen mixed berries (blueberries, strawberries and raspberries). It was delicious!