Saturday, March 04, 2006

A Taste of Texas - Meatloaf, Fried Okra, and Turnip Greens, plus an Australian Dessert

Heather at Eating for One is hosting an event called Meatloaf Madness this month, and I decided to try my usual meatloaf recipe in muffin tins instead of a loaf pan. This is another one of my recipes that’s influenced by my mother. I use my own recipe for the meat part, and then Mother’s topping, made up of a sweetened ketchup mixture. Sometimes DH likes barbecue sauce on it instead, but this time we’re having Mother’s topping.

Cyndi’s Meatloaf Muffins

3/4 lb. lean ground beef
2 slices soft whole wheat bread, torn into very small pieces
3 T milk
2 T finely minced onion
1 egg, lightly beaten or 1/4 c Eggbeaters
2 t Worcestershire sauce
1/2 t rubbed sage
1/8 t ground pepper
1/3 c ketchup
1 T Splenda Brown Sugar blend
1 t yellow mustard

Preheat oven to 400˚. In a large bowl, combine ground beef, bread, milk, onion, egg, Worcestershire sauce, sage, and pepper. Divide into equal portions in 6 muffin cups. Bake 15 minutes. In a small bowl, combine ketchup, Splenda Brown Sugar blend, and mustard. Spoon evenly onto each “muffin.” Bake another 10 minutes. Makes 6 (3-4 servings)

With our meatloaf, we had fried okra and turnip greens. I’ve posted before about how I truly love turnip greens, but I have to admit that I’ve only eaten canned ones. After seeing a great post on turnip greens by Susan of Farmgirl Fare, I decided to try some fresh turnip greens to go with my okra. (Susan’s wonderful post is here) She states, “Turnip greens are, in fact, one of The World’s Healthiest Foods . Turnip bulbs are a good source of vitamin C and have two to three grams of fiber per serving. They also contain the potent phytochemical sulforaphane , which has been shown to protect against cancer, especially breast cancer.” In looking around for ways to fix the greens, I decided to keep it simple. First, I knew they had to be washed thoroughly, so I filled up one side of my sink with cold water and 1/4 cup of salt and swished them around a few minutes. (The salt helps to dislodge any sand that’s still stuck to the greens). Then I did this again in the other side of the sink. My greens were then ready to cook.

Turnip Greens

2 c water
1 large bunch turnip greens, thoroughly washed and then chopped coarsely
1 slice bacon, cut in 1/2” pieces (or you could use 1/4 cup diced salt pork)

Put water in a large s tockpot. Add the turnip greens and bacon, and bring to a boil. Lower heat, cover, and simmer about 2 hours, checking occasionally to make sure water hasn’t boiled off. Add water if necessary. Salt to taste. Serves 2

Now for dessert. Niki of Esurientes made some fantastic dessert bars called Raspberry and Coconut Slice.
Her recipe can be found here. I looked a the enticing photo, did an inventory of my ingrdients, and decided I’d go to an adaptation. I switched a few things, like whole-wheat flour instead of all-purpose, Splenda for some of the sugar, and mixed berries instead of raspberries. I brought out my trusty former coffee grinder and ground the almonds first for the crust, then the sugar for the caster sugar. This was a very easy recipe to make, and now it’s lower in sugar than Niki made hers. And it tastes wonderful!

Mixed Berry and Coconut Slice

2 1/4 cups white whole-wheat flour
3 tablespoons ground almonds
3/4 c Splenda, divided
1/2 cups caster sugar*
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, chilled
1/2 t ground nutmeg
1/2 t baking powder
4 eggs
1 t vanilla extract
1 T lemon juice
2 1/2 cups fresh or frozen mixed berries (I used the triple berry blend of raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries from Costco)
1 cup dessicated coconut (this is unsweetened-I purchase mine at the local vegetable market)
Preheat the oven to 350˚. Grease a 12 x 8" baking dish and line with parchment paper.
Sift 1 3/4 cups flour into a bowl. Add the ground almonds and 1/4 cup of the Splenda and stir to combine. Rub the butter into the flour with your fingertips until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Press the mixture into the pan and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until golden. Reduce the oven to 300˚.
Sift the nutmeg, baking powder and the remaining flour into a bowl.
In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs, vanilla and remaining sugar with electric beaters for 4 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Fold in the flour with a large spoon. Stir in the lemon juice, raspberries and coconut and pour over the base.
Bake for ~1 hour, or until golden and firm. Chill in the pan, then cut into pieces. Makes 24 pieces.

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Heather said...

I am so glad I found your site. I have been spending quite a bit of time browsing and now I want to get cooking.
Thanks for the submission to Meatloaf Madness!!

Niki said...

Wow - how inspiring to see your modification to the raspberry slice. I think yours is probably a better version of the recipe, and I think I'll turn to yours when I want to make it again!