Back in the Kitchen

During Art Week, gone but not forgotten, I do little to no cooking. We’re just not home long enough to even heat water. This past week, it was back to the stove and home-cooked meals. Two stood out. I cut out the recipe for Miso Scampi Shrimp from some newspaper long ago. This was the first time to make it. The stained page protector holding the recipe for Veggie-Packed Meat Loaf* reveals that this was a return recipe. Both are fairly intensive, with lots of ingredients and steps, not my usual cooking style. Both were really tasty.

*If you enjoy meatloaf see two posts earlier this year for Surprise Meatloaf, 4-24-22, and Beef Bourguinon Meatloaf, 8-29-22.

Veggie-Packed Meat Loaf.* Lots of ingredients make this a really tasty dish. Start by roasting three red peppers. When done, chop to be added later. I usually skip this step and simply chop raw peppers to include. Next, chop 8 oz of cremini mushrooms, pulse in a food processor 10 times. Then add 1 chopped red onion into a heated skillet with some oil, sauté until tender, add 4 minced garlic cloves, add the mushrooms and sauté about 10 minutes. Add to the peppers (roasted or raw).

*I know it’s vogue today to “hide” vegetables in other dishes to get especially vegetable averse children to eat what’s good for them. Our daughter has never had a problem this way. We just enjoy this for as a different and delicious meatloaf.

Back to the food processor; combine 1 can of rinsed chickpeas and ¾ cup of thawed frozen peas. Pulse about 10 times. Add to the mushroom, etc. mixture. Add 2 tbsp fresh basil, ½ tsp salt, ½ cup toasted roasted walnuts (adds crunch), ¼ cup bulgur (or bread crumbs, oatmeal, etc), 2 tsp Dijon mustard, ½ tsp black pepper, 8 ounces ground beef (actually, I used a pound of beef with a pound of ground turkey), 1 large egg, beaten. Mix all together until everything is incorporated. Put mixture into a 9 x 5 loaf pan (I chose to make a free-form mound).* Bake at 375 for 40 minutes. Sprinkle with chopped basil.

*I also cut some red potatoes in half and placed them cut-side down around the loaf to roast with it.

Note: This was a really big meatloaf that gave us several days of left-overs. Finally, I cooked a pot of nice pasta. In my skillet, I crumbled several slices of the meat and heated it thoroughly. I added some sauted green onions to the meat. When the pasta was nearly done, I slowly added about a cup of the starchy pasta water to the meat. It made a nice meal.

Miso Shrimp Scampi. I suspect from the yellowed appearance of this recipe in my recipe keeper, that it’s from an Oklahoman newspaper, where we lived before moving here. Finally the evening came to excavate and try it.

Start with one pound of medium, shelled shrimp. Place in a bowl with 2 tsp cornstarch and 2 tbsp + 2 tsp cold water. Make the miso sauce next: whisk together 1 cup brown miso, ½ cup sugar, ¾ cup mirin, 1/3 cup sake. Cook the mixture for 4-5 minutes, stirring constantly. Add ¼ cup lemon juice and cook another 8 minutes. Turn off heat. If you want a spicy dish (add 1-2 tsp red pepper flakes).

Back to the shrimp. Cook shrimp in a skillet with oil about 1 minute. Don’t move them so they will brown. Add 1 ½ tbsp. mince garlic, 2 tbsp minced ginger, the white part of 3 scallions chopped. Cook very briefly. Add the miso sauce reduce heat to medium-low and cook just 1 minute. Garnish with the green part of the scallions, chopped.

Served with a pasta I found at Ross Dress For Less, imagine that!

Two delicious meals.

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