Here is a quick dinner that everyone loves, my Green Chile Meat Loaf. My hubby actually bought the ground turkey for this and asked me to make it for him. You know it’s good when they ask for it! It’s so easy to make, the prep takes about 15 minutes. You can put it in the oven and get some side dishes ready and have everything on the table with plenty of time to sit down and relax while you watch The Bachelorette. Well, that’s my plan anyway! See my weekly recap of the show at http://californiamomblogs.com/2012/07/10/the-bachelorette-weekly-recap/
I eyeball the seasoning measurements as follows:
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon dried oregano (rub in palm of your hand as you put it in to release the flavor)
3/4 cup dried Italian bread crumbs
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup chopped green onion (or white onion)
2-3 cloves of garlic, chopped
5-6 green chiles, chopped
1 1/2 pounds ground turkey breast
Mix the dry ingredients; bread crumbs, chopped green onion, chopped garlic, oregano, salt, pepper, crushed red pepper, white pepper, black pepper. . . just use your favorites to suit your taste. . . with a beaten egg and a half a cup of milk.
Chop up some whole green chiles. I use canned whole chiles when I can’t get the fresh roasted green chiles from New Mexico. They are very mild and just add a bit of tangy flavor to the meatloaf. I never get chopped canned green chile because I believe the more processed the chile, the less heat. My family likes the slow burning, melt in your mouth, heat from the New Mexico chile.
I chop the chiles coarse and throw them in the mix of ingredients.
With a gloved (or very clean hand) mix the ground turkey in with the rest of the ingredients. I always mix this with my bare hand. I need to feel the consistency of the meat. At this point, I add more bread crumbs or milk based on how it feels to me. Over the years, I have learned how my family likes the meat loaf. I stop mixing when it just barely looks and feels like a paste. It is moist, but not runny. The wetness matters when using a lean meat like ground turkey. When I use ground beef or pork, I will make the mixture a little dry because the juices of the meat will moisten the meatloaf when cooking.
I “pour” the concoction into the baking pan and shape into a loaf. Pop in the oven at 350° for one hour.
Yum! The outside looks crunchy and the juices are running clear. It’s ready! But don’t slice yet, let it sit for about 10 more minutes. If you wait, the slices will not crumble when you slice them.
Tip: try to make the slices thin or cut some ahead of time for left overs. You will want a meatloaf sandwich tomorrow for sure!
Serve with some rice or mashed potatoes and gravy and some veggies or a salad.
Note: With green chile as an ingredient, I usually add some small chunks of jack cheese into the mix. It is so tangy and gooey that I don’t make a sauce or ketchup to pour over the meat. It really doesn’t need it!