Thursday, February 09, 2006

Dinner updates

I guessed I haven't tried much new recipes after last week's gathering. For my own record purpose, let me briefly jot down what we had for dinner this week.

I have cooked spinach & feta pasta (again), with cheesedogs on Monday night. (I knew the cheesedogs were unhealthy...but i kind of like cheesedogs....). Ok, I must admit that I was lazy to cook on Monday night. So I resorted to what was the simplest. Both OCT and I disagreed with Feta Cheese. So bye bye Feta, I think I wouldn't have you in my grocery basket anytime soon.

Tuesday, we invited Ade over for dinner. I tried the meatloaf recipe that had received rave reviews from other cooks. I thought it was nice, despite the fact that it wasn't firm, as the picture of the recipe showed. You know, sometime you followed the instructions to a T, and got the taste exactly as it was described, but it just looked quite different from what was featured in the magazine. Well, since we didn't see Ade as an outsider, or guest, so I guessed that's ok. (I hope) We paired that with stirfry cabbage, tofu with mushroom and plain rice. Quite a weird combination, as meatloaf didn't exactly fit in a Chinese dinner. But this was just the kind of thing I liked to do. "Rojak" meal, i called it. It's not exactly western or chinese.

Wednesday night, we had Spaghetti with Vodka sauce, sauteed spinach with garlic, carrot with balsamic vinaigrette and the leftover meatloaf. As usual OCT protested the distinct smell of alcohol, but admitted that he couldn't detect the slightest taste of alcohol in his spaghetti.

Left:Spaghetti with Vodka Sauce Right: scones as my lunch

I must include the meatloaf recipe here, because i really like it and I hope you will try it too!

Meatloaf 101
4 slices white bread, torn into pieces
1 3/4 pounds ground beef
3/4 pound ground pork
1 medium yellow onion, peeled and cut into eighths
2 cloves garlic
2 stalks celery, cut into 2-inch pieces
2 carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
1/2 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 large egg
3/4 cup ketchup
4 teaspoons dry mustard
1 tablespoon coarse salt
2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons packed light-brown sugar

1. Preheat oven to 400°. In the bowl of a food processor, pulse bread until fine crumbs form. Transfer to a medium bowl; add ground beef and ground pork. ( I only used ground beef)
2. Place onion, garlic, celery, carrots, and parsley in food processor; pulse until finely chopped. Add to beef mixture; combine using your hands. Add egg, 1/2 cup ketchup, 2 teaspoons dry mustard, salt, and pepper; combine thoroughly, using your hands. Place in an 8 1/2-by-4 1/2-by-2 1/2-inch loaf pan. (I cut everything down, painstakingly with a knife. How I wished I have a food processor!!! Oh, and I used a 9" aluminium disposable loaf pan)
3. In a small bowl, combine the remaining 1/4 cup ketchup and 2 teaspoons dry mustard, and the brown sugar; stir until smooth. (I used normal yellow mustard)
4. Brush mixture over top of the meat loaf. Place the pan on a baking sheet to catch drippings, and transfer to oven. Bake until a meat thermometer inserted in the center reaches 160°, about 1 1/2 hours. (If the top of the meat loaf gets too dark, cover with foil and continue baking.) Let meat loaf stand 15 minutes before slicing. ( I second guessed the doneness because I don't have a meat thermometer!)

Serves 8-10 people (No kidding!It was really filling)

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