Or at least it WAS for dinner the other night 🙂
We’ve been cooking a lot more at Dave’s lately, and it’s been fun. A little messy, and a few mishaps, but totally fun. We like to change it up a little bit, well as much as we can, having to stick to gluten free and sometimes nut free because of his youngest son, N.
We’ve often made meatloaf, and Dave loves the way we make it. Usually stuffed with a cheesy center, but this time I went a different direction. I followed a recipe a gluten free friend had shared this time last year. I had made it before, adapting to my personal tastes and it turned out well. So the other night I went a little different as well and Dave proclaimed as we were devouring the meatloaf that “You MUST remember how you made this, the type of cheese you used and everything else. This is the BEST meatloaf I’ve ever eaten and the best you’ve ever made” We also tried a recipe my friend Kathy made on New Years Eve of stuffed sweet baby peppers that she knew I could eat. They were bite-sized little flavor bombs lol so I tried to re-create them. I admit I didn’t like the way they looked while cooking in the oven, but they tasted amazeballs.
Gluten Free Meatloaf
- 1 lb 90% lean ground beef
- ½ tsps of salt
- 1 tsp Goya Adobo
- ½ tsp freshly ground cracked pepper
- 1 egg
- 1 medium Vidalia onion, minced
- 1 cup of gluten free breadcrumbs
- A little butter
- 1 tsp red chile pepper flakes or powder
- ½ tsp oregano
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup Sweet Baby Rays hickory & brown sugar bbq sauce + 1 tbs for topping.
- 1 tsp Worcestershire (The Worcestershire may contain gluten… be careful to check and omit if desired)
- 1 cup shredded Kraft Mexican blend cheese
- 1/2 cup shredded Cabbot Seriously Sharp Cheddar cheese
Mix cheeses together and set aside 1/4 of a cup for topping
- Preheat the oven to 350
- Heat the butter in a skillet over low/medium heat and saute onion until translucent. Set aside.
- In a bowl, mix all the ingredients, minus the bbq sauce and cheese that is reserved for topping.
- Form the mixture into a loaf shape and place on parchment lined baking sheet. (I don’t like using a loaf pan because depending on what grade meat you use, there can be way too much oil).
- Place the meatloaf into the preheated oven, and for the last 10 min cover the top of meatloaf with reserved bbq sauce and cheese. Continue cooking until you reach 150 degrees on an instant read thermometer in the deepest interior of the loaf (about 50 min)
Oven times and temperatures can vary so please follow cooking instructions carefully.
Stuffed Baby Peppers
- Vegetable oil cooking spray
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
- 3/4 cup ricotta cheese
- 1/3 cup grated Parmesan
- 1/2 cup frozen petite peas, thawed
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 24 (2 to 3-inch long) sweet baby pepper
- Place an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Spray a baking sheet with vegetable oil cooking spray and set aside.
- In a medium skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until translucent and soft, about 5 minutes. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes.
- Combine the onion, cheeses, and thawed peas, and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Using a paring knife, cut 1/2-inch from the stem-end of the peppers. Remove the seeds and veins. Using a small dessert spoon,(chopsticks, or seafood spoon) and fill each pepper with the mixture.
- Place the filled peppers on the prepared baking sheet and bake for 15 to 18 minutes until the peppers begin to soften. Remove from the oven and cool for 10 minutes before serving.
*Cooking tip: I didn’t have a small dessert spoon on hand only a normal dinnerware teaspoon which I found to be too big for stuffing the small peppers. Using chopsticks, or even a small seafood spoon/fork helped fill the peppers.
I admit, they don’t look all that pretty, but like I said before they sure tasted amazing. The best part was cooking together. We have fun, get on each others nerves, ok he kinda gets on mine sometimes because I’ve never had a boyfriend who wanted to cook together and as much fun as it is because we can do it together it takes some getting used to. BUT I wouldn’t change it for the world.
It’s brought us closer together and if I could impart some relationship wisdom, I suggest cooking with your significant other once in a while. Even if you have specific ways of doing things, you can learn from each other and about each other. Plus who doesn’t like getting messy in the kitchen with your man/woman? 😉