Monday, February 18, 2013

Turkey Meatloaf w/ Spicy Balsamic Glaze

This isn't the first turkey meatloaf recipe I've written.  Last year I did a Mini-Meatloaf recipe which was a huge hit!  I wrote it for "the single cook" because I read that the individual meatloaves could be frozen and re-heated later.  But I ended up getting more messages and tweets from parents who loved the idea of making the mini-meatloaves for their kids which was great!  

I mentioned in the post that I used my Mom's turkey meatloaf recipe and it came out well but there was one problem.  A problem that plagues most dishes made with ground turkey meat: it was a bit too dry.   Straight from the oven, the mini-meatloaves were perfect but when I went to reheat them, they were kind of tough.

With all of this in mind, I sat down last week to write a new turkey meatloaf recipe, for the single cook, that was moist and delicious. I came across lots of ideas for keeping the meatloaf moist.  Grate in a zucchini. Use oats instead of bread crumbs. And then there was my favorite: mix in a chipotle pepper and some adobo sauce.

All of these were good ideas, and I guess I could have used them all, but because I am scaling down the meatloaf recipe by half for the single cook, I didn't want too much going on in the filling.  I talked this over with my mom and she told me she recently tried adding the chipotle pepper in her meatloaf and it came out really good.  I took her advice, added the chipotle pepper to the usual ingredients, and the meatloaf I created was moist and delicious.  Exactly what I wanted! AND it reheated really well.

So find the recipe below. I used 1 pound of ground turkey instead of the usual 2 which makes about 4 servings.  Perfect for the single cook.  And we have my mom to thank for the spicy balsamic glaze.  We both had been using Bobby Flay's idea to mix balsamic vinegar with ketchup but my mom said she had the extra chipotle pepper on hand so she figured she would throw it in the sauce.  The results were DELISH!! Enjoy!

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
½ bell pepper, any color, finely diced
1 small onion or shallot, finely diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 lb. ground turkey
2 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons oregano
2 chipotle peppers in adobo, minced, plus 1 tablespoon adobo sauce
1 large egg
1/3 cup breadcrumbs, plain or Italian
Salt, to taste
Spicy Balsamic Glaze, recipe follows


Preheat Oven 350 degrees.

In a small sauté pan, heat olive oil and add the chopped onion and bell pepper. Sauté for 4-5 minutes, or until soft, add garlic and cook for a minute more.  Remove pan from heat and allow to cool while you prepare the meatloaf.

In a bowl add ground turkey, cumin, oregano, salt, egg, breadcrumbs, and chipotle peppers, and adobo sauce.  Then add the pepper and onion mixture to the bowl and, using your hands, mix all the ingredients together.  Spray a loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray and press the turkey mixture into a loaf in the middle of the pan (see picture to the right).  Remember it will not fill the entire pan.  Spread half of the balsamic glaze over the top of the meatloaf, and put pan into the oven and bake for 1 hour.

Remove meatloaf from the oven and using 2 spatulas transfer the loaf to a plate or serving platter to prevent from drying out.  Serve with the remaining spicy balsamic glaze.

Spicy Balsamic Glaze

3 tablespoons Balsamic Vinaigrette
3 tablespoons Ketchup
1 small Chipotle Chili Pepper in Adobo Sauce*

*If you only want a hint of heat, add 1-2 tablespoons of adobo sauce.  For more heat, add a larger pepper.  I think 1 small pepper is just right.  Also, the glaze is great with just vinegar and ketchup so eliminate the chipotle altogether if you don't want any heat.

Directions: Finely mince the chipotle pepper and combine with vinegar and ketchup in a bowl.

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