Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Meatloafins And A Damn Good Tomato Tart

Did y'all grow up eating meatloaf?  I didn't.  And am pretty sure I am the only person in America who didn't.  I tasted it several times and never liked it.  So it wasn't until I was an adult- a few years ago actually- that I made a meatloaf.  For my dad's birthday I believe because he looooves the stuff.

But because I didn't grow up eating meatloaf, I wasn't really sure how to make it.  I assumed it was as the name suggested.  A bunch of meat in a loaf shape.  So my meatloaf and my hamburgers are exactly the same but in different shapes.  Meat.  In this case, ground turkey.  And seasonings.  Usually chopped onions or scallions and whatever else I grab in the pantry.  I'll tell you my secret to every other thing I make...a little freshly grated nutmeg.  But shhhh!

It wasn't until fairly recently when I learned that most meatloaf recipes include some form of starch- breadcrumbs, cereal, or even potato chips.  Ew.  I'm sorry if you make it that way and I now know that is the traditional way to make it.  But it just sounds so gross to me.

But the thing is that cooking a loaf of lean, ground turkey takes a very long time.  I am rarely willing to wait that long.  And have solved the problem, thanks to seeing Rachel Ray do this first.  Meatloaf in muffin tins.  Or as I call them, meatloafins.  (Oh I just think I am so clever.  Don't just encourages me.)  I just use an ice cream scoop to divvy up the meat.  I brush on a dot of ketchup.  And bake.  But keep an eye on them.  They cook in a fraction of the time of a normal loaf.  They freeze great too if you want to make a big batch and eat them later.

In addition to my meatloafins, I made the most spectacular gluten free tomato tart.  Because all of my t'maters are suddenly ripe.  Like on the same day.  And I have to say, this was my best gluten free pie/tart crust to date.  I changed things up but it really worked and tasted amazing!  Which was a relief because as usual, I made the thing up as I went along.  The recipe should work fine for regular all purpose flour but I was adjust the liquid down- start with just a few tablespoons at first. 

Tomato Tart

Ingredients (Crust):
* 2 1/2 cups Gluten Free flour blend
* 2 sticks butter, cut in cubes and ice cold
* pinch of salt (more if your butter is unsalted)
* 1 tablespoon sugar
* 1/4-1/2 cup ICE water

Ingredients (Tart):
* 1 medium onion, chopped
* 1/3 cup shredded cheese
* 1 ball fresh mozzarella
* basil leaves
* 3 large tomatoes, sliced thick
* 3 eggs
* splash of milk
* salt and pepper to taste (note that the cheese has a lot of salt)

Directions (Crust):
* In a food processor, pulse the GF flour blend, salt, and sugar a few times to incorporate.
* Add half the butter.  Pulse several times.

* Add remaining butter.  Pulse and SLOWLY add water.  Add water just until a dough ball forms.  Remember that you can always add more water but it's impossible to remove it.

* Dump out onto plastic wrap and form two flat disks.  Wrap individually and let rest in fridge. 

* You will only need one for this recipe.  Wrap well and label the other.  Pop in freezer for later use.

* After allowed to chill for at least 30 minutes, roll out between two sheets of plastic wrap.  This really helped to keep the dough from breaking apart as so many GF doughs have done to me over the past year.

* Remove top layer of plastic wrap.  Lift second layer and flip into tart or pie pan. 

Directions (Tart):
* Slice onion and place in microwave safe bowl.  Microwave for @3 minutes.  This really helps to speed up the cooking time.  Drain liquid off.  Saute on medium in shallow pan until caramelized.

* Place onions on bottom of tart crust.  Spread out evenly.

* Add shredded cheese on top of onions.

* Add basil on top of shredded cheese.

* Add sliced tomatoes.  Try to remove the seeds/watery part to so that the tart isn't too runny.  That's the one change I will make the next time around.

* Top with slices of fresh mozzarella.

* In a small bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, salt and pepper.  Pour in tart- trying not to get egg mixture on top of mozzarella cheese.

* Bake at 375 until done- about 40 minutes.

I often refer to dishes as not for company.  As in, they are not pretty, even if they taste amazing.  I am not sure I would serve meatloaf, regardless of shape, to anyone outside my innermost circle of family and friends.  But the tart, most definitely, is a very company worthy dish.  It's not even remotely low fat.  But it's so different and tasty.  Try it.  Everything about it was simple to make, but I think the end result is quite pretty and flavorful!

1 comment:

  1. Your tomato tart looks wonderful, and you meatloafins are adorable! I think the kids would enjoy having their own individual meatloafin. Thanks for sharing.