Friday Recipes

It's finally Friday, after a crazy week. (Don't ask!) Here are six yummy recipes to help you through the weekend, including Slow-Cooker Beef Stroganoff, Southern Macaroni and Cheese, and Creamy Vegan Hot Chocolate. Enjoy!

SIMPLE MEATLOAF WITH OPTIONAL TOPPING

This comes from Diana Rattray on The Spruce Eats. Diana wrote, “This delicious and simple meatloaf recipe is a great fit for Sunday dinner. Feel free to use plain ketchup to top this dish, or, if you're feeling a little adventurous, make the optional topping. For a tasty meal, serve the meatloaf with homemade mashed potatoes and peas and carrots or your favorite vegetables.

“Note: Ground beef with a ratio of 80/20 or 85/20 will produce the moistest and most flavorful meatloaf. Baking the meatloaf in a specialty meatloaf pan or on a rack will help drain away some of the excess fat. If you don't have either, you can make a free-form loaf on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet or 9-by-13-by-2-inch baking pan.”

Prep Time: 15 minutes; Cook Time: 80 minutes; Total Time: 95 minutes; Yield: 6 servings.

To view this online, click here.

Ingredients

For the Optional Glaze/Topping:

4 tablespoons ketchup

4 tablespoons maple syrup (or honey)

2 tablespoons Dijon (or similar mustard)

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

For the Meatloaf:

2 pounds ground beef

2 large eggs (lightly beaten)

1/2 cup milk

1 cup fine dry breadcrumbs (plain)

2 tablespoons dried minced onion (or 1/2 cup finely minced fresh onion)

1 1/2 teaspoons burger seasoning (or 1 1/4 teaspoons salt and 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper)

1/2 cup ketchup (plus more for topping, if desired)

Directions

Gather the ingredients.

Heat over to 350 degrees F.

Spray a 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

If using the optional topping, in a small bowl, combine 4 tablespoons ketchup, maple syrup, mustard and Worcestershire until well mixed. Set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, eggs, milk, breadcrumbs, onion, burger seasoning, and 1/2 cup of ketchup.

Mix until well blended and pack into the prepared loaf pan.

Bake the meatloaf for 1 hour and 10 minutes. Carefully drain off any excess fat and then top the loaf with the optional topping mixture or about 4 tablespoons of ketchup. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes longer.

Serve and enjoy!

Tips

Ground beef with a ratio of 80/20 or 85/20 will produce the moistest and most flavorful meatloaf. Baking the meatloaf in a specialty meatloaf pan or on a rack will help drain away some of the excess fat. If you don't have either, you can make a free-form loaf on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet or 9 x 13 x 2-inch baking pan.

Experiment with meat mixtures in meatloaf. While beef gives excellent flavor and holds together well, adding a portion of lean ground pork will provide juiciness. Ground veal would add lightness to a loaf, and ground chicken or turkey would reduce some of the fat and calories.

Top the meatloaf with prepared barbecue sauce just before it's finished baking.

Use cracker crumbs or soft breadcrumbs in the meatloaf instead of fine dry breadcrumbs.

Line the loaf pan with parchment paper or foil, like a sling. Just grab the ends of the paper or foil and lift the meatloaf out of the pan when it's done.

Bake the meatloaf in individual muffin cups. Use about 1/4 cup of meatloaf mixture for each muffin cup.

Pack the meatloaf mixture into individual oiled ramekins, and then invert them onto a rimmed baking sheet for perfectly shaped individual meatloaves.

Instead of breadcrumbs, use crushed cheese crackers in the meat mixture.

Top a meatloaf with strips of bacon before baking, or add crumbled cooked bacon to the meat mixture.

SOUTHERN MACARONI AND CHEESE

This comes from Kiera Wright-Ruiz in The New York Times cooking e-newsletter. Kiera wrote, "There is macaroni and cheese, and then there is special occasion macaroni and cheese like this one. Unlike most recipes, which start with a roux, this one begins with a milk-and-egg base, which gives the dish an incredibly rich, silky taste. It’s adapted from Millie Peartree, the owner of Millie Peartree Fish Fry & Soul Food restaurant in the Bronx, who has been making this dish since she was a little girl. The recipe was passed down in her family for generations, but because of the generous amount of cheese used, the dish was only made for events like Christmas and Thanksgiving. Extra-sharp Cheddar adds tartness and a layer of Colby Jack creates a gooey, molten center. If you can’t find a Colby Jack blend, shredded mozzarella or a Mexican-style blend will work in its place."

Yield: 8 to 10 servings; Time 45 minutes, plus cooling

To view this online, go to https://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1020515-southern-macaroni-and-cheese.

Ingredients

Kosher salt and black pepper

1 pound elbow macaroni

2 cups whole milk

2 large eggs

4 cups shredded extra-sharp Cheddar (about 16 ounces)

1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), melted

2 cups shredded Colby Jack (about 8 ounces)

Preparation

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a boil. Add macaroni and cook according to package directions until a little under al dente, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a colander and rinse under cold water to stop cooking. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk milk and eggs. Add cooked macaroni, 2 cups extra-sharp Cheddar, melted butter, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and stir until well combined.

Add half the macaroni mixture to a 9-by-13-inch baking dish in an even layer. Sprinkle 1 1/2 cups Colby Jack evenly on top. Spread the remaining macaroni mixture on top in an even layer. Cover with aluminum foil, transfer to the middle rack of the oven and bake for 30 minutes.

Remove from oven. Carefully remove and discard the aluminum foil. Top the macaroni mixture with the remaining 2 cups Cheddar and 1/2 cup Colby Jack. Broil on top rack until cheese is browned in spots, 3 to 5 minutes. (The broiled cheese can go from golden to burnt fairly quickly, so keep a close eye on it.)

Remove from oven and let cool until the macaroni and cheese is fully set, 10 to 15 minutes. (The mixture may first appear jiggly, but it will firm up as it cools.) Serve warm.

STEAK, ROASTED TOMATO AND BEAN CHILI

Recipe Yield: Makes 8 servings.

Source: TBC

Recipe and photo appears courtesy of Cattlemen's Beef Promotion Board.

To view this online, go to https://diabeticgourmet.com/diabetic-recipes/steak-roasted-tomato-and-bean-chili.

Ingredients

3 pounds Shoulder Steaks, cut 3/4-inch thick

2 tbsp vegetable oil

1 medium green bell pepper, chopped

1 medium onion, chopped

2-1/2 cups no-salt added roasted tomato salsa

1/4 cup chili powder

2 tsp ground cumin

2 cans (15 ounces each) no-salt added black beans, rinsed, drained

Optional Toppings/Additions

Guacamole, chopped fresh cilantro, chopped purple onion, chopped tomato, shredded cheese

Directions

Cut beef steaks into 3/4-inch pieces.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in stockpot over medium heat until hot. Brown beef in three batches. Set aside.

Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil, bell pepper and onion to same stockpot. Cook and stir 6 to 8 minutes or until vegetables are tender.

Return beef and accumulated juices to stockpot.

Add salsa, chili powder and cumin; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover tightly and simmer 1-3/4 to 2-1/4 hours or until beef is fork-tender.

Stir in beans; cook, uncovered, 10 to 15 minutes or until beans are heated through, stirring occasionally.

Serve chili in bowls. Garnish with Toppings, as desired.

Nutritional Information Per Serving: Calories: 289; Fat: 10 g; Saturated Fat: 3 g; Fiber: 6 g; Sodium: 264 mg; Cholesterol: 78 mg; Protein: 32 g; Carbohydrates: 23 g

MEXICAN BREAKFAST CASSEROLE WITH HASH BROWN TOP

This is from Old El Paso, and begins, "Bored of the same ol’ breakfast every morning? This irresistible hash brown casserole will pull you out of your rut – golden crunchy potato crust and tender layers of eggs, cheese, tortilla, peppers and chiles."

Prep Time: 10 minutes; Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes; Makes 12 servings

To view this online, go to https://www.oldelpaso.com/recipes/mexican-breakfast-casserole-with-hash-brown-top.

Ingredients

16 large eggs

3 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend

4 large Old El Paso™ Flour Tortillas

1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped

4.5 ounce can Old El Paso™ Chopped Green Chiles

1 bunch green onions, chopped

1 teaspoon salt

4 cups shredded hash brown potatoes, thawed

1 packet Old El Paso™ Low Sodium Taco Seasoning

4 tablespoons butter, melted

1/2 cup crema (optional)

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 325°F. Spray a large 9x13 inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.

Cut the tortillas in to 1/2 inch by 1 inch strips. Whisk the eggs thoroughly in a large bowl. Then mix in the shredded cheese, chopped bell pepper, chiles, 1 cup chopped green onions, salt and tortillas. Pour the mixture into the baking dish.

In a separate bowl, mix the shredded potato with the Old El Paso™ Taco Seasoning. Then drizzle the butter over the top of the potatoes and toss to coat.

Sprinkle the shredded potatoes over the egg mixture in an even layer. Then place in the oven and bake for 50-60 minutes until the center is puffed up and the hash brown top is crispy. Serve warm, drizzled with crema and sprinkled with green onions if desired.

SLOW-COOKER BEEF STROGANOFF

This is from Betty Crocker, and begins, "When you transform a classic special-occasion meal into an easy-breezy weeknight dinner, it’s no wonder that you’re a top-rated recipe by hundreds of home cooks. Find out what all the buzz is about and try this beef stroganoff slow cooker recipe the next time you’re in need of mealtime inspiration."

Prep Time: 15 minutes; Total Time: 5 hours 15 minutes; Servings: 8

To view this online, click here.

Ingredients

1/4 cup butter

2 lb boneless beef sirloin steak, cut into 3x1/2x1/4-inch strips

1 cup chopped onion

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 can (10.5 oz) condensed golden mushroom or cream of mushroom soup

1 carton (8 oz) sliced fresh mushrooms

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

4 oz cream cheese, cubed (from 8-oz package)

1 container (8 oz) sour cream

6 cups hot cooked noodles or rice

Directions

In 12-inch skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add beef strips, onion and garlic; cook 7 to 9 minutes or until beef is browned.

In 3 1/2- to 4 1/2-quart slow cooker, mix beef mixture, soup, mushrooms, salt and pepper.

Cover; cook on low heat setting 5 to 6 hours or until beef is tender.

Stir cream cheese into beef mixture until melted. Stir in sour cream until well blended. Serve over noodles.

Expert Tips

Sprinkle with finely chopped fresh parsley for a bright finish.

Beef sirloin steak is more tender than other cuts of beef that are used for stews. Cooking the beef in butter until browned, results in the best flavor. Then the very low heat of the slow cooker keeps the meat tender.

With the slow braising of the stroganoff, the cream cheese creates an instantly smooth sauce, that combined with the sour cream stays thick and rich.

It’s easier to cut the beef into clean slices when it’s partially frozen for about 1 hour.

To save precious minutes in the morning, use minced garlic in a jar. You could also cut up the beef the night before and refrigerate.

CREAMY VEGAN HOT CHOCOLATE

This came from Genevieve Ko at The New York Times cooking e-newsletter. Genevieve wrote, "For a vegan hot chocolate that rivals even the creamiest dairy-laden variety, add a few tablespoons of nut butter like almond, sunflower or peanut to the nondairy milk, chocolate chips and cocoa powder. Whisking is also essential here; nondairy products tend to contain stabilizers that keep them emulsified, so they can separate when boiled. If you keep whisking the mix as it heats and remove it from the stove when it’s nice and steaming, but before it boils, you’ll end up with perfectly smooth hot chocolate. Don’t worry if it breaks: You can simply blend it with a whisk or immersion blender over low heat to bring it back together."

Yield: 2 cups; Time: 5 minutes

To view this online, go to https://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1019960-creamy-vegan-hot-chocolate.

Ingredients

1/3 cup vegan semisweet chocolate chips (about 2 ounces)

3 tablespoons vegan unsweetened cocoa powder

3 tablespoons creamy nut or seed butter, such as almond, sunflower or peanut

Pinch of kosher salt

1-1/2 to 2 cups unsweetened nut or grain milk, such as macadamia, walnut, almond, cashew, hazelnut, oat or rice milk

1 to 3 teaspoons granulated sugar (optional)

Preparation

Combine chocolate chips, cocoa powder, nut butter, salt and 1/2 cup nut or grain milk in a small saucepan. Whisk over medium heat until the chocolate melts and the mixture is smooth, about 1-1/2 minutes.

Whisk in 1 cup nut or grain milk in a slow, steady stream, and continue whisking until cocoa is steaming, about 1-1/2 minutes. Don’t let it come to a boil or the cocoa will separate.

Taste a spoonful. (Be careful: It’s hot.) If you prefer a thinner hot cocoa, add up to 1/2 cup additional milk. If you prefer it sweeter, add a teaspoon of sugar at a time, tasting after each addition. Divide among cups and serve hot.