You’ve seen it before on this blog. I have a thing for organization. I have a thing for geometrics. I have a thing for bacon. This dinner combined all three.
This semester Freya and I have gotten a new subletter, Shannon. Shannon was away in Chile for a year on exchange for her international business program. All you need to know is that she makes a lot of Mexican-inspired meals. Fajitas, tacos, everything delicious, fragrant and Tex-Mex-y. When it comes to food, I’m very impressionable. And so, a Hilary Makes Tex-Mex night was in order. Shannon’s weekday taco night was enough to push me off the edge. I needed it.
So what are these small spherical items, you ask? Only your future favourite thing ever.
The first are mini salsa-stuff meatloaves, a recipe found in March’s issue of Canadian Living (which is now splashed with bacon grease). The second were bacon smashed potatoes, something that I’ve been wanting to make for at least a year-and-a-half.
This was just what the doctor ordered. The two dishes were easy, filling and made my entire house smell like delicious cooked things. Normally I hate when my clothes absorb the smell of my kitchen, but I made an exception for this meal. I actually made an effort to open some of my dresser drawers so my clothes could flirt with the wafted aromas. Bacon-scented pajamas? Yes please.
Not the most photographic meal, but a solid dinner, lunch, lunch for someone else, dinner again, and late morning snack. Perfect.
Recipe: Mini salsa-stuffed meatloaves
From Canadian Living, March 2012
– 1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
– 1 green onion, chopped
– 1/2 cup drained canned black beans, rinsed
– 1 1/2 tsp chili powder
– 1/2 tsp pepper
– Pinch of salt
– 1 egg
– 1 lb (450 grams) of ground beef
– 1/3 cup salsa
– 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, grated
In a large bowl, combine bread crumbs, onion, black beans, chili powder, pepper, salt and egg. Mix in the beef. Shape into eight balls and place in lightly greased muffin cups.
With your thumb, make an indentation in the centre of each; fill with salsa and sprinkle with cheese.
Bakes in a 400 degrees oven for about 15-20 minutes, or until the centre of the meatloaf is cooked and no longer pink.
Serve with bacon smashed potatoes. Makes 8 mini meatloaves.
Recipe: Bacon smashed potatoes
Adapted from The Pioneer Woman Cooks
– Four medium-sized white potatoes
– 1 stick butter, softened and cut into pieces
– 5 slices bacon, cooked and finely chopped
– 2 whole green onions, sliced
– 1/3 cup sour cream
– Plenty of salt and pepper
– 1/3 cup(ish) cheddar cheese, grated
Bake the potatoes in the oven at 400 degrees until fork-tender. Add to a large bowl and smash with a potato masher (or in my case a pastry cutter..we lost our potato masher. Somehow). Immediately add softened butter, green onions, bacon, and sour cream and stir with a rubber spatula. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Use a muffin scoop to place rounded dollops of the potato mixture on a lined cookie sheet. Sprinkle with grated cheddar cheese. Bake for an additional five minutes, until cheese is melty and gooey.
Makes 7 potato spheres.