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Meatloaf – Gluten Free

15 Dec

“Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves for they shall never cease to be amused.”  Terry Garey

“Do you know what’s wrong with your blog,” my friend asked.  “No, but you’re going to tell me.”  I love unsolicited advice.

According to my “friend” my blog lacks the requisite number of photos that would make my rants and recipes more appealing. Perhaps s/he is correct.  So when my creations don’t turn out to be exactly photogenic, I will insert other telling photos into my blog in order to bring it up to “standards”.


This is 4 cups of water that went into a recipe that didn’t turn out and you’ll never see.  Don’t ever make a chili that begins with instructions to boil the ground beef in 4 cups of water.  Just saying.

But on to the meatloaf INGREDIENTS:

2 pounds ground beef – grass fed, organic, if possible, of course

1 cup almond meal – this is what subs for breadcrumbs and makes the dish gluten free!

2 eggs

1 can tomato paste, 6 oz

1 small onion, diced

4 cloves of garlic, minced – more or less to taste

2 t salt

2 T  basil, dried, or 1/3 cup fresh, minced

2 t majoram

1 t black pepper

DISTRUCTIONS: Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix all of the ingredients by hand in a large mixing bowl.

The next step is to form the meat into a loaf shape and place it into a large, glass baking dish.  I could not find my large, glass baking dish.


This is our cat who just finished playing with her catnip and is hanging out in her plastic bag feeling paranoid.  I discussed my glass baking dish dilemma with her.  She suggested I use my heavy, ceramic pie plate. 

I decided to use my heavy, ceramic pie plate, which was a bit too small.  I wondered if I could line some muffin tins with bacon and bake part of the meatloaf mixture in there.  More Muffins!


Meatloaf Muffins wrapped in bacon.  Wouldn’t they be great in lunches if you’re cutting down on bread!  Read the book, “Grain Brain.”  Just a suggestion.

Bake for one hour or so until the meatloaf is no longer pink in the middle.  The muffins were done in an hour but the major meatloaf took another 20 minutes.  The main meatloaf was more tasty after it cooled a bit.


Meatloaf, split in two to check for doneness.  (Is that a word?)  Chunk missing on front to check the flavor.  Good Stuff!

Loveya – The Grandma

Spaghetti Squash Muffins

7 Dec

“Eat food. Not too much.  Mostly plants.”  Michael Pollan


Spaghetti Squash Muffins

I found this recipe that instructs the chef to stand over a hot stove and fry the batter into pancakes.  OK.  That’s about as much trouble as a broken finger nail.  (My nail broke!  What shall I do!!)  But some days I just don’t feel like wearing my big girl pants and laziness abounds.  

So I said to myself, “Self, could this batter be made into muffins?”  


1/2 onion, cut into chunks

1/2 cup almond flour

3 large eggs, but not ostrich

1/4 t baking soda

1/2 t cream of tartar

1 t salt

1/2 t pepper

4 cups roasted spaghetti squash, you’ll need a large spaghetti squash

coconut oil, enough to grease a muffin tin

DISTRUCTIONS:  Grease the muffin tin.  Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.

Place the eggs and onion chunks into blender or Ninja or food processor.  Whip it good!  Place in a bowl.

Combine the rest of the ingredients with the eggs and onion mixture except for the spaghetti squash.  Place the roasted spaghetti squash into a clean dish towel and ring out the excess moisture.  Then place that, too, into the bowl with the other ingredients.  Combine all.  Hands work well.

Fill greased muffin tins and bake for about 20 minutes.  Remove from the oven and flip the muffins over in their cups.  Bake for another 15 to 20 minutes.

When the muffins are finished baking and cool I place them into a container and refrigerate until I’m ready to use them.  I use them, slit lengthwise and warmed in a non-stick pan, under food where I’d normally use potatoes, rice, or some other grain.  That includes foods like Jambalaya, beef stew, chili, or any other meat in a sauce or gravy.  

DO YOU KNOW HOW TO ROAST A SPAGHETTI SQUASH?   I recently read the following instructions for roasting a spaghetti squash.  It began by saying to make a slit with a small knife along the top of the squash.  Next, remove the small knife and insert a LARGE knife.  So far, so good.

The instructions then said to bang the squash on a cutting board and it would split along the fault line.  I now have a large and small cutting board!


I don’t think that’s what they meant but such is life.  I did finally manage to split the squash in two, after which I scooped out the seeds with a large spoon.  After that it’s simply a matter of baking the squash at around 400 degrees, face down, on a baking sheet that’s sprinkled with water.  

When it’s finished baking, cool it right side up.  When it’s cool enough to handle, scoop out the strands of squash.  

If you’re not into the muffin thing, you can serve the spaghetti squash under spaghetti sauce or any other place where you might want spaghetti noodles.  Isn’t that exciting!  If it is, you need a life.

Loveya – The Grandma

Brainless Breakfast

3 Dec

“My doctor told me to stop having intimate dinners for four . . . unless there are three other people.”  Oscar Wilde

The main thrust of this entry is about an incredible breakfast that I enjoyed this morning.  It consisted entirely of muffins.  There were two kinds.  The egg, spinach and bacon muffin, and the salmon, sweet potato muffin.  OK.  Technically, you could call these cakes, but I made them in a muffin tin so I get to call them muffins.

It’s like having a baby.  (Where did that come from?)  If you make it, you get to name it.  Unless, of course, you have an elderly, wealthy, Aunt Cunigunda, who just might slip back into reality long enough to change her will.  Get real!

However, I’m just going to share one of the recipes in this post because my caffeine intake is wearing off.  I choose (drum roll) the egg, spinach and bacon muffin!


My Brainless Breakfast

Two Egg and Spinach with Bacon Muffin

One Salmon with Sweet Potato Muffin


6 eggs

1 green onion, chopped

Zucchini squash, medium sized, chopped

4 slices cooked bacon, crumbled

1/2 cup roasted red pepper, from a jar works fine

2 to 3 cups fresh spinach

Black pepper to taste

DISTRUCTIONS:  Preheat over to 350 degrees.  Grease muffin tin with coconut oil.

Whisk eggs, which we assume are out of their shells and in a bowl, along with some black pepper.  Place the rest of the ingredients, except for the spinach, into your food processor, and process until finely chopped.  Add to eggs.

Process the spinach and add to egg mixture.  Divide mixture among the 12-cup muffin tin and bake for 20 to 25 minutes.  

True confession:  I had some left over pepperoni so I threw that into the mixture as well.  The world continued to spin on its axis.  Remember, recipes are suggestions.  There are always many ways to screw them up personalize them.  I also baked my muffins a bit too long so I’d be sure that the eggs were cooked through.  They could have been fluffier, but they were still darn tasty.  

Next Question:  So you got up this morning and made a bunch of muffins?  No.  I made a bunch of muffins (three kinds) yesterday afternoon. My refrigerator runneth over with muffins.  This morning I simply placed my selection into a non-stick pan, covered the pan, put the stove on really low, and took a shower.  By the time I was bathed and dressed my breakfast was waiting for me.  I’m not just a pretty face!

Loveya – The Grandma

Good Grief Muffins!

2 Dec

“Never eat more than you can lift.”  Miss Piggy

My husband and I live on opposite ends of the food spectrum.  I’m trying to find foods that will support good health while providing meals that are wildly tasty.  Needless to say, I’m game for any new eating program that promises long life along with Nirvana on a plate.

My husband, who shall remain nameless because I sometimes can’t remember the name of my present husband, believes in eating for the pure joy of it, along with prescription drugs to control the damage.

Being a hopeless optimist, I sometimes attempt to put healthy foods into his diet.  Who’s going to do the yard work if he’s not feeling well!  (Insert loving wife tone into last sentence.)

Recently, I incrementally stumbled upon Paleo.  First I purchased a book entitled “It Starts With Food” by Dallas & Melissa Hartwig, which I thoroughly enjoyed but quickly dismissed.  Next I discovered “The Paleo Solution” by Robb Wolf.  This really caught my attention as I’m in my seventh decade and still planning to become outrageously healthy someday.  (Note: Someday is not a day of the week.)

Finally, I purchased two cookbooks, “Well Fed 2” by Melissa Joulwan and “Everyday Paleo” by Sarah Fragoso.  I’m hooked!  The food is delicious, my aches and pains are dissipating, and I’m sleeping better than ever.  (Cue the violins and shameless merchandizer.)  Sorry.  I’m not selling anything.  

But I am going to share a recipe that has my husband eating sweet potato without the aid of marshmallows and/or brown sugar.  In fact, just a few hours ago he gave a thumbs up to put these little jewels into his lunch.  “They’re even good cold!” he exclaimed as he popped another into his mouth.

SP Muffins    

You were expecting Ansel Adams!



6 slices of bacon (that explains a lot!)

1 medium sweet potato

2 eggs

1.5 t minced dried onion

1 t coconut oil

salt to taste

1 six cup muffin tin

1 oven

Kitchen, optional

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  


Grate the sweet potato.  OR,  If you’re lucky enough to have a Ninja (not the little guy Ninja but one of those fabulous choppers) simply cut the sweet potato into pieces and let the Ninja do the work in just seconds!  (Seriously, I’m not selling anything, yet.)  Combine sweet potato with eggs, mixing thoroughly.  Hands work.

Grease the muffin tin with coconut oil.  Place a bacon slice into each cup to form a cup-shaped lining.  Fill each with the sweet potato egg mixture.  Sprinkle with minced, dried onion.  Sprinkle with salt.

Bake for 45 minutes.

Trust me, even though we barely know each other, you will have some batter left.  Place it into a small, hot frying pan that’s greased with a bit of coconut oil.  Salt it.  Fry.  Flip.  Fry a little more.  A tasty veggie side to eat with your next meal.

Note:  the original recipe for these muffins included a bunch of chives in the ingredient list.  However, there was no place in the recipe where the chef was instructed to use the chives.  Forget the chives!

Loveya – The Grandma