Oh, I was so happy when I checked out the recipe list for this lady. Lots and lots of recipes that I could actually eat, gluten-free. Not many side dishes listed. Apparently she only knows how to cook meats.
I picked two recipes this week. Today was cool and rainy for a change, so I decided on Individual Meat Loaves and Parker’s Split Pea Soup. I picked the split pea soup because 1) it was gluten-free and 2) I’ve never had it before. The meatloaf recipe was picked because I figured there’s no way I’ll get the kids to eat the soup.
I’m not quite sure who decides on the level of these recipes, but I will say that the soup is listed as “easy” and the meatloaf is “intermediate.” I’d switch those, because it took a lot longer to cut up all the little veggies for the soup and it required watching on the stove…whereas the meatloaf went into the oven and was ignored until it came out.
First the soup…Ina tells you to “skim off the foam while cooking.” Ever boiled potatoes or rice on the stove and noticed the foam? Well, split peas do that too, but more. If you leave it long enough, it turns this sick greyish color. Pretty nasty looking. The picture for this recipe on her site looks like soup. Mine looks a bit more like stew, very thick. This also posed a challenge because most of the water seemed to cook off, leaving the mix very thick and prone to getting stuck on the bottom of the pan. Not fun. Not really crazy about high-maintenance cooking, and this recipe definitely was. Ina also tells you to taste for salt and pepper. I think the amount of salt she recommends is far too much. It was really salty, but that could be because there was no broth too. Hmmm.
I had called my parents to see if they wanted to come by for dinner, but they had just gotten home. I was down two guinea pigs. My kids adamantly refused to eat it. I said they had to at least taste it because it was a recipe we were testing. Jordan made all kinds of faces, took one bite and asked if he could have Kraft Mac n Cheese. Cady proclaimed, “it looks like DIARRHEA!” She claims she tried it but I have my doubts. I did eat half a bowl of it. It’s very salty but the overall taste isn’t terrible. I’d like it more if it was more soup-like and less like stew.
The meatloaf was quite easy to make. I had already cut up the onions for the soup, so I just did some extra and set it aside. There was no picture for this recipe listed on her site, so I have no idea if I formed the loaves the way Ina had in mind. Her recipe did call for bread crumbs, so I substituted Schar gluten-free bread crumbs. I also reduced the amount of onion she put in her recipe. Three cups of onion is just insane…and I’m not really crazy about onions anyway.
When I called to the kids that the meatloaf was ready, they came running to the kitchen. Both kids ate half of a “loaf,” both said they liked it, and Cady pronounced it ‘better than the diarrhea food.’ I ate all of my loaf, and picked out a few of the onions. We all put extra ketchup on ours. It was quite tasty.