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Kitchen Mailbox: Turkey meatloaf delicious melange of veggies, nuts

Monday, November 22, 1999

By Arlene Burnett, Post-Gazette Staff Writer

Take one apple, two carrots, 1/2 cup of walnuts, some turkey sausage and ground turkey and what do you have? A delicious turkey meatloaf.

To be honest, ground turkey has little taste, so we weren't looking forward to testing this recipe. But after a second helping, we realized that this recipe was going into our keep-it file. The sweetness of the apple, the spicy sausage and the earthy flavor of walnuts all contribute to making this recipe outstanding.

We also have a cookie recipe that can be made for any occasion -- Caramel Tassies. This cookie takes some time but it's well worth it. The tart shells are made with the unbeatable combination of butter and cream cheese (please use real butter, you'll only cheat your taste buds if you don't). The filling is made by melting caramels with evaporated milk, and if that wasn't enough, these cookies are topped with a creamy icing.

Our final recipe, Zucchini Cookies, is a simple mix-and-bake cookie. They have a wonderful texture and fantastic flavor. The raisins and zucchini complement each other and the lemon extract adds snap. We stored the cookies in a cookie tin and they stayed fresh for a few weeks. Zucchini is available year-round at most major grocery stores.

Kathleen Jackson of Brentwood requested the Turkey Meatloaf recipe seen on WQED. Here it is, sent in by Margaret McCarthy of Scott.

Turkey Meatloaf

2 pounds ground turkey
1 pound turkey sausage
2 eggs
1/2 (14-ounce) bag stuffing mix
2 carrots
3 stalks celery
2 onions
1 apple
1/2 cup walnuts
1 can whole berry cranberry sauce
1 tablespoon poultry seasoning
1 or 2 jars turkey gravy

Place meats into large mixing bowl.

In a food processor with cutting blade, finely chop celery, carrots, apple, onion and walnuts. Add minced vegetables to bowl with meat. Add seasonings, eggs and 1/2 can of cranberry sauce. Mix meat mixture well.

Form into three loaves. Place loaves on a large baking sheet with a raised edge. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 1/2 hours or until juices run clear and loaves begin to brown nicely. Serve with turkey gravy and extra cranberry sauce. Loaves may be frozen.

Source: Roslyn Thony, Butler

Shirley Long of Donora requested a recipe for Caramel Tassies. Edith Tubbs of North Versailles sent us her recipe.

Caramel Tassies

1 cup butter or margarine (we used butter)
8 ounces cream cheese
1 cup flour

Cream together the butter and cream cheese. Add the flour to make a soft dough. Press on bottom and up side of mini muffin pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes or until golden brown. Wait for a few minutes and remove tarts from pan. Set on cookie rack to cool.

14 ounces caramels
1/2 cup (4 ounces) evaporated milk
1 tablespoon whiskey, optional

Mix above ingredients in double boiler. Stir occasionally until mixture is melted and smooth. Place a teaspoonful of filling in each tart shell, allow filling to set for about an hour. Prepare topping.

Topping: 1/2 cup margarine or butter (we used butter)
1/2 cup shortening
2/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons (5 1/2 ounces) evaporated milk

Cream butter and shortening. Slowly add sugar and milk. Beat until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and beat for another few minutes. Spread on top of each tart. Or for a more professional look, fill pastry bag with topping and pipe on tarts.

Note: You must beat the butter, shortening, sugar and milk until no sugar granules remain in the mixture -- this takes about 20 minutes.

Elaine Anderson's Zucchini Cookies

2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup shredded zucchini
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
1 cup raisins

Mix dry ingredients together and set aside.

Cream butter and sugar. Add egg, lemon extract, zucchini and beat until smooth. Add dry ingredients and beat until mixed together. Stir in raisins.

Drop by teaspoonfuls onto greased cookie sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 minutes. Makes 4 dozen cookies.


Lynn Steffan of Gibsonia would like a recipe for baked risotto with sun-dried tomatoes and summer sausage.

Anyone have a recipe similar to Dudt's Bakery's ice box cake? If you do, send it in for Nancy Goodall of Clearwater, Fla.

Rose Uchnar of Plum hopes someone will have the recipe for nut bread baked in soup cans.

If you want to answer a recipe request from a reader or are looking for a recipe yourself, please write to Kitchen Mailbox, c/o Arlene Burnett, 34 Blvd. of the Allies, Pittsburgh 15222. Please include a name, neighborhood and a daytime phone number. All recipes are kitchen-tested by the Post-Gazette.

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