Meatloaf and Miracles

We received the most glorious Spring Sunshiney afternoon yesterday, and I knew it was coming, I worked hard to accomplish all my “To Do List” in the morning, including masking up and heading to the grocery store to get my mom’s and our groceries.   I rewarded myself with some basking time in the sun with 20C warmth, knowing we were getting some yucky weather ahead.

Weather here (in Niagara Peninsula, Southern Ontario, Canada), can on any given day, with or without warning – be quite fickle.   4 pm and  almost blistering hot in the sun, to next morning 2C with wet snow falling hard (those white stripes in the 2nd pic.. that’s wet SNOW in motion)

Re groceries: during this pandemic, I’ve managed to spread it out to about 10 days between trips, and would like to see if I can spread that even further to maybe 2 weeks by carefully budgeting food and resources in the house.  Those of you with more mouths to feed –  I understand it’s very likely impossible to do that.  I hear there’s people that go to the grocery stores still every day.. likely because it’s their one social outing.. but I can’t fathom that.  I’m not an anxious person, but i’m careful.  I don’t want to go out more than I absolutely have to.. so i have a hard time understanding those that are purposely going every day.    In fact.. i’d be happy to stay home and go nowhere at all til this pandemic is over. I mean.. i know i’m blessed, i’m in a newly renovated home, have a big fridge and separate freezer.. A home with a big backyard, and a gorgeous deck/patio with southern exposure.. so i don’t have to go anywhere… i have space here to roam.. and i’m finding the longer i’m home, the more i’m convinced about being an introvert.  I’m kinda thriving.. sorry to the extroverts.  I’ll admit – I feel that I’m getting more social interaction than I did when working with more people making  more phone calls, face-timing and Zoom..

Interestingly and sadly,  a lot less time with my Guillermo, as he’s an elder/treasurer in our church, and serves on a couple other committees – so most nights he comes home from work and goes straight to his home office, sometimes for 3.5 hour Zoom meetings.


Because today’s forecast was for cold, rainy, overcast and definitely not patio weather.. I made plans to cook & bake today.   I had lean turkey burger thawed, and looked up a bunch of meatloaf recipes on line.  I’ve never had much luck with meatloaf before, and if you’ve been following me a while, you know that I really don’t love the taste or smell of beef, so I typically substitute turkey or chicken “burger” in most recipes.

I found quite an interesting recipe that called for finely chopped mushroom, and since i’d just stocked up on mushrooms yesterday meant for a couple of other recipes, I  decided to give it a whirl.
Here’s the original recipe.

Lookit these lovely fresh mushrooms.. they’re so firm and crunchy.  I almost felt bad pulverizing them.


And here’s what Amy did instead… ’cause you know i only take recipes as suggestions.😊

Moist and Mushroomy Meatloaf

splash of Avocado oil
1/2 a red onion  (finely chopped)
3 garlic cloves minced
8 oz Cremini (baby bella) mushrooms finely chopped in food processor
S & P

img_8690heat pan, oil, and then fry onion til translucent, midway i added minced garlic, and finally the chopped mushrooms.  keep cooking til most of water is cooked off.  Cool completely.  Again, like yesterday, i cooled in the window sill.  See that black van in the driveway? It’s not supposed to be there right now…  It’s part of our “Miracle” story today – I’ll get back to after the recipe)


1 cup panko breadcrumbs (this bugged me, i felt mostly healthy til here.. I think next time i’ll pulverize some Mary Crackers.. unless someone has other suggestions of what to replace the breadcrumbs with to make the recipe healthier?)
1/3 cup milk (i use water with skim milk powder)
Soak & mix the panko with the milk
1 lb lean minced turkey
1/4 cup egg whites (equiv of 2 eggs)
3 tbsp ketchup
1 tbps worcestercire sauce
a few dashes of La Grille Vegetable Seasoning
a dash of smoked paprika


Now mix it all up … i used a fork, i canNOT put my hands in raw meat.. i’ll gag and can’t bleach my hands enough afterwards.  Honestly, this pic above is kinda grossing me out… ughh.

My mix felt still quite wet.. so i added a bit more panko, and then decided to put it in a loaf pan lined with sprayed plastic wrap to cool/set some more before upturning (& coating with more ketchup) on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper to cook later.

Plated later with garlic mashed potatoes, green beans and a salad. Comfort food on a plate!


I peeled and cut up all the potatoes early this morning while i was prepping the meatloaf and had them in the fridge ready to go on the stove about 2/3 of the way through the baking time.


(my garlic mashed: 4 large yellow flesh potatoes peeled and cut, 2 garlic cloves boiled in lightly salted water, drain, mash (I whip with my hand blender), add either herb & garlic cream cheese or plain cream cheese and a bit of milk when whipping)



The cooling/forming of the meatloaf worked well.  I topped with ketchup and a bit of this smokey Habanero sauce I brought back from Mexico in December.

Here’s the result.. some nice outer crunchy bits.. SOOO much flavour, and still nice and moist!

Let me tell you about our Miracle of the day… which partly explains why i was up so early doing food prep and baking.   Guillermo typically leaves for work by about 6:20 am, and without fail, kisses me goodbye while i’m still sleeping. About 3/4 of the time, I’m awake enough to remember.  Today he came back a 2nd time, a few minutes after the 1st.. to tell me “my van broke, i need to take yours today, K?”  and then he was gone.  This woke me up enough to not turn over and go back to sleep for a couple of hours, which I’ve been doing the last few days.

When I got to the kitchen to make coffee, I noticed his (black) van was pulled up about 3′ from where it normally sits, and parked on an angle.  He later explained to me that he thinks a spring broke.  the MIRACLE being the timing.   1) I’m off work and we have a second vehicle he can use right away, and 2) the biggest.. it didn’t happen 10 minutes later when he was going 110 km/hr (or more) on the highway.  We thank God for His protection.

As I watch the amazing birds out my window each day and remember that God cares even for the littlest sparrow or finch in such marvellous ways.. how much more, how much more, how much more... does He care for me, and supply all my needs every day.

Speaking of birds… here’s today’s Ornithology… we had a new visitor this afternoon.. i didn’t get a good photo, he was shy, and arrived in poor lighting, so I had to overexpose the photo to show his brilliance.. he’s a red bellied woodpecker!  Not sure why he’s named a “red bellied”.. it’s his cap that’s red.. not his belly.  He was quite large, a mature male.. likely a full 10″ or more. img_8709

This Dove sat and nonchalantly preened in front of the window for a good 1/2 hr.


We’ve discovered  we have orange house finches!  I honestly wondered if it was a cross breed between  American Goldfinch and a Housefinch.. (I’m guessing that’s impossible) but found out through the Cornel Ornithology Lab that it’s actually a variant of the typically red house finch.   I consider myself quite blessed, cause as you may know, I’m quite partial to orange..  πŸ˜‰

My photo of these darlings is quite blown up and from too great a distance, also not showing the brilliance of the orange head & breast, but THIS on line pic  (<—click here) that I found is much more indicative of what we have in our fun sideyard. 



And My dear friend Mr. Downy.. he visited quite regularly today as per usual.


Thanks my fair feathered friends for brightening the day, and readers for stopping by.  😘

Stay safe,  #stayhome





Published by billandamyskitchen

Bill (Guillermo 'cause he likes pretending he knows Spanish) and I (Amy) have been married since Sept 2005. We live in Southern Ontario, Canada - Niagara Peninsula in fact, smack dab between 2 of the Great Lakes. We love God, our family, our church family, and making each other laugh. (ergo the profile pic, he decided to make our photographer laugh by throwing a leg up on me just before the shutter clicked, which made ME laugh) When we married, I told Bill: "I don't know how to cook" but he had faith in me. So 15 years later, I'm still learning, and having fun. I've never (in my whole life) cooked a whole bird, chicken, turkey or otherwise. I've never roasted a beef, other than in a crockpot on low for 8 hrs. I like trying to find healthy & easy recipes and then I rarely follow them. I don't enjoy recipes that take hours or intricate steps. I have a special fondness for the Podleski sisters, writers/creators of the Looney Spoons, Crazy Plates and Yum/Yummer cookbooks. In 2018 we suddenly decided to rip our small house apart from stem to stern, moving out for 4.5 months while the house was demolished inside and out, and then rebuilt with an addition. If you go back in the archives to July-Dec 2018 you can follow that story. It's made our house open and so much more conducive to entertaining, small groups and large. It's given us the kitchen I've dreamed of to create and learn in. We feel incredibly blessed to be able to write about our journey, our faith in God and some fun recipes along the way. Thanks for joining us.

Join the Conversation

1 Comment

  1. Wonderful, Amy. The recipe sounds yummy and I always love your birds. Like you, I’ve always wondered why that was a red bellied bird when it was his head that was red. So thankful that the black van stopped in the driveway and not on the QE. Bill’s angel was very attentive that morning and we all need reminders of God’s care these days, don’t we?? Blessings, Nan&Pop

    Sent from my iPad


Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: