Pawesome Pastabilities!

The other day the girl brought her lunch to work and she wanted M & I to sample it.  She didn’t out-and-out say she wanted us to try it, but we know that is what she wanted because when the phone rang she just left her lunch sitting on the table….. she is very shy… she doesn’t like to ask for things…. we’re working with her on this.  Anyway, she’d brought some leftover spaghetti and meatballs that she’d made for dinner the night before…. It smelled pretty good, so M & I didn’t mind giving it a try.  OMP!  It was totally pawesome!  There were three meatballs, so we figured that she wanted us each to have one….  We could tell that she was really excited that we’d tried them… she was jumping up and down and waving her arms while she was still on the phone.  As soon as she hung up she came running over to see what we’d thought.

Oh, my paws!  It was totally Pawesome!

Later she told us that the meatballs came from an idea she had after making a Parmesan Meatloaf that she’d found on Pinterest.  With the Balloon Festival fast approaching the girl has been all in a tizzy.  We don’t know what she is complaining about!  We’re the ones who have to greet all the people popping in the office!  Geeze, she just plays on the computer and talks on the phone all day….. like that’s work?!  But, she says that she is very busy and is so tired when she gets home that she doesn’t feel like cooking.  She told us that she took the meatloaf recipe and made THREE different meals with it!  We were totally impressed ’cause usually we just eat kibbles for every meal…. Three DIFFERENT meal!  Wow!

The girl just has one pet human, B, and herself to cook for, and she says that the Parmesan Meatloaf recipe made too much for the two of them.  So she made the full recipe but only made a third the mix into a meatloaf.  The remainder she made into meatballs.  And then she used the meatballs to make Spaghetti & Meatballs AND Shepherd’s Pie!  Wow!  We were worn out just thinking about all that, but the girl insisted that it was pretty easy.

Day one: Make the meatloaf mix.  One third of the mix gets shaped into a loaf and stuck in the fridge for tomorrow (or frozen).  The other half gets made into meatballs.  Spaghetti & Meatballs for dinner!  Pour some of the extra spaghetti sauce over the meatloaf.

Day two (or whenever, if you froze your meatloaf): Meatloaf and mashed potatoes for dinner!

Day three (or the day after you ate the meatloaf & mashed potatoes…): Shepherd’s Pie for dinner!

You see how there’s an order here?  We didn’t get it at first, but the girl had taken photos…. (we don’t know why she does that, but it did come in handy)…

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Parmesan Meatloaf 
slightly adapted from Mommy I’m Hungry

1 lb ground turkey
1 lb ground beef
2 eggs
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1-2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 small onion, grated
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup mariana pasta sauce
1/2 cup shredded cheese

Pre heat the oven to 350 degrees.

Mix:
In a large bowl, combine the ground turkey and beef, eggs, breadcrumbs, thyme, oregano, basil, garlic, onion, salt, pepper and Parmesan cheese.

Meatballs:                                                                                                                        Shape mix into 1-2″ balls and cook in a skillet until lightly browned.  Finish cooking the meatballs in an oven heated to 350 degrees. (25-30 minutes)

Meatloaf:                                                                                                                          Place 1/3 of the mixture in the loaf pan and form into a loaf. Top the meatloaf with pasta sauce.  Place filled loaf pan on a baking sheet and bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes – 1 hour. Remove the meatloaf from the oven and sprinkle the top with shredded cheese. Place the meatloaf back in the oven and bake until the cheese is melted.

Make mashed potatoes to serve with the meatloaf.  You will need about four cups of leftover potatoes for the Shepherd’s Pie…. so make about 2-2.5lbs total (if you are making REAL mashed potatoes)

Shepherd’s Pie: Most Shepherd’s Pie recipes call for “ground” meat… so you could make 1/3 of your mix “smashed”, but meatballs are fun and easier to have cooked and frozen earlier…

Place two cups of mashed potatoes in a pie pan.  Sqhoosh it around to make a “crust”.  Fill the crust with the meatballs, and whatever veggies you like: corn, carrots, peas…. then top the whole thing with two more cups of mashed potatoes.  Bake at 375 degrees for 45-55 minutes…. crust will start to brown.  Top with a handful (or two) of shredded cheese and bake until the cheese starts to bubble.

Enjoy!

Meow-Out to the girl’s pet human, B!  Thanks for saving some for us, pal!

-M&M

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