Meatloaf – Not Like Mom’s

There are a million meatloaf recipes from the classics to grandma’s favorite. Are you ready for another one? Why is this recipe so different and so good? One reason is that I made fresh bread crumbs from rye bread! ( It was the only bread in the house.) The result was truly fantastic. “Necessity is the mother of invention.”

Meatloaf with Nutmeg and Rye Bread Crumbs


  • 1 cup fine fresh breadcrumbs (from 6 slices rye bread. How to make it. .see below)
  • 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, coarsely chopped (entire celery with leaves on – if you have it)
  • 4-5 garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons grape seed oil (or – your preferred cooking oil ),
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef chuck, preferably 20% fat
  • 1/2 pound ground pork ( half beef and half pork works well too)
  • 1/3 of a Nutmeg -grated
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup ketchup, divided


  1. Position rack in center of oven; preheat to 350°F. Prepare baking sheet with 2 buttered pyrex or loaf tins.
  2. Place fine ‘Rye Bread’ crumbs at the bottom of a large mixing bowl.(preferable stainless steel).
  3. Pulse onion, celery, and garlic in a food processor until finely chopped. (Alternatively, you can chop by hand.)
  4. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat, add onion celery, garlic, stirring occasionally, until softened, 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in Worcestershire. Add beef, pork, eggs, 1/4 cup ketchup, and remaining 1 1/4 tsp. salt and 1 tsp. pepper to breadcrumb mixture. Mix with your hands to combine. Then, add cooled onion mixture, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Mix to blend. (Please wear disposable gloves while mixing.) Note: Dividing the salt and pepper gives a more even distribution.
  5. Form meatloaf mixture into a long, lightly-packed, approximately 5″-wide loaf shape on prepared baking sheet. Brush top of loaf with 1/4 cup ketchup. Bake meatloaf until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center registers 155°F, 60–75 minutes. Let rest 15 minutes before slicing.

BREAD CRUMB INSTRUCTIONS: To make a fine crumb with fresh breadcrumbs, preheat oven to 300°F. Place 6 slices rye, marble rye or light rye bread on a baking sheet. Bake until completely dry and just beginning to turn toasty golden brown, 15–20 minutes. Allow to cool slightly. Then, pulse in a food processor to get a fine crumb.


Nutmeg comes from the seed of the Myristica fragrans tree. Indonesia produces the majority of the world’s nutmeg. The spice flavors many dishes, both savory and sweet, in cuisine across the globe. Nutmeg is a rich source of antioxidants, which help protect against the signs of aging and serious conditions such as cancer, heart disease, and liver disease.


  • Instead of ketchup you can use a mushroom gravy. Add mushrooms 🍄 to the meatloaf and also have it as a topping in a white sauce. 🍄
  • Certified Organic beef; no antibiotics or growth hormones added. Grain fed or grass fed cows.
  • Plant based meat substitute.
  • Pasture raised pork. No- GMO. Free of antibiotics and hormones.

Let me know how you made out! Share with your friends and facebook and twitter! Sharing is caring! ☺️❤️😏

Very cute. Same recipe placed in muffin tins. Less cooking time. I have not made this version. If you are adventurous, you might want to try it out. Let me know how they turn out! ☺️

Ginger Jam ~ Chill’n With Pumpkin!

Ginger jam needs fruit to become a jam. I used primarily tangerines in this recipe. Don’t throw out your old pumpkin. This jam uses pumpkin. Pumpkin pairs well with oranges and lemon. People add from 2 tablespoons to 1/2 cup of ginger in their jam. I use one cup of chopped ginger. It is your palate. You decide. Watch the videos and see how everyone makes jam a little differently.

Freezer Jam

FREEZER JAM -Spicy ginger & sweet pumpkin. NO SUGAR!

Freezer jam uses less sugar than regular shelf jam. Also, shelf jam goes in the fridge after you open the jar. Freezer jam starts in the fridge. You can freeze these jams too.

What Makes GINGER JAM Good?

(1) The spicy notes from ginger. A different jam.
(2) Ginger Jam is packed with nutrients! (3) Date sugar replaces processed sugar.

Powdered DATE Sugar can be purchased or made at home.

HOW to make date powder/sugar? See video below.

I grew up with cloudberry and lingonberry jam in Finland. Both jams are not overly sweet with a slightly tart taste. In Canada, I tolerated apple jelly until I started to make my own jams. I prefer freezer jam because I get that great blend of flavours without the sugar rush.

NOTE: is no longer providing a print feature. I will get the code to add a new print button as soon as I can do it! 😦



  • 1/2 – 1 CUP of diced ginger (peel ginger by scraping with a metal spoon or peeler)
  • 1 1/2 cup of date sugar [ watch date sugar making video – see below ]
  • 3 1/2 heaping cups of fruit (about 2 lbs); tangerine segments combined with cooked pumpkin. You may add apples and/or apple peals or mandarin oranges. Note: It all has to add up to 3 1/2 cups
  • Zest* 3 tangerines [ use zest tool -see below] and soften in 1/3 cup of hot water [ use microwave ]
  • A big pinch of sea salt [enhances the flavour]
  • 1 lemon (about a heaping tablespoon) (Zest lemon and combine the lemon zest with the tangerine zest )


  • Prepare ginger: Finely dice or purée in a blender. You can do half puréed and half rough, diced ginger, for texture.
  • Dice/chop orange segments (or other fruit) with cooked pumpkin to make up 3 1/2 cups of fruit (& pumpkin).
  • Mix chopped fruit, softened zest and date sugar together. and set aside for 1 hour [ very important step ].
  • Add mixture into a heavy pot. Then, add lemon juice, ginger, salt and left over zest water. Bring to a boil over medium/high heat. TIP: Make sure your pot reaches a rolling boil for about 3 minutes.Your jam is very close to being done. At this point you should have reached the required temperature to set your jam/jelly)
  • Check for doneness: Cook fruit until your thermometer reaches 220 F or 105C. [ 30-60 minutes]
  • If you are not using a thermometer, test the jam by looking at the drips from your stir spoon. Slow, syrup-like drips indicates the jam is ready. I recommend this for experienced jam makers. More caning tips: For newbies: Use the thermometer and spoon test together to see how the jam looks at the correct temperature. You may skip the thermometer test after you are more experienced.
  • Remove pot from heat when you have reached the required temperature.
  • Place jam in warm, sterilized jars and store in the fridge for 1 month, or freezer for several months.

Natural Pectin

*Zest: The majority of the pectin resides in the citrus peel. Natural pectin helps remove toxins such as lead and mercury from your body. TIP: make single batches only. Double batches do not work well. Gift extra jam to friends.

Zest Tool

Commercial Pectin

Commercial pectin is made from Apple pulp, citrus zest and acidic lemon juice. Pectin like Certo and Sure Jell are added to jams to promote a thick gel while making home made jam. But, that can change the flavor of your jam. If you want to ensure you are “Gellin” with ‘natural’ jam, you can add apple skins to your jam for added pectin. Sieve the apple peals out as you fill your jam jars. I use the tangerine zest for my natural pectin in this ginger/pumpkin jam recipe.

JAM with Date Sugar – A Surprise Find!


ANSWER: No! There’s really not a whole lot of difference between the two besides the form you give the fruit. Preserves noticeably have more chunky fruit.


  • Watch the way the jam drips.
    • Swirl your spatula through your cooking jam, hold it up over the pot, and watch how it falls. If the jam runs right off the spoon and looks thin and runny, it’s not done yet. However, if it forms thick droplets that hang heavily off the bowl of the utensil, but don’t immediately fall off, it is either nearing completion or is done. When the jam falls off the spoon almost like a is completely done.
  • Give it time to Set.
    • Jam can take up to a week to achieve its finished set. You may think its runny, but its not. Some jams take 3 hours or 3 weeks to set into a gel like state. Don’t declare it a failure ten minutes out of the pot. I learned the hard way. If it’s done and runny put the jam in a jar. It’s okay. As it cools the jam thickens. Be Patient
    • HARD JAM: If you cook your jam too long it will start to get hard or even burn in your pot. Take heed of a thermometer or the dripping spoon test. Everything can happen very quickly when you are on a rolling boil.
  • Watch and listen.
    • When is the jam ready? As a seasoned jammer, I have learned that most batches of jam will tell you when they’re done. When the cooking noise takes on a frenzied quality that sounds more like a sizzle than a gentle boil. IT IS DONE ! You will also notice that towards the end, the foam subsides and jam starts to gather more thickly on the sides of the pot, and it begins to splatter more violently.

Jam or Preserves?

Home-Made LOVE …Jams or Preserves. It’s All Good!

Classic AMISH Strawberry Jam Recipe

Freezer Jam Tips

Two Dates a Day..Keeps The Doctor Away!

Noor Dates
Two Noor Dates

How To Make Your own Date Sugar [ Easy]


  • Clean the dates by rinsing
  • Soak dates in 1/2 vinegar and 1/2 water for 15 minutes. dates
  • Spread onto a tray and dry in the oven at 250 F
  • Oven or air dry dates until hard
  • Place dry dates in a grinder and reduce to a granular powder

Spicy Chick Pea Soup

This is my new favorite soup! Have you ever had collards? Today, I am featurIng this neglected super food: collard greens!

If you are a Southerner (U.S.), you probably have ‘traditional’ collard greens and black-eyed peas on New Years day to bring abundance and good fortune 🍀 to your New Year! 🎉 Join me for a visit to Flavor Town in the soup factory!

COLLARD GREENS: Full of Energy! “Super Food”


  • 1-2 bunches of collard greens ( You decide how much you want – more is good)
  • 3-4 red onions
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tbsp. smoked paprika (heaping)
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds (smash, do not grind)
  • 1 tbsp. cinnamon (heaping)
  • 10-15 green or white cardamon pods*
  • 2-3 cans chick peas (drained: 14-16 fl oz)
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes** with 2 (tomato) cans of water
  • 3 tsp pink Himalayan salt
  • A handful of chopped cilantro ( or parsley) about 1/2 cup


  • Assemble and mix your dry spices in one bowl Rinse and chop collards (Rip or cut out the hard center stem)
  • Add oil to your dutch oven (or heavy pot). Then add chopped onions, heat until translucent. Add chopped garlic and blend quickly.
  • Add spices and mix well with onions and garlic [ add more oil if ingredients start to dry up ]. You want to mix the spices with the onion for optimal flavor.
  • Add 2 cans of drained chick peas
  • Add chopped collards
  • Add 1 can of tomatoes + 2 cans of water. (more water if soup looks more like a stew)
  • Bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Add pink salt and chopped cilantro in the last 5 minutes of cooking.
  • Optional: Add about 1 tsp. of fresh thyme, rosemary and/or 1/4 tsp hot pepper flakes for added heat Add these additional spices in the beginning with sauteed onions.
Chick Pea Soup With Collard Greens (Topped With Toasted Black & White Sesame Seeds). I sometimes sprinkle chia seeds.


  • More Vegetables:- Add 1, 2 carrots and/or a handful of mushrooms. I do add extra veggies (If they are in the house).
  • Chick pea substitute:- Use white navy beans, cannellini beans, lentils, or black-eyed peas or a blend of various beans.
  • Collard substitute:- Swiss chard or kale, (or spinach).
  • FLAVOR BOOST: 1/4 to 1/2 tsp of Maggi chicken powder, or 1 cup of homemade stock! I do add Maggi powder – I call it Maggi Magic!

Chick peas (garbanzo beans) are very high in protein. Good choice to reduce high blood pressure, reduce wrinkles, weight loss and much more.

Green Cardamom – Mild, Aromatic Spice. A Perennial Plant In The Ginger Family
  • * TIP1: Gently pound dry cardamom with a mortar and pestle. Then, remove most of the pod casing with a sieve or by hand. Keep pod casings for stock or when boiling rice.
    ** TIP2: Use POMI tomatoes (or San Marzano tomatoes). Order online or check at Costco, your supermarket or Italian grocery stores.

PRECAUTION: Eating chick peas, may make you bloat or get a stomach ache. Instead, use white navy beans or broad (fava) beans. Fava beans are good for the immune system and improves bone density. (Info provided by my biologist neighbor)

SALT TIP: When salt is added to food early in the cooking process, it tends to break out the water in the vegetables being cooked. To retain moisture and flavour from the spices, salt is added at the end. Also, adding salt early tends to make the chick peas hard.

If you like this recipe and make it, snap a photo send it to me, or, share it on your social media. I can check it out and leave a comment! 😀

Eggplant -Roasted With Pomegranate

I was excited to snip some lemon thyme for my favorite grilled eggplant. File this under EASY RECIPE . Make it once and you will be hooked for life!


  • 2 large eggplants
  • 1/3 cup olive oil (adjust as needed)
  • 1 1/2 tsp. (fresh) lemon thyme plus a few sprigs for garnish
  • Maldon Sea Salt & pepper
  • 1 pomegranate
  • 1 tsp. za’ater


  • 9 tbsp. buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 clove of crushed garlic
  • a pinch of salt


  • Preheat oven to 400F
  • Cut the eggplant in half lengthwise
  • Place diagonal incisions (diamond shape) on the cut side of the eggplant ( do not pierce the skin)
  • Brush eggplants with oil until absorbed by the flesh – I added more oil.
  • sprinkle with fresh lemon thyme, salt and pepper
  • Roast for 35-40 minutes until nicely browned
  • While the eggplant is roasting, remove pomegranate seeds and prepare the buttermilk sauce
  • Refrigerate sauce until eggplant has completely roasted
  • Top eggplant with sauce, sprinkle pomegranate seeds and za-atar on top with a drizzle of oil
  • Garnish with lemon thyme

Spice Of Life

We need to roast more veggies! A high-heat cooking method that brings out the best flavors in vegetables. Also, bland vegetables like eggplant and zucchini are vessels for spices to make something delicious.

Maldon Sea Salt

Maldon Salt is an English sea-salt. It comes in large, thin, uneven, crunchy salt flakes that have a very clean, pure salt taste. I buy it at my local grocery store.
If they don’t have it, get your grocer to order it. Just ask!
The Za’atar shrub is common to the middle east and Turkey. ( It looks like oregano. ) You can grow your own plant if you can get the seeds or starter plant.

Home Made Za’atar … Jamie Oliver’s Food TV

Za’atar is one of the few spices you can eat with a spoon. Full of Nutrition.

You can buy Maldon salt flakes and za’atar online. Jamie Oliver provides the recipe for make your own za’atar blend . A healthy concoction that tastes amazing! The secret ingredient for this middle eastern recipe. It’s delicious! The day I made this recipe, I didn’t have buttermilk or milk. I did have Greek yogurt and another tangy plain yogurt I use in recipes. Today, it’s a substitute for buttermilk. You can make your own buttermilk by adding a tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice to a cup of regular milk. The za’atar and lemon thyme makes such a difference. I can not say enough about how really fantastic it tastes. It’s one of those recipes you will make again and again.

Canal House Lentils #Plant Based Salad

It was hard to find the origin of Canal House lentils. I was told New Orleans. But, I found no evidence to support this claim. If you know, please share in the comments. More importantly, this recipe hails Le Puy lentils, a unique member of the lentil family.

Le Puy Lentils

FRENCH Le Puy LENTILS are about one-third the size of regular lentils and have a slight peppery taste. They are grown in mineral rich volcanic ash in a French town called Le Puy (PWEE)-en-Velay in the Haute Loire region of Auvergne, France. Aromatics are sautéed and then simmered with French Le Puy lentils for 20 to 25 minutes. It is an easy side dish, redolent of a Provencal feast. Authentic Le Puy lentils have an A.O.C. (appellation d’origine contrôlée) seal of approval. In fact in 1996, Le Puy green lentil was the first vegetable to obtain an A.O.C. designation.

French Green Lentil – Verte du Puy


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium leek white and pale green parts, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 cup of green lentils ( preferably French Le Puy Lentils)
  • 2 tbsp. reduced salt soy sauce
  • Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper


  1. Take a saucepan and heat oil on a medium heat.
  2. Add the leek and cook for a minute/ then add chopped garlic and tomato paste, stir and watch as paste darkens in about 4 minutes.
  3. Add lentils and ½ cup water. Boil it on high and then reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 45-55 minutes, with occasional stirring.
  4. Remove from heat and set aside covered for 10 minutes.
  5. Then, stir in soy sauce and season with salt and pepper.
  6. Optional: Serve with diced scallions, red pepper and/or cilantro, parsley and finely chopped kale.

Serving Suggestions

Warm Salad Today ……Cold Salad Tomorrow. You Can Serve It Either Way

Quality & Assurance of Origin -AOC


Le Puy lentils: The first vegetable to acquire the AOC ( Appellation d’Origine Côntrolée ) certification in France. It assures the buyer that this item originated in the geographical region of Le Puy in France. AOC supports the authenticity of wines, cheese or in this case Le Puy lentils.

  • 💜 Tiny slate-gray/green lentils grown in France
  • 💜 They make a delicious side dish
  • 💜 The hold their shape after cooking
  • 💜 BUY French Le Puy Lentils. online
  • A.O.C. mark of quality and assurance of origin

LENTILS in general are loaded with protein, iron and zinc, not to mention fibre, folate, and potassium. They’re also rich in prebiotics that are brilliant at feeding your friendly flora. A must have every day of the week!