Monday, February 18, 2008

Meatball Stroganoff

A mere five days after informing my parents that I had broken my ankle and foot, a box arrived at our doorstep. Mom, still suffering the final stages of walking pneumonia, had felt badly that she couldn’t drive the 2+ hours to our house to clean and cook for me, so she did the next best thing—she sent a box of goodies. Puzzles, hand lotion, magazines, and lots of cookies did a great job in dispelling the gloom of self-pity which I had created around myself. The peanut-butter brownies almost made up to Jack for the extra load of work that he was now shouldering.

I have been reading a lot of magazines lately. Mine had piled up over the holidays, and the ones which she sent were added to the basket. Mom has seven grandchildren, all of whom, at one time or another, have been part of a magazine-subscription drive. Most recently, my eight-year-old twin nieces are involved with this as fund-raiser for their Brownie troop. Needless to say, Mom and Dad receive a lot of magazines. Dad hasn’t owned a boat since the early 1980’s, yet he receives Boating World. They replaced their standard-sized mailbox several years ago with a much larger one, and this is always filled. Mom sent me many magazines!

Last week I was reading an issue of Woman’s Day and there was an article featuring “50 easy meals”. This was a subject which I had never been interested in before but, with my current situation, Jack certainly deserves to make some “easy meals”. I tore the article out, circled five or six recipes which seemed interesting, and added a couple of the ingredients to last week’s grocery list.

Yesterday, I decided to try the Meatball and Pepper Stroganoff. The recipe was a bit vague, not really a recipe at all but simply instructions on how to cook without specifying measurements.

It took only 25 minutes to prepare, and definitely wasn’t bad at all. I didn’t have particularly high expectations as one of the ingredients is condensed cream of chicken soup (I try not to be an ingredient snob, but condensed “cream of” soups always remind me of Tuna Noodle Casserole!). I was surprised. The only change which I would make next time would be to add some garlic to the onions and peppers as they cook.

Here is my version of the recipe. I added sliced mushrooms and replaced some of the water in the sauce with skim milk. As you can see by the photo, it would look more appealing with a sprinkling of chopped fresh parsley. But it's Comfort Food. Creamy and tasty and easy-- who could want more in less than a half hour? :)

You could easily make the recipe to serve four and use an entire standard size 10-ounce can of soup.

Meatball & Pepper


Adapted from Woman’s Day,

1 February 2008

Serves 2

5 ounces whole-wheat fettuccine

1 teaspoon olive oil

1 medium red bell pepper, sliced into ¼”wide strips

1 small sweet onion, halved lengthwise and sliced into ¼”wide strips

1 large clove garlic, crushed

¾ cup sliced mushrooms

8 turkey meatballs

2 teaspoons paprika

2/3 cup reduced-fat condensed cream of chicken soup (save the rest for another use…)

1/3 cup water

1/3 cup skim milk

1/3 cup light sour cream

Prepare fettuccine while cooking the rest of the meal.

Drizzle olive oil into a large nonstick skillet.

Add red peppers and sauté over a medium flame for 2 minutes; add onion and cook, stirring, for 1 minute; add mushrooms and garlic and sauté for 2 minutes. Add turkey meatballs and paprika and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.

Mix soup, water, and milk in a 2-cup glass measuring cup. Pour into the meatball mixture. Add freshly ground black pepper to taste.

Cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes. Turn heat to low and add sour cream, stirring gently to mix well. Turn off heat, add cooked fettuccine, toss to mix.

Divide between 2 plates; sprinkle with chopped parsley.