Thursday, June 19, 2014

Family Bonding and Ground Turkey Haystack Dinner Recipe


I'm going to type two versions of this recipe. The first one is for the busier households, which calls for two cans of canned soup. Both my husband and I, along with Peter, have enjoyed the homemade version immensely, though two of our children put their noses in the air at the mushrooms and ate very little of anything but the meat and rice. The texture and rich taste from the brown rice and the homemade, non-salty flavor from the soups, married with the turkey, made the dish, so I can't vouch for the taste with white rice and canned soups. I've prepared this only three times but I think over time the children will get used to the mushrooms. I don't put them in other dishes often so it may take 15 or 20 offerings.

The recipe title comes from the concept of stacking. The bottom layer is rice; the meat, mushroom, soup mixture goes on top of that, then either peas or corn on top of that, ending with a dusting of grated cheese. It's delicious, trust me.

As you can see from the contrast in the recipes and in the preparation involved, a whole-foods lifestyle is about a more traditional notion of serving the family and about togetherness, rather than about a busyness that comes from carting the family around here and there. The idea is that the richness of life comes not from the events the family is taken to, but in the interaction that occurs while meals are lovingly prepared together, prayed and talked over together, and cleaned up together. The meal and the interaction are the events, and bonding and strength of character, mind, spirit and body are the fruits.

This manner of feeding the family and body and spirit stem from the belief that the family is the primary means by which God prepares parents and children to change the world for Christ. The nuclear family is primary, and the church family is secondary, with the secondary church family taking over, ideally, when there is no primary family available.

Thus, we open our homes in hospitality as much as we can when someone is missing a primary family for whatever reason. All the more reason to be home.


Haystack Dinner

original recipe here with photo

Ingredients (non whole-foods version)

2 lbs lean ground turkey
1 - 10 3/4 oz. can cream of mushroom soup
1-  10 3/4 oz. can cream of celery soup
2 T milk
2 cups (16 oz.) cooked peas or corn
2 cups uncooked rice
Finely shredded cheese for topping

Directions

In a large pot prepare your rice according to package directions.

Meanwhile, brown ground turkey in a large saucepan, then add both cans of soup and the milk. Stir until well combined and creamy. Cook until warm.

To serve haystacks, put some rice on a plate, top with meat mixture, then top with peas and finally top with shredded cheese. If your peas are warmed, the cheese, if finely shredded, should melt over them, but if not you can stick the plate in the microwave for 30 seconds. Enjoy.

Whole Foods Haystack Dinner 

Ingredients

2 lbs lean ground turkey (brown with minced garlic if desired)

2 cups uncooked brown rice & 2 T. butter (quick brown rice doesn't quite compare in texture and taste)

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup flour

1/4 cup finely diced celery

1/4 cup diced or sliced mushrooms

1 1/2 cups vegetable broth (Homemade Broth: Water and celery & carrots or assorted veggies in stock pot on simmer all day, or for several hours.)

1 1/2 cups whole milk (I used 2%)

2 cups cooked peas or corn

Finely shredded cheese for topping

Salt and pepper to taste at the table

Directions

Brown Rice preparation: In a large pot bring 4 cups water to a boil. Add 2 T butter. Stir in 2 cups brown rice and turn heat to low. Cover and simmer 40 - 50 minutes. Let stand five minutes and fluff with fork before serving.

Meanwhile, brown ground turkey in large pan. Your pan needs to be large enough to add the soups to later. I added 2 tsp. jarred minced garlic to the turkey as I browned it since I wasn't using much salt in the recipe.

In a separate large pot, melt 1/2 cup butter. Add celery and mushrooms, saute both until tender. Whisk in 1/2 cup flour and let it cook for a minute until bubbly. Whisk in the 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth and allow mixture to come to a gentle boil, stirring constantly. Boil 1 minute until thick and creamy.

Add soup mixture to ground turkey and stir until well combined and creamy. Cook until warm.

To serve haystacks, put some brown rice on a plate, top with meat mixture, then top with peas or corn, and finally top with shredded cheese. If your vegetables are warmed the cheese, if finely shredded, should melt over them, but if not put the plate in the microwave for 30 seconds. Enjoy!

top image

sharing with Works For Me Wednesday



1 comment:

multicolouredsmartypants.com said...

I might have a go at this. I like the idea of having your meal 'stacked'. Saves on the washing up! I love home-made dinners and family time. This is my job - I take it seriously (she says while avoiding getting on with housework in order to comment on a blog... I'll get on with it in a minute lol!)

Seriously, it is saddening to think of the families who only eat together on special occasions, or always in front of the TV. I wouldn't swap family meals for anything :-)
Sandy (back to the housework!)