Monday, April 4, 2011

Unfolding a Cooking Contest

A few years ago I entered the Pillsbury Bake Off with a recipe for Turkey Casserole, which was an invention of mine created from the need to use the few ingredients I still had left in my house before getting to the grocery store.  I stood and stared into my pantry one evening only a short time before dinner ought to be served wondering, "What in the world are we going to have for dinner tonight?"  My family loves meat loaf, but all I had was ground turkey and not enough time to cook it as a meat loaf.  I don't actually think it is the meat loaf they love as much as the sauce on top of the meat loaf which is a mixture of ketchup, brown sugar, and dry mustard.  I remembered I had Pillsbury crescent rolls still in the refrigerator, and I had some Kraft Mexican shredded cheese.  Here is the recipe:

1-1/2 pounds ground turkey
2 rolls of refrigerated Pillsbury crescent rolls
1 cup ketchup
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon ground mustard
8 ounces Kraft Mexican shredded cheese

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.  Brown the ground turkey and then drain it.  Add the ketchup, brown, sugar, and dry mustard to the turkey and mix well over medium heat.  Lightly spray the bottom of a 13 x 9-inch baking pan.  Place one roll of crescent rolls onto the bottom of the baking pan.  Pour the meat on top of the crescent rolls and top with the second package of crescent rolls.  Cook for 12-15 minutes until top layer starts to brown.  Remove from the oven and sprinkle the cheese over the top.  Return to the oven for 5 minutes or until cheese melts.  Cut into 8 squares and serve.

This recipe can be trimmed a bit to reduce fat and calories by using reduced-fat crescent rolls and 2% shredded cheese.  I did not win with this recipe, but my family still loves it.  So, I will keep making it.  I am even making it for dinner tonight.  It is super simple, and I know no one will complain.

Every year around this time I wonder what I can enter into the Pillsbury Bake Off.  The winner receives $1,000,000.  I'm pretty sure that would come in handy around here.  I have a few ideas about how to spend some of it.  Other winners can receive new kitchen appliances and $5,000.  There are several different categories.  Check it out at  I have an idea for this year's recipe, but I have to get to the store and buy the ingredients and find the time to make it.  The deadline is 11:59 p.m. central time on April 18, 2011.  I will keep you updated on my progress and hopefully add some pictures.