Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Sweet Potatoes in Maple-Mustard-Balsamic Glaze

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(Becky, the Mama.)

So what do you call someone who makes vegetables the “Star of the Show,”  and doesn’t eat meat — but also doesn’t get nervous if a ham hock touches her pinto beans,or shrink back when a spoonful of beef gravy is ladled over her mashed potatoes, and sometimes considers “bacon” to be in a food group all its own?

I thought I might be alone in the sea of food-preference categories until, that is, I stumbled on the term “flexitarian.”

If this is a new term to you, as it was to me,  here’s the basic  scoop:  A flexitarian diet is one that is plant-based with the occasional inclusion of meat products.[In 2003, the American Dialect Society voted flexitarian as the year’s most useful word and defined it as “a vegetarian who occasionally eats meat” in 2012, the term was listed for the first time in the mainstream Merriam Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary.

I still enjoy cooking for the meat-eaters in my family, so I will continue to post recipes now and again that include beef, chicken or seafood and fish.  However, my Daughter The Beautiful Healthy Vegan, has apparently influenced my food preferences over the year we’ve been writing this blog and our book together.   It all began when I noticed that after experimenting with eating “Rachel’s way” when I visited her or she came to our home,  my stomach would feel so nice and flat, even after eating a good-sized plate full of delicious food.

I made the decision to  go  95% vegetarian for a month, after having been served two really horrible, dry, meat-based meals while on vacation.  The thought of meat, at that time, began to nauseate me and it was freeing to just do away with it altogether.  Turns out this was the easiest dietary change I’ve ever made.   I found I was actually relieved to have an excuse to double up on the veggies and by-pass meat (or have just a bite or two if it really looks and sounds good).

One benefit of being a vegetarian is that you start to look at veggies in a whole new way.  Since they will make up the bulk of your meal, you really want them to taste incredible, to come out of their former dull side-kick status and tap-dance into their own spotlight.

This dish, made of roasted Brussels Sprouts, sweet potatoes and almonds, then drizzled with a butter, maple, mustard and balsamic glaze,  will steal the show away from just about any hunk of cow or chicken..   You could serve it as is, or over some pasta, gnocchi, brown rice or quinoa.   The almonds can be left whole for extra crunch or chopped or slivered.. your preference.  Toasted walnuts are be delicious. It is also yummy and a bit more filling  with some  sliced and browned Field Roast apple sage sausage (my favorite vegan meat substitute).  To easily  extend it to the meat eaters in your home,  add a little crumbled brown Italian turkey sausage.

Most people are convinced by the growing research about cancer and heart-disease prevention, that they should eat more plant-based foods.   What Rachel and I will try to do is make this “good-for-your-health edict”  sound less like a punishment and more like a privilege by continuing to  offer easy, mouth-watering recipes that you will be excited about making, serving, and eating!  Just look at these veggies showing off as they take center stage:

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Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Sweet Potatoes in Maple Mustard Balsamic Glaze

1 – 2 T. olive oil

1 lb fresh Brussels Sprouts, stems trimmed and cut in half

1 large sweet potato, peeled and cute in bite-size cubes

3 cloves fresh garlic, peeled

1/2 t. sea salt  and 1/2 t. pepper

5 T. maple syrup

1 T. brown or Dijon mustard

1 T. butter

2 t. balsamic or red wine vinegar

1/3 cup almonds, toasted  (May use whole almonds, chopped or sliced.  May also substitute walnuts.)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Squiggle olive oil over large baking pan or cookie sheet.  Lay Brussels sprouts and sweet potato on the pain, along with garlic cloves. Toss all of this gently in the oil with your two clean hands, coating all sides of veggies.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Let roast for 20-30 minutes, turning once during the middle of cooking, until the veggies are starting to turn brown in places, and caramelize.

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Mash the roasted garlic with a fork and then gently toss it with the roasted veggies in a heat-proof serving bowl.

In a small saucepan, heat syrup, mustard and butter together and let boil and simmer until thickened a bit, like a glaze.  Remove from heat and stir in vinegar. Pour over veggies and gently stir.  Add more salt and pepper if needed, to taste.  Garnish with toasted almonds.

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The Title: Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Sweet Potatoes in Maple Mustard Balsamic Glaze
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Marinated, MOIST, Grilled Turkey Tenderloins

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(Becky, the Mama.)

*Update: This is our MOST popular recipe on this site!  Thanks so much for making it so!  Be sure to also check out a new and awesome recipe for juicy,  marinated grilled Pineapple Teriyaki flank steak.  Also melt-in-your-mouth delicious.)

“What is Sue making for dinner?” I asked Greg on the way to our friend’s home for a patio supper.

“I think she said turkey tenderloins,” Greg answered.

I must admit, though I knew Sue Kennedy to be a fabulous cook, I prepared myself for the dry, tasteless poultry that turkey breast has always been in my previous experience. (Obviously, I’ve not yet perfected the art of a moist Thanksgiving bird yet!)

So when Sue and her husband Jason served us a beautiful piece of grilled, moist turkey tenderloin, loaded with flavor, I was in awe. Then I asked for seconds. And then I woke up thinking about it the next day – the sign of truly memorable meal.

“Okay, Sue, how did you turn turkey breast into meat butter?”

She sent me a recipe for marinade with lots of ingredients, but all of them were in my pantry. The tenderloins are best if you can marinate them for a few hours or overnight. Sue recommends using a digital meat thermometer to eliminate guesswork and avoid overcooking. (Eventually, I’m going to buy myself one of those gadgets.)

Turkey tenderloins typically come two to a package and are a little smaller than pork loins. In fact, they look a lot like chicken breasts, if the hen was named Dolly Parton. Two other benefits: this turkey is moist as can be, but has very little fat and is a great low-cal source of high quality protein. In addition, it is very affordable and the leftovers make fabulous sandwiches. (Try turkey, whipped cream cheese. green onions and cranberry sauce sandwiches!)

Don’t be too daunted by the list of ingredients: use what you have on hand and just substitute something similar if you are missing an ingredient or two. I have made a couple of tweaks to Sue’s recipe, and you can feel free to do the same and make it your own. Marinades are awfully forgiving. As long as you have something salty (salt, soy) something a little sweet (teriyaki, sweet chili sauce, brown sugar, honey, maple syrup),  something garlicky (fresh or powdered)  and acidic (wine, vinegar, citrus juice) in the mix, it is probably going to be yummy!

Most of us are ready to get our health and our waistlines back in shape after the holidays, and this is a great recipe (under 170 calories in 3 oz serving)to put in your New Year file!  I served these tenderloins pictured using the second grilling method in the recipe below.  I roasted chunks of zuchhini, yellow squash, mushrooms and garlic with a little olive oil, salt, and balsamic vinegar for a side dish. Lip-smacking good meal!

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Turkey Tenderloins

2 pound turkey breast tenderloins
• 1/4 cup olive oil
• 1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
• 1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
• 1 t. hot sauce such as Tabasco
• 1 T. maple syrup
• 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
• 2 T. Worchestershire sauce
• 1 tablespoon spicy brown or Dijon mustard
• 3 garlic cloves, minced
• ½ cup wine, beer or cola
• Grill or Steak Seasoning (enough to sprinkle both sides of tenderloins)
Directions
Sprinkle all sides of turkey will steak or grill seasoning.  (Or salt and pepper.) In a 2-cup measuring cup or bowl with pourable “spout” – whisk all the ingredients for marinade. Pour 2/3 cup into a Ziplock bag; add turkey. Seal bag and turn to coat; refrigerate for 4 hours to overnight, turning at least once more during that time. Cover and refrigerate remaining marinade.
When ready to cook, discard marinade that is in the bag with the tenderloins, then proceed to cook using one of the following methods.

Outdoor Grill: Using long-handled tongs, moisten a paper towel with cooking oil and lightly coat the grill rack. Grill, covered, over medium heat for about 7-9 minutes on each side or until a thermometer reads 170°, basting frequently with reserved marinade.

Alternative Indoor Method: Use a nonstick grill pan that has been generously coated with olive oil and grill tenderloins on both sides until dark golden brown grill marks appear.

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Put in a preheated 350 degree oven and cook about 10 more minutes or until internal temp reaches 170 degrees. Remove from oven, immediately cover with foil to let juices redistribute before slicing. Heat reserved marinade to boiling in a small sauce pan and drizzle over the tenderloins.

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This was printed from: We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook
The site URL: http://welaughwecrywecook.com
The Title:Marinated, Moist, Grilled Turkey Tenderloins
The URL: http://wp.me/p1UwM9-Rg
This was printed from: We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook