- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 5, 2004

Whole grains are in great favor these days. Recent recommendations for dietary guidelines, popular diets and an overall desire for healthy eating all in their way add to the appeal of whole grains.

The following recipe gives a tasty low-fat twist to an old family favorite, meatloaf — this version includes whole-grain oatmeal, used with a combination of turkey and other ingredients that give the dish a Mediterranean flair — while still needing only about 45 minutes to make from start to finish. Serve the meatloaf sliced to show off its distinctive spinach and feta filling.

Mediterranean meatloaf

1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes (about 1 ounce)

10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained

cup chopped onion

1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese

1 pounds ground turkey breast

1 cup oats (quick or old fashioned), uncooked

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon dried oregano

teaspoon salt (optional)

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

cup fat-free milk

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Soften tomatoes according to package directions; coarsely chop and set aside.

In small skillet, cook spinach and onion over low heat 4 to 5 minutes or until onion is tender. Remove from heat; cool slightly. Stir in cheese; set aside.

In a large bowl, combine turkey; oats; garlic powder; oregano; salt, if desired; pepper; milk; and sun-dried tomatoes. Mix lightly but thoroughly. Shape 2/3 of turkey mixture into 9-by-6-inch loaf in 13-by-9-inch baking dish. Make a deep indentation down center of turkey mixture, leaving about 1 inches around edges of loaf; fill with spinach mixture.

Top with remaining turkey mixture to completely cover spinach filling; pinch edges to seal. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until juices run clear when pierced with fork. Let stand 5 minutes before slicing. Makes 8 servings.

ASSOCIATED PRESS

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