This past weekend was the second annual HoBOOken 5k race, which benefited the Hoboken Homeless Shelter. I am a member of the shelter's development committee and helped spearhead a fundraiser with the Elysianettes that provided over 600 meals for the shelter so I signed up for the 5k and was later joined by my friends Eileen and Jen.
Now, initially the weather looked gorgeous but as the Oct. 29th race date closed in the forecast turned ugly - I mean super, fell down the ugly tree and hit every branch on the way down ugly. It went from rain to intense rain to cold to cold, with rain and snow. But, the race was to go on - snow or shine.
So the night before the race we held a pre-race slumber party and I made dinner at home - full at of carbs, zippo nuts (allergy), and packed with protein. Also, I must say it was mighty sensitive to my stomach, which tends to hate any meals pre-race. I think it gets jittery. The problem I faced was not tummy troubles, but rather standing out for 2 hours pre-race in the rain and cold, rain-weighted clothes, not being able to feel my toes or fingers and a runny nose.
Our Pre-Race Pasta Dish - Tomato Basil Sauce and Turkey Meatballs with Mushrooms
Preheat oven to 375
1 package Shady Brook Farm - 93/7 turkey
Use a paper towel to clean about a dozen cremini mushrooms, chop finely and saute
Mince about 6 cloves garlic (average size) drop in over the mushrooms saute until brown
add a little salt, pepper and a little rosemary (fresh)
let the mix cool
add 1/4 cup egg whites and 1/2 cup bread crumbs and 1/2 cup parmesan cheese to meat mixture - add cooled mushroom mix and some basil - dig in and mix with your hands.
Shape into golf ball sized balls - in a frying pan add a little Pam and brown a bit on each side place on a baking sheet and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
Sauce and Whole Wheat Pasta
In a large saute pan - heat up 2 tbsp olive oil - chop up tomatoes, I used a variety of tomatoes, vine tomatoes and Campari tomatoes as well as a few big slicing tomatoes. I cut them all up in 1 inch pieces and put them in the saute pan and let them start to stew and simmer on med-high heat for about 10-15 minutes, adding salt and pepper and 2 or 3 cloves of minced garlic, Eileen stirring occasionally. I then added a lil oregano, a small dash of red cayenne pepper and a pinch of cumin. Then, stealing from Bodyrock TV, I intended to put in a pinch of honey in lieu of sugar, but since I couldn't find honey I used a dash of agave nectar, which seemed to work fine. I continued to let it simmer and sit, while I cooked a box of whole wheat linguine to package instructions, rinsed and drained some white beans and chopped some basil. I turned the sauce down and added the chopped basil and little bit of pasta water and those white beans. In a large bowl I added the linguine covered it with cheese and then added the sauce. Top it off with the meatballs and use a big spoon to get the juices and you're set. We served it with a big salad - Organic Gurl Green and baby Spinach. It got rave reviews from the crowd (though I will add Billy was not fond of the mushrooms in the meatballs nor the turkey but the 3 girls voted him down). It served Jen and I well when we battled the elements the next day and tided us over until we found refuge and, more importantly, brunch and hot chocolate at Hoboken hotspot 10th and Willow. It was delicious all around.
And to all those who ran in the snow covered race - hope the cocoa was warm - you did a wonderful thing for the shelter and those in need !!