I Ate Like the Minnesota Twins For a Day
I’ve also been spending a lot of time in the kitchen, experimenting with new recipes and attempting to bake decadent desserts (that always turns into ordering said dessert from a professional establishment). Therefore, I decided to combine my two new hobbies and my established love of baseball to attempt to eat like the Minnesota Twins for a day.
Unfortunately, the internet does not have much information about what our favorite athletes typically consume on a daily basis. Therefore, I would like to thank my friend and fellow Twins Daily contributor, TCAnelle, for digitally lending me her copy of From Our Clubhouse to Your Kitchen by the Twins’ Wives (@MNTwinsWives). I picked out three of the most delicious (ok fine...most foolproof) recipes to recreate during my day as a Twin.
*Author’s Note: I am very grateful and privileged to be able to experiment with recipes with my fully stocked kitchen during this pandemic. Therefore, I have chosen to make a donation to Second Harvest Heartland, a Minneapolis-St.Paul food bank that is feeding the community during this crisis. If you can, please consider donating to your local food banks and charities during this time of need. Here is an article from the Star Tribune on how you can lend a helping hand in Minnesota. Stay safe and well, everyone.
Breakfast: Cup of Coffee
I am not a breakfast eater. Growing up, I always had the obligatory bowl of oats that my mom meticulously cooked for me every morning. But as an adult, I simply do not have the motivation or energy to consume anything in the morning. Instead, I always start my day off with a mug of Tim Hortons coffee with a splash of half and half or oat milk.
I decided to dedicate my morning joe to all of the Cup of Coffee players over the years, and in particular, Joe Nuxhall’s first baseball debut as a teenager.
Lunch: Jake Cave’s Stuffed Peppers
For lunch, I wanted something light that wouldn’t disrupt an afternoon workout. Jake Cave’s Stuffed Peppers seemed like the obvious choice.
Rating: 4 out of 5 baseballs
The finely chopped garlic brought life into the blandness of the white rice. I added some additional spices to add some extra flavor to the otherwise bland meat. Just for an extra “oomph”, I also threw in a few extra vegetables into the filling for a little more body. Using a well flavored tomato sauce is the biggest saving grace in these peppers.
Generally, my biggest issue with stuffed peppers is that the peppers are always undercooked or overcooked. However, covering the dish tightly with foil allowed for time to steam the pepper to a perfect degree of doneness before baking it to perfection. Additionally, I broiled these peppers for a few minutes to allow the cheese to turn into a gooey, warm blanket. While this may not be the flavorful or most beautiful dish to look at, this is an easy, healthy, go-to dish.
Snack: Protein Shake
This is a self-explanatory snack. No “traditional” snacks were provided in the cookbook, so I went with the one that seems like a common choice for most athletes. My favorite is the vanilla flavored Premier Protein shake that you can find at any Costco.
Dinner: Jake Odorizzi’s Pizza Pasta
There’s a Canadian restaurant chain called Boston Pizza that I always visit when I make a trip up north. They have a pasta dish called the “Hungry Carnivore” which is essentially every meaty pizza topping imaginable, bell peppers, and tons of cheese, tossed with marinara sauce and penne. Jake Odorizzi’s Pizza Pasta recipe looks eerily similar to the Hungry Carnivore, so I decided to give it a try.
Rating: 5 out of 5 baseballs
This was so good that I forgot to take a photo. It was that good. I used my favorite Italian sausage from Trader Joe’s and Rao’s marinara sauce.The key to Odorizzi’s masterpiece is cooking the pasta in the sauce. They say to salt your pasta water for flavor. Therefore, cooking the pasta in the tomato sauce took the flavor profile to the next level by integrating the seasonings directly into the noodle. Baking the pasta briefly in the oven turned the shredded mozzarella into melted perfection. The fresh parsley on top added a restaurant flair to the humble dish. This is the dinner that you need to tuck into on a cold, Minnesota night.
Dessert: (Tyler Duffey’s) Mama Hutch’s Mint Fudge Brownies
I am one of the worst bakers on this planet, so I needed a recipe that had some sort of a mix involved. Thankfully, I had a box of Trader Joes’ chocolate truffle brownie mix calling my name in my pantry. I’ve never heard of cream de mint, but I had exactly two scoops of Thin Mint cookie ice cream in my freezer, which I figured was probably close enough.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 baseballs
Mama Hutch knows what she’s doing. The mintiness of the ice cream was a refreshing counterbalance to the richness of the chocolate brownie. If you are not partial to any particular brownie mixes, I highly recommend using the same one that I did. I had to forgo the chocolate topping because the dessert was already very sweet as it is. The suggested addition of the sweet topping to the already decadent dessert was the only knock on its rating. Mama Hutch may have suggested allowing the brownie to cool before serving, but you can bet your bottom dollar that I dug into the brownie right out of the oven.
Overall, I was very impressed with the taste and quality of every recipe that I tried. Everything was easy, fast, but delicious. There were several other recipes that I also recreated from the cookbook following this experiment (Rod Carew’s Parmesan smashed potatoes, Trevor May’s lemon chicken, etc). I highly recommend picking up a copy of this cookbook in the future!
Let me know in the comments below or on Twitter (@renabanena) if you try your hand at any of these recipes at home!
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