Thursday, October 18, 2007

101- Meatloaf

I've decided that I need to work on mastering some of the most basic recipes. The things that you expect every good cook and/or housewife would have in their repertoire, able to whip up at a moment's notice. When I started cooking I just started trying recipes, I didn't begin with an intent to learn these basics and go from there. So, while I make a bolognese sauce that my husband loves, I've never made a basic tomato sauce. I have yet to roast a chicken. These are just a few of the things that I think fall into that basic category. Hopefully this is just the first of my 101 posts.

For sometime now I'd been craving meatloaf. This isn't something that I ate a whole lot as a kid, but when we did have it I really enjoyed it. My husband had expressed disdain for the meal, so I never bothered to make it. However when, combined with my craving, the October issue of Everyday Food had a feature on the classic dish, I figured it was time I gave it a shot. The hubster agreed to give it a go. It turned out pretty good and we both gladly gobbled it up. I think next time I may try it in mini loaf pans, so that I can freeze some for later. And I realize meatloaf isn't the most attractive dish, but I hate not using pictures.

Classic Meatloaf
Recipe from Everyday Food; Serves 6

3 slices white sandwich bread
1/3 cup whole milk
1 1/2 pounds ground beef chuck
1/2 pound ground pork
1/2 medium onion, grated
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 large egg
1/2 cup ketchup
Coarse salt and ground pepper

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper. Place bread in food processor; pulse until fine crumbs form. Transfer to a small bowl; stir in milk. Set aside, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine beef, pork, onion, garlic, egg, 1/4 cup ketchup, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add bread-milk mixture, and mix very gently with a fork (do not overmix).
  • Place meat mixture on prepared baking sheet, and form into a loaf about 9 inches long and 4 to 5 inches wide.
  • Bake, brushing twice with remaining 1/4 cup ketchup during baking, until an instant-read thermometer registers 160 degrees, 45 to 55 minutes. Let meatloaf rest 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
My notes: I used store-bought bread crumbs because I hate my food processor, and we don't eat white bread so I wasn't interested in buying a loaf for 3 slices. Although that posed the problem of guessing how much to use. I used 1/3 cup and I probably could have used less. It turned out fine, but it was a very thick once the 10 minutes was up. Aside from that I really didn't change anything about this.

So, one basic recipe down, who knows how many to go!

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