I know some people who turn their noses up to the idea of meatloaf. Maybe it reminds them of something that their mother ought not have made. Or maybe it reminds them of styrofoam lunch trays and brown gravy that came from a can.
Whatever preconceptions you may have concerning meatloaf, put them aside, for tonight we dine humbly and dignified.
This dish may not be the prettiest, or “in vogue” but there is dignity in the most Ferial of cooking. Here is a quote that further illustrates what I mean.
“Every dish in the Ferial cuisine…provides a double or treble delight: Not only is the body nourished and the palate pleased, the mind is intrigued by the triumph of ingenuity over scarcity-by making of slight materials into a considerable matter. A man can do worse than be poor. He can miss altogether the sight of greatness of small things.”
– Robert Farrar Capon, The Supper of the Lamb
(I TOTALLY recommend you buy that book. It changed the way I approach food and eating forever)
Without further ado, I give you Meatloaf.
(adapted from sdebrango on food52.com)
2 stalks celery
1 medium or two small carrot
1/2 small yellow onion
1/2 cup of parsley, flat or curly
1 bell pepper (I used a red bell pepper)
6 mushrooms (I used cremini but you could use white mushrooms aka service mushrooms)
1 pound 85/15 ground beef
1 pound ground pork (mine was 80/20)
1 1/4 cups bread crumbs
2 large eggs lightly beaten
1 tomatoes I used a Roma, blended in blender
Salt and pepper to taste
1 splash Worcestershire sauce
1 splash of whole milk (optional)
Ketchup to brush on all sides of loaf ( I used Shemps Hot Ketchup)
- Preheat oven to 375. Prepare a sheet pan with parchment paper or a silpat. Chop celery, carrots, onion and parsley and place in blender or food processor. pulse until pieces are small. If you don’t have either of those tools, a fine dice (brunoise) will suffice.
- Sweat bell pepper and mushrooms, set aside to cool
- In a large bowl, combine your meat, veggies and all other ingredients. I suggest using your hands to mix, because it give you a better feel for when to stop mixing. If that freaks you out, use a big spoon.
- After your mixture is homogeneous, pour onto your sheet tray and make a free form loaf, try to make it as uniform as possible for even cooking. Brush a light layer of Ketchup up on all sides, and cover loosely with foil.
- halfway through baking, brush on another layer of ketchup and continue baking uncovered. Bake for an hour or until internal temp reaches 165.
- Let it rest for 10-15 minutes and dig in!
The beauty of meatloaf is that you can adjust the recipe for whatever you have on hand, and customize it to your liking….like wrapping it in bacon…
We ate this with a big marinated kale salad and a sweet potato and parsnip mash. It. was. Delish.