Mini Meatloaf Meal (a quick, easy and delicious mid-week recipe)

Meatloaf gets a bad rap.  The subject of many a joke, meatloaf has been relegated to this idea of a hard, dry, disgusting lump of "mystery meat" that should be avoided at all costs or surreptitiously fed to the dog.  But kiddos, I'm about to rock your world.

A Little Back-Story...
Meatloaf is actually one of my favorite dishes, partially because of the variety of incarnations out there. Many families have their own recipes that have been passed down for generations.  The dish itself (having its closest origins in scrapple but going all the way back to some Roman recipes) became a main staple for many American homes during the depression because of its capacity to help stretch the budget and make meat and other expensive ingredients last.  Because every household is likely to have different ingredients on hand, there is no "original" recipe for it, but the majority of them include ground meat (generally beef, pork or poultry), veggies (onions, carrots, celery, peppers etc), a binding ingredient (eggs, milk), a filler ingredient (bread crumbs, cornmeal) and whatever spices the cook happened to have on hand. As you can see, there's a lot of room for interpretation there.

My Recipe...
Over the years, I've experimented in my own kitchen to see what combinations I like the best.  What I finally came up with is a recipe that is incredibly yummy and also easy to whip up with ingredients I almost always have on hand.  Due to the fact that I'm usually preparing food for a smaller audience (Read: Me and my Significant Other), I use about half of the meat that most recipes call for and I split it into two even smaller loaves which means it cooks faster, looks prettier on a plate and leaves virtually no leftovers.  Emily-Grace for the win.

Entertaining Grace's 
Masterful Mini Meatloaf Meal
1/2 lb. Ground Beef 
1 Large Egg
1/4 c. Milk 
1-2 Pieces Shredded Bread (stale is great: use up those bread heels that no one ever eats!)
1/4 c. Seasoned Bread Crumbs
3 Tbsp. Chopped Onions 
1/4 tsp. salt 
1/2 - 1 tsp. dried rosemary (I break mine down further by giving it a quick chop or rolling it between my hands)
1/4. cup Other Veggies (optional) (I just throw in any chopped peppers or shredded carrots I happen to have on hand)

1/4 c. Ketchup 
2 Tbsp. Brown Sugar 
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire Sauce  

 Okay, Let's Do This... 

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
2. Beat the egg for thirty seconds.
3.  Combine egg, milk, bread, breadcrumbs, onion, veggies, spices and stir.
4.  Add ground beef and mix til thoroughly incorporated (some people can't stand to get their hands dirty, but I find it goes so much faster if you do). The mixture should be moist, but not so moist that it can't hold a shape. Add bread if it feels too wet; milk if it's too dry.
5.  Shape into two small loaves and place on greased baking sheet.
6.  In a separate bowl, combine glaze ingredients (brown sugar, ketchup and Worcestershire).  Spread over loaves, covering the outside.
7. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes.  Internal temp should be 160.  Do not overcook! This is the reason that people hate meatloaf!!
8. Allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Though each loaf is a single portion, my husband and I usually split one small loaf and save the other for another meal.  Whipped potatoes and a green veggie make this a delicious comfort-food meal. Enjoy!!

You may also like

No comments:

Thanks for taking the time to read and comment!

Powered by Blogger.