A peek into someone's recipe book is such a fun thing
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A few weeks ago, I found myself looking over my mom's shoulder as she flipped through hers
“Wait, go back a few pages. That looks good”
“Oh yeah, the meatloaf I've wanted to try.” A knowing smile, “Should I photocopy it for you as well?”
“That'd be great.”
It wasn't long before I found myself in the kitchen. A beautiful fall afternoon, I'm trying my hand at this version of a comfort food classic.
So many things to love about this recipe
The addition of veggies, soaking its bread crumbs in the liquid of reconstituted dried mushrooms, cubed mozzarella blended throughout, shredded cheese combined with bread crumbs and herbs to create a crunchy topping
Far more exciting than the traditional hunk of beef
Smaller, mini sizes, are fun and worked well for us
They're much more manageable. As left-overs in sandwiches for lunch, or as make-ahead and freezer ideas. Take one or two out when the day has been long, and dinner seems just out of reach
If you're an end-piece eater, you'll love them because of their crunchy outside texture all the way around
Your hands are the best tool for combing it all together, but be careful not to over mix. Kind of like pancakes, if you overdo it, the result can be quite dense.
ps: A tip from Barefoot Contessa about making turkey meatloaf, which is especially useful since the meat used here is lean. She says to put a pan of hot water on a rack underneath your meatloaf while it bakes.
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~ Adapted from Williams and Sonoma
- 4 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 carrots, cut into ¼" dice
- 2 celery stalks, cut into ¼" dice
- 1 oz dried wild mushrooms, soaked in 1 cup hot water, chopped, reserving the soaking liquid (I used porcini)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 ¼ cups bread crumbs (gluten-free if you’re avoiding gluten)
- 2 Tbsp + ¼ cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 6 oz mozzarella cheese, cut into ½" cubes
- 4 oz mozzarella (or parmesan cheese) shredded
- salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 lb ground beef 90% lean
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 2 eggs + 2 egg whites, lightly beaten
- 2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 2 - 3 Tbsp tomato sauce
- ½ tsp fresh thyme, minced
- Preheat to 350° F.
- Prepare the Veggies
- In a sauté pan, over medium-high heat, warm 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the carrots, celery, and onion. Sauté until they are tender and starting to caramelize (8 - 10 minutes).
- Add the mushrooms and garlic. Sauté a minute more. Remove them from the heat and let them cool for 10 minutes
- Prepare the bread crumbs that are added to the meat
- In a bowl, combine 1 ½ cups of the bread crumbs and ⅓ cup of the mushroom soaking liquid and soak for 5 minutes.
- Prepare the bread crumbs that cover the sides and top
- In another bowl, combine the remaining 1 ½ cup bread crumbs, the 2 tablespoons parsley, and the remaining 2 tablespoon olive oil, shredded cheese, salt, and pepper.
- In a large bowl, using your hands, gently mix together the ground beef, ground turkey, soaked bread crumbs, vegetable mixture, eggs, the ¼ cup parsley, thyme, cubed cheese, salt and pepper.
- Prepare the muffin tins (if using)
- Spray a bit of olive oil or cooking spray into each of the muffin tins, add some of the breadcrumb topping into each.
- (If a more traditional meatloaf is for you, the original recipe calls for cooking it in a roasting pan, covering the sides and top with the cheese-bread crumb mixture)
- Transfer the mixture to individual muffin loaves, covering the tops first with a Tbsp or two of BBQ sauce before the cheese-bread crumb mixture.
- Bake until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of the meatloaf registers 165° F, about 1 hour and 10 minutes.
- Let the meatloaf rest for 5 minutes before slicing.