I have an affinity for meatloaf. Not the rock singer, although I do like his music. Meatloaf, to me, is the penultimate of down home comfort food. A nice thick slice of meatloaf and a dollop of garlic mash potato and various greens is my idea of the perfect dinner. This is what Wikipedia says about meatloaf: The meatloaf has European origins; meatloaf of minced meat was mentioned in the famous Roman cookery collection Apicius as early as the 5th century. Meatloaf is a traditional German and Belgian dish, and it is a cousin to the Dutch meatball. American meatloaf has its origins in scrapple, a mixture of ground pork and cornmeal served by German-Americans in Pennsylvania since Colonial times. However, meatloaf in the contemporary American sense did not appear in cookbooks until the late 19th century.
My mother used to make meatloaf. I remember it as being too mushy with green pepper, onions, eggs, white soft bread crumbs and cheap minced beef. I don't remember it being very flavorful, however I am sure she added salt and ground pepper. It was mushy in that it never set and would fall apart when you sliced it. It was tolerable, and certainly better than the other meals she prepared like stuffed overcooked cabbage, stuffed green peppers, or mushy butternut squash. Shortly after I married my DH, I had to try and make my own meatloaf. I tried many recipes for meatloaf, but I wanted to make it my own. So, after many years of practice, I have to say this is my best meatloaf and I'd like to share it with you here. Bon Appetit :o)
1 lb. minced (ground) lean beef or ground turkey breast
1 lb. minced (ground) pork
1/4 cup minced dried white onion
2 TBSP. Worcestershire sauce
2 TBSP. Tomato paste
1/4 cup dried bread crumbs or crushed unflavored croutons
2 cloves crushed garlic or 1 tsp. garlic powder (not garlic salt)
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1 tsp. Italian herb seasoning (no salt added)
1/3 - 1/2 cup ketsup
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a mixing bowl, combine all but the ketsup. Mix together until just combined. Don't over mix as this will cause the meat to become tough. Place in a glass loaf pan. Evenly spread ketsup over the top of the loaf. Place in the preheated oven and bake for 55-65 minutes. Remove from the oven and cover loosely with foil for about 10 minutes. Carefully slice the meat just over 1/4" thick. Cover leftovers tightly with foil and refrigerate for no longer than 4 days. Slice cold meatloaf thinly and place between bread slices for lunch the next day.