I've not posted for a few days, not because I haven't been cooking like a lunatic, but because life is busy. The bulk of the activity revolves around our toddler. There is always nothing specific to report, it's more that he has two modes: on and off. Mainly on. Like tonight, I returned home from a meeting to find Amir still awake. "I went pee-pee, Mama!" he tells me. A weary looking Daddy says, "Yes, but tell her where, son." I'll spare you the gory details.
The good news is that in my flurry of cooking, I revisited the sausage meatloaf I'd posted a while back. Perhaps you remember it, perhaps you don't. But the verdict was that the taste was wonderful but the consistency was much too wet. I followed some of your suggestions and now have a meatloaf that will be a part of the regular rotation. I'll do a separate post for the side dish, polenta with corn and thyme. That was pretty ummy-nummy, so be sure to check that recipe out. Without further ado, here's the new meatloaf recipe.
Sausage Meatloaf1 egg lightly beaten
1/3 cup chicken stock
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
3 slices whole grain bread, cubed
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
2 tbsp dijon mustard
2 tbsp chopped, jarred garlic
1 lb hamburger
1 lb Italian chicken sausage (pork is fine, too, I'm sure)
1/2 medium onion, grated and squeezed
3 tbsp ketchup
2 tsp cider vinegar
2 tbsp packed brown sugar
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl combine eggs, broth and the Worcestershire sauce. Let stand for 15 minutes. With fork, mash bread cubes into small pieces, then stir in parmesan cheese, mustard and garlic. Add meat and raw sausage from the casing and onion. Mix well with hands but do not overmix. Form into a rectangular loaf in a 13 x 9-inch glass baking dish.
2. In a small bowl, mix ketchup, vinegar, brown sugar and the remaining Worcestershire sauce. Evenly pour sauce over the top of the meat.
3. Bake, uncovered, for 1 1/4 hours. Drain grease from pan using a spoon or small ladle, and let stand for 10 minutes.
The Verdict: Now that's meatloaf.
Cutting down on the wet ingredients did help a nice loaf to form. It was still a bit crumbly, but in a good way that showed that it was moist. I also omitted the green pepper from the original recipe. From what I'm reading, the fewer "chunks" in a meatloaf, the easier time it has to bind. Besides, there's a lot of flavors going on between the sausage and the baked-on sauce.
I was worried that I had another gloppy mess on my hands when I saw the amount of grease around the loaf. However, it only stands to reason that this would be a fattier meatloaf with the addition of sausage. And I also learned in my meatloaf research that your hamburger itself should have a higher fat content. The leaner the meat, the more likely to crumble. Just siphon off the grease immediately, then let the loaf set.
This is a definite two thumbs up from Amir, the peeing toddler. He ate a slice just about the same size as mine, then said in his upwardly inflecting way, "More?" He said it a second time after eating another half piece, but generally a request for thirds is met with mainly playing with his food. Request denied, but thanks for the sentiment, kid.