Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Making Tuesday Tasty-Meatloaf

Ok, so I know there are about a million versions of this recipe. I don't like meatloaf unless it's the way my mom prepared it. I think mostly it's because a lot of people cover theirs in ketchup or tomato sauce or something that I don't like. I'm winging the exact amounts because my mom and I really cook to taste, instead of using exact recipes. Meatloaf is a great one dish type of meal that can be adapted to anything you like and can be kept lean by using ground turkey or another lean meat. You can also use lamb and any kinds of veggies that you want to hide in there. Below is a base recipe. You can add fresh or dry herbs, different cheeses, variations of veg, variations of filler like ground breadcrumbs or croutons instead of crackers. You can add a sauce to your meatloaf instead of layering it with bacon. I don't eat it very often so I'm not too worried about calories from this particular recipe. It's definitely not lean! If your kids don't like chunks of veg, then you can play around with pureeing the vegetables you do want in there and adding that in. Make sure you balance your moisture though. Have fun!

1 1/2 lb. ground beef or turkey
Bacon strips, enough to cover your loaf once formed
1 egg
1 medium yellow onion or 3 shoots of green onion
1 C crushed saltine crackers
3/4 C shredded carrot
1 C shredded cheddar cheese
Garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper to taste

You can saute your onions if you want but, we just dice them and put them in the meat. Get a large bowl to combine ingredients and start mixing with your hands preferably. I like to put the meat in the bowl and combine the dry ingredients. Once the dry ingredients are combined, add the egg and mix well. Spray either a standard loaf pan or baking pan with a non stick spray and form your loaf to the shape and size you want it. If you form it thick, it will take longer cooking time. Once formed, lay your bacon lengthwise onto the meatloaf and pop in 350 degree oven for 45 mins. Check if done. Every oven is different and you don't want to dry out the meatloaf. Standard cooking time should be right around an hour.