Meatloaf Is One Of America's Favorite Classic Comfort Foods.
I'm In The Mood For A Good Meatloaf Tonight
What can one really say about Meatloaf? It has been around forever, and a staple in almost every home. Meatloaf is an all american meal, and it can come in handy when feeding a large family, especially in these times when we are trying to make our food budget money go further. Kids love meatloaf , because it is like a big hamburger to them. All my grandkids always liked it. Meatloaf is pretty much the favorite "go to" meal. It is hearty and filling, and can be made into cold meatloaf sandwiches the next day, or just munching on it for a snack. Remember when your mom made it at least once a week back in the day? I know my mom did. I know everyone has their own special recipe for making meatloaf. I have to say I am kind of fussy when it comes to meatloaf. I really never liked it as a child, because my mom used to put real bread chunks in it, she said it stretched the meat. I just thought it tasted soggy, and really did not have any flavor. So over the years I have experimented with different ways of making my own meatloaf. Nowadays I don't even make it in a "what they call" meatloaf pan. You can make it in any bake ware pan that you choose, all you have to do is shape it into a loaf. I have even made meatloaf in a muffin tin, which are mini meat loaves, and the kids love them. Though if you choose to do this, you must indent the middle of the meat, so the juices don't settle into a little puddle, and halfway through the baking you will have to drain off the fat carefully.
So onto my Meatloaf recipe:
1 1/2 lbs hamburger
1 medium onion diced
1/2 a green bell pepper diced
3 eggs ( keeps the meat together and moist)
Bread crumbs, desired amount ( about 1/2 cup or so)
A little garlic powder and oregano to taste
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cans of tomato paste
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
Now in a bowl just mix all the ingredients together, using your hands to mix it,as it is the best way to do it, and everything will be sure to blend well.. Then just shape into a loaf in whatever type of bake ware that you choose to use. I personally like to line my pan with tin foil as it makes the clean up so much easier. Meatloaf grease can be really messy. I do have to say I am a big fan of tin foil anyway, and I use it for everything. Another thing you can do is to buy a throw a way pan from the dollar store. This is a good idea and you can plan ahead.
Put the meatloaf in the preheated oven. After about half hour take it out of oven and carefully drain off the fat. Put the paste on top of the meatloaf and return it to the oven. Bake for another half hour. Remove from the oven, wait a few minutes before cutting. Oven temps may vary, and the meatloaf could cook quicker, so just keep an eye on it. You don't want the meatloaf to come out dry.
There are so many ways to prepare meatloaf,just play around with it. You can add a layer of any type of cheese in the middle, and add tomato paste to the top. You can also make it with onion soup mix, crushed crackers, bread crusts, crushed corn flakes. You can put ketchup on top, or even beef gravy and serve it with french fries. Also one of my favorites is Taco flavored meatloaf, and you can plan a salad around it. The possibilities with meatloaf are just so endless! Don't forget the Mac and cheese or mashed potatoes and a veggie for a well rounded comfort meal, that will leave you feeling all warm and toasty inside. And indeed leave you so full that you will just have to unzip your pants! Just saying. Meatloaf also taste great the second and third day when the flavors have had a chance to meld.
So if you are looking for a simple "go to" meal, meatloaf is an excellent choice.