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Old 03-24-2005, 09:05 AM   #1
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Troubleshoot this recipe

Can you guys help me troubleshoot this recipe? I have a feeling I know what the solution is, but I am hoping for an alternative.

OK this is a meatloaf recipe. My problem is that the loaf did not hold together once it was cooked. I am guessing the answer is to add another egg, but I hate egg and would probably not make this recipe if it called for two of them. Any ideas?

Here is the recipe. The one part (not that I think it matters) that is not written here is that I ground my own meat (with a food processor, not grinder).

6 ounces garlic-flavored croutons

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 onion, roughly chopped
1 carrot, peeled and broken
3 whole cloves garlic
1/2 red bell pepper
18 ounces ground chuck
18 ounces ground sirloin
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 egg

In a food processor bowl, combine croutons, black pepper, cayenne pepper, chili powder, and thyme. Pulse until the mixture is of a fine texture. Place this mixture into a large bowl. Combine the onion, carrot, garlic, and red pepper in the food processor bowl. Pulse until the mixture is finely chopped, but not pureed. Combine the vegetable mixture, ground sirloin, and ground chuck with the bread crumb mixture. Season the meat mixture with the kosher salt. Add the egg and combine thoroughly, but avoid squeezing the meat.

Pack this mixture into a 10-inch loaf pan to mold the shape of the meatloaf. Onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, turn the meatloaf out of the pan onto the center of the tray. Insert a temperature probe at a 45 degree angle into the top of the meatloaf. Avoid touching the bottom of the tray with the probe. Set the probe for 155 degrees.

For the glaze I used BBQ sauce and brushed that on about 15 minutes into the cooktime.

The flavor of the meatloaf was great and we really enjoyed it, but it did not hold together at all. What do you think? TIA.

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Old 03-24-2005, 09:16 AM   #2
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Was it too wet? Maybe not enough bread, crackers, etc.
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Old 03-24-2005, 09:29 AM   #3
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No it was not really wet at all. The end product crumbled when I tried to slice it. It was very moist (not dried out), but it certainly was not wet.
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Old 03-24-2005, 10:09 AM   #4
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How firmly did you pack it?
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Old 03-24-2005, 10:10 AM   #5
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I'd have to eyeball it to make sure, but it seems like 6 oz of dried croutons are a lot of dry crumbs to be adding. Maybe cut down on the dried, or use fresh bread crumbs instead? Just looked at the recipe I use, and for 1 1/2 lbs (24 oz) of meat, it calls for 1 egg and 3/4 cup -fresh- breadcrumbs. I'm guessing the dried croutons sucked up too much of the moisture.

The other idea may be that you processed the veg mixture a little too much? (not questioning your technique, GB - just a thought!)
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Old 03-24-2005, 10:12 AM   #6
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You could post this on a forum devoted to AB. How did he grind his meat? ( can't remember that part)
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Old 03-24-2005, 10:16 AM   #7
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GB, just a thought, but could the meat have been too lean?

Only reason I ask is my FIL is famous for making venison sausage that's too lean, and they tend to crumble as well..

Just an idea.
John
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Old 03-24-2005, 10:17 AM   #8
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Can you really taste the egg in that much of the other stuff? Wow. You must Really hate the egg. The way I see it you have too much meat for that little egg. If you really hate the unborn chicken that bad try to add some corn or potato starch, say a tablespoon or so to begin with.
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Old 03-24-2005, 10:18 AM   #9
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I packed the meat firmly, but not too firm. I didn't want to squeeze the meat too much. Do you think I could have packed it in more?

At first when I read the recipe I thought 6oz sounded like a lot of breadcrumbs, but when I saw it in the bowl it did not look like a lot at all. Next time maybe I will try less.

The veg mixture was pretty chunky actually. There were still little pieces of carrot that you could pick up by spearing it with one of the tines of a fork.

To grind the meat I cut it up into chunks about 1.5-2 inches or so and working in small batches. I pulsed it in the food processor for about a second at a time for about 10 pulses.
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Old 03-24-2005, 10:19 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ronjohn55
GB, just a thought, but could the meat have been too lean?

Only reason I ask is my FIL is famous for making venison sausage that's too lean, and they tend to crumble as well..

Just an idea.
John
The sirloin was pretty lean, but the chuck has a good amount of fat. I actually used a little more of the chuck than the sirloin.
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