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Old 09-02-2006, 10:09 AM   #11
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Here are two meatloaf recipes from one of the cookbooks I've written. They give some idea of how versatile meatloaf can be. Enjoy.

Seeeeeeeeya; Goodweed of the North

Mexican Volcano:
You'll wow the crowds, and give yourself some idea your own
artistic ability. The flavor is South of the Border. The theme
is fun. Award winning Balderson Aged Cheddar adds flavor to
the dish while Mozzarella creates visual effect.
Your family and friends will be amazed by your creativity, and the quality of the meat-loaf. In this recipe, we use bread crumbs to increase the volume while maintaining flavor and texture. Thus, you save money without sacrificing quality.
1 lb. ground beef
1/2 lb. bulk Mexican Chorizo (or Italian sausage)
1 tbs. chili powder
1/2 tbs. cayenne pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh Jalapeno peppers
1/4 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup ketchup
3/4 cup enchilada sauce, or salsa
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup Balderson 2 year old Medium Cheddar Cheese (or other artisan medium cheddar)
1 large egg

Preheat the oven to 375'- F.
Remove the Chorizo from its
casing. Mix together the ground beef, Chorizo, chili powder, cayenne pepper, jalapeno peppers, egg, Balderson Cheddar, and bread crumbs. Knead together until well mixed. Lightly grease a 12" square casserole dish and place the meat mixture into it.
Shape the mixture into a volcanic mountain with valleys and
cliffs. Show off your hidden artistic talents. Create a crater in the top suitable for about a 1/4 cup of sauce. Place the “volcano” into the oven, with a meat thermometer inserted to the center.
Cook for 45 minutes. Check the thermometer. When the
internal temperature reaches 175'- F., remove from the oven.
Pour the sauce into the crater, making sure that rivulets of
sauce run down the mountain sides. Place strands of Mozzarella
cheese shreds onto the rivulets and in the crater to mimic the
glowing hot lava. Place in the oven until the cheese melts
slightly. Remove from the oven and place onto a serving
platter. Slice into eight equal wedges and serve with little
men made from toothpicks and Vienna sausage and toothpicks
(half covered by lava). Make trees with Broccoli to finish the
hapless village. Your kids will love it, and your guests will
gasp with delight. (Omit the little men if you want. That
might be a bit much).

Meat Loaf
The common meat loaf is as complicated, or as simple as you
want to make it. Reactions from people tend to be extreme;
either they love or hate meat loaf. Again, we are working with ground beef, or a combination of ground beef and ground pork, and maybe a filler such as bread crumbs. If cooked wrong, meat-loaf can be as dry as sawdust, with about as much flavor. But done properly, it drips with
flavor-rich juices.
There are those who claim that adding filler, such as bread or cracker crumbs, dilutes the flavor and contributes to a dry end result. From experience, I can say with certainty that they are wrong. The moisture content of meat loaf is regulated by the final temperature when removed from the oven, the amount of water and natural fats contained in the pre-cooked meatloaf mixture, and other ingredients, such as green peppers
and onions.
Of course, if you add too much filler, it can turn your dish
into a dry, bland meatloaf with an uncanny resemblance to
sawdust. However, the same thing can occur by using meat which
is too lean. Meatloaf, like all other cooked products, relies
on the proper ratios of ingredients, and on cooking skills.
Remember though, as you begin to add other ingredients, the
mixture must have enough moisture and body to bind together.
That is, it shouldn't fall apart. Biding agents act like glues
to hold the ingredients together. They include flour, eggs,
and various starches. Also, finely chopped vegetables work
better in meatloaf.
This is a basic recipe that is tasty and simple to make. Once you master the basic recipe, you can tailor it to you tastes with ingredients such as tomato chunks, diced mushrooms, various herbs and spices, chopped onion, chopped peppers, etc. You can omit the filler if you desire. But remember, the filler is what gives meat-loaf it-s delicate texture. Meat-loaf can be part of a gourmet feast when prepared properly. For this recipe, we will provide a touch of Western flavor.

Meat mixture
2 lb. Ground beef
1 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Coarsely ground black pepper
1 tsp. fresh Cilantro leaves
1 tbs. Chili powder
1/2 tsp. Colgin brand Liquid Mesquite Smoke flavoring
1 large egg
1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
1 cup tomato sauce
1 tbs. Chili Powder
1/2 tsp. Ground Cumin
1/2 small Yellow Onion, chopped
1/4 tsp. Tabasco Sauce
1 tsp. Sugar
Preheat the oven to 375'-F. Mix the meat-loaf ingredients
together in a bowl. Press into a lightly greased loaf pan.
Place in the oven and cook for 45 minutes with a meat
thermometer inserted in the loaf center. Check the meat loaf
and remove when the temperature reaches 165'-F.
While the meat loaf is cooking, mix the sauce ingredients
together in a suitable pan and cook over medium heat for ten
minutes. Remove from heat and let rest.
When the meat loaf is done, remove from the oven and ladle
enough sauce over the top to cover. Place back in the oven and
cook for another ten minutes.
Remove the meat loaf from the oven and let rest for 15 minutes before slicing. Serve with a good Mexican Salad and tomato salsa. Ladle remaining sauce over the meat loaf slices.
For basic meat loaf, leave out the smoke flavoring, Cilantro,
and chili powder.

“No amount of success outside the home can compensate for failure within the home…"

Check out my blog for the friendliest cooking instruction on the net. Go ahead. You know you want to.- http://gwnorthsfamilycookin.wordpress.com/
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Old 09-02-2006, 12:25 PM   #12
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well it`s been in for 50 mins now at gas mark 5, it Looks ok and smells fantastic (although not as strong as I`de have expected).
the ketchup on the top has gone a deep red as if almost caramelised, but there`s one or 2 crack on the very top as if some internal expansion has taken place, is this all normal?

oh and it hasn`t Shrunk in the way I expected and no large pools of meat fat around the sides! *Phew*

Katherine Snow. xx
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Old 09-02-2006, 12:32 PM   #13
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I'm like a lot of people and just add this and that and never measure. With meatloaf this result in 1 out of between 3 and 5 has the perfect seasoning and texture. So this last time I decided I was going to write down everything I did. I decided to try it with pork and ground beef this time. I already know I don't care for ground veal in it. I wasn't crazy about the texture of the ground pork but the flavor was great. I think next time I'll try making it the same way but adding more ground beef in place of the ground pork. Let me try it out again and see how it is this way and as soon as I get it tweeked perfectly I'll send you my recipe.

NOTE: I like to soak white bread in milk and wring the milk out vs using bread crumbs or cracker crumbs......the texture is so much better.
Se non supporta il calore, vattene dalla cucina!
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Old 09-03-2006, 07:33 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by YT2095
well lets hope I`m not amongst them, tonight I`m making my 1`st ever meatloaf, and although there are a few minor modifications made in mine, essentialy it`s the same as outlined in here.
I`ve had it before as a kid when I lived in Canada, and actualy prefered it cold on a sandwitch with a pinch of salt.
my only real concern with this one is the leaness of the meat, I don`t want it swimming in meat fat, I expect it the shrink a little sure, but I don`t want the free space taken up by Heart Attack juice

although I could always pour it off over some birdseed and let it set, it`s getting close to Autumn now so they may be in for an early treat
I always use ground chuck - for the flavor, put in loaf pan-(bread pan)-when finished, drain accumalated grease into old coffee can, let rest 10mins. Enjoy !
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Old 09-03-2006, 10:55 AM   #15
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sadly, I think I may have been a little TOO eager to get the thing out, and some stuck to the bottom of the loaf tin, other than that...
I Shall make this again! :)

Thank you all :)
Katherine Snow. xx
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Old 09-03-2006, 03:28 PM   #16
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While I don't have a recipe per se, I make meatloaf from what I learned at my mother's knee. I generally start with 2 pounds of lean ground beef. I mix in 1 egg, about 3/4 cup of dry Quaker oatmeal, 1 medium chopped onion, 1 can of sliced mushrooms (or about 3/4 cup of fresh if I'm feeling ambitious), fresh ground pepper. Mix it all by hand and press into a glass loaf pan sprayed with cooking spray. Cook in a 350° oven for about 1 hour, then pour off any grease if necessary (mine never needs it as the meat is very lean), pour 1 or 2 cans of cream of mushroom soup over the meat, spot sliced green pimento stuffed olives on top and return to the oven for another 30-45 minutes until done.
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Old 09-03-2006, 06:16 PM   #17
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What a great idea! I love meatloaf as it is, but this sounds like a lot more fun!
If we're not supposed to eat animals, then how come they're made out of meat?
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Old 09-03-2006, 06:33 PM   #18
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one of the things i find that makes a great meatloaf is not to overwork and compact the minced/ground meat mixture in any way - when mixing all the ingredients, i tend to do like a "folding" movement with my hands and have everything kind of come together than forcing it through my fingers to have everything thoroughly combined, i have seen many people do this and it makes for a dense pate-like result. another great tip is using bread soaked in milk and incorporating that rather than dried breadcumbs, i find it also allows for a softer texture.... i like the ketchup covering since it kind of caramelizes on top as it bakes and i have also seen someone lining the loaf pan and the top with bacon strips which renders its fat and flavor asd it cooks
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Old 09-03-2006, 07:46 PM   #19
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I have made one meatloaf in my life, and it turned out great. That was about 30 years ago. I don't know why I haven't done it since.
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Old 09-06-2006, 09:43 AM   #20
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Wow the mexican one sounds amazing!!

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