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-   -   Boring turkey meatloaf (https://www.discusscooking.com/forums/f15/boring-turkey-meatloaf-99465.html)

JustJoel 01-25-2018 06:14 PM

Boring turkey meatloaf
 
I wasn’t sure which forum to post this in. Is meatloaf considered a casserole?

I have never made meatloaf, with any kind of meat, until yesterday. I don’t like it. This is based on a childhood memory. I think my mom attempted it once, and it was a dismal failure. And it’s just too beefy for me. But a few days ago, I caught an episode of a famous Italian chef’s show on PBS, and she was making turkey meatloaf with a mushroom sauce. It looked so good, and my husband loves it, so I decided to give it a try. I won’t mention the chef’s name, because I’m sure the fault was all mine.

It’s boring. Bland. It was nice and moist, but nearly flavorless. The mushroom sauce wasn’t much better. Now, I know turkey isn’t exactly famous for flavor. Is that where the fault lies (I did add a good amount of minced rosemary and thyme, and generous grinding of black pepper, and I didn’t forget to salt!). Should I ditch the turkey and try it with a blend of more flavorful meats, like beef and pork (veal is hard to find here, and too expensive)? Should I have used dry herbs instead of fresh?

I feel rather silly asking for advice on meatloaf, turkey or otherwise. It’s such an ubiquitous American comfort food. Any home cook could probably whip one up with his or her eyes closed. Heck, any home cook’s teenager probably could. It’s kind of like a professional chef admitting he doesn’t know how to make scrambled eggs!

So, chuckle if you want (Hunh? He can’t make meatloaf?), but have some pity, and if you’ve got a tasty recipe or some tips, preferably for turkey, please share them! My husband will be eternally grateful!

Andy M. 01-25-2018 06:33 PM

JJ, there are as many meatloaf recipes as there are grains of sand on the planet and some of them just suck. We have several threads dedicated to meatloaf here with dozens of recipes. No doubt, there are thousands of recipes on the rest of the internet.

I tend to make meatloafs with either beef or beef and lamb. It's a freeform kind of recipe with you adding whatever you like for flavors. The basics are to make a loaf the holds together, is moist and tastes great. The rest is open to interpretation.

Turkey is a difficult meat to work with as flavor is in short supply. Try other meats solo or in combination. Breadcrumbs and an egg or two are basic. I like to pureeing included veggies so you don't get a big chunk of onion or garlic in a bite. Cheese and bacon are prominent players.

Keep trying.

caseydog 01-25-2018 06:36 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Don't feel silly, good meatloaf is not as easy as people might think.

I typically use a 50/50 blend of ground beef and ground pork. For more flavor, you can mix ground beef and one of those chubs of breakfast sausage, or even Italian sausage.

I also smoke my meatloaf on my Weber Kettle. I put the coals on one side, and the meatloaf on the other. I like hickory chunks for the smoke. I form my loaf and put it in the fridge to firm up for a few hours. Then, it goes right on the grill grate, with a foil drip pan below.

Smoked meatloaf is really, really good.

CD

buckytom 01-25-2018 07:12 PM

My wife makes a pretty good turkey meatlump.

I'll have to ask for her recipe.

That reminds me. I've gotta post that teryaki recipe.

Hey, what about a meatlump topped with teryaki sauce? Hmmm...

Kayelle 01-25-2018 07:34 PM

I like ground turkey about as much as I like Tofu. Actually I can't stand either one and they are similar in flavor..no flavor at all.

Ground beef, with maybe some gr. pork or sausage is my choice. Try the recipe you used before with some meat.

RPCookin 01-25-2018 09:02 PM

Either Cooks Country or America's Test Kitchen made turkey meat loaf just recently. I don't remember what they did to jazz it up, but it came out looking almost like a regular beef loaf. Should be able to find it by searching their site for that.

GBD Tempora 01-26-2018 12:46 AM

If you're not averse to spice, I'd suggest adding a combination of chipotle peppers and fresh jalapenos to give it a smokey kick.

Aunt Bea 01-26-2018 04:51 AM

I like to use the store prepared meatball mix of beef, pork and veal.

If all I have to work with is ground turkey then I add a packet of GOYA beef bouillon to the mixture of breadcrumbs and spices called for in the recipe. A good shot of Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce and a good squirt of ketchup also helps to boost the flavor.

In my area it is also popular to use a mixture of ground smoked ham and beef to make a ham loaf.

I make my meatloaf free form so it has more crust and is a little dryer than those baked in a pan. I also like to add some finely chopped vegetables to the mixture. A little bell pepper, onion, garlic, celery, carrot, mushrooms, etc...

I don't really care for hot meatloaf but a cold meatloaf sandwich is hard to beat.

Good luck!

CakePoet 01-26-2018 04:52 AM

The first meatloaf I made, the oven wasnt steady in heat and I used my then mother in laws recipe, it looked like dog food, smelled worse, but my husband loved it and I just thought it tasted livery and salty. Then I realised , yes it hard to make meat loaf, but easy when the spouse has zero taste buds and loves the taste of dog food.

When I flavour ground chicken or turkey, I make sure that the herbs are ground into a paste or a fine dust, otherwise it always gets bland.

I prefer to make mine out of half beef and half pork and wrapped with bacon.

tenspeed 01-26-2018 05:35 AM

From what I have been able to gather, ground turkey is generally made from less expensive dark meat. The 97 - 99% fat free stuff is made from more expensive white meat. Which one did you use? Dark meat will have a bit more flavor, but as with all ground turkey, that still isn't much.

Products - Shady Brook FarmsŪ turkey

PrincessFiona60 01-26-2018 07:40 AM

All this talk of a poultry meatloaf has me thinking about a Cordon Bleu adapted meatloaf.

buckytom 01-26-2018 08:49 AM

Ok, so my wife's turkey meatlump recipe is pretty basic, but it's healthy and fairly light.

She uses 93/7 ground turkey, eggwhites, Progresso brand seasoned breadcrumbs, fresh parsley, ketchup, a good mount of grated Romano cheese, finely minced Vidalia onion, and milk.

Sorry I don't have amounts, but she does it be eye, and by feel. Especially when adding the milk at the end. It's to get the right amount of gooey-ness, but not too gooey.

Sir_Loin_of_Beef 01-26-2018 10:25 AM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELzhPuBMJFE&t=208s

Aunt Bea 01-26-2018 10:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sir_Loin_of_Beef (Post 1538674)

Thanks for the great video!

I need to try adding a little vanilla extract to my green beans, that is entirely new to me!

profnot 01-26-2018 10:58 PM

Meatloaf is not an entree or main dish to enjoy for its own flavour.

Meatloaf is a mother's strategy, and a very smart and sneaky one at that.

Kids love meat and tomato sauce. Meatloaf is like pizza without the crust and cheese. Start with ground beef and pork, toss in some bread crumbs (crust substitute), eggs, and a few other things, top with tomato sauce and kids will want more, more, more. Remember: tomatoes are really a fruit and quite sweet.

But loving, sneaky mums know meatloaf is a secret vegetable delivery system.

Sneaky mums saute onions, bell peppers, broccoli, zucchini, spinach, and other veggies. Then they puree them and add to meatloaf mixture. Then toss in herbs for more veggies and flavour. A bit of Worcestershire works magic.

Kids (and husbands) will happily devour lots of meatloaf and ask for more.

Some very astute mums will "concede" to make meatloaf "just to please the family", but only if they agree to eat the side serving of green beans, whatever.

This is why you can never make your MIL's meatloaf recipe and have your DH be as happy with your recipe as with his mum's.

Have fun with meatloaf recipes!

caseydog 01-27-2018 12:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by profnot (Post 1538764)
Meatloaf is not an entree or main dish to enjoy for its own flavour.

Meatloaf is a mother's strategy, and a very smart and sneaky one at that.

Kids love meat and tomato sauce. Meatloaf is like pizza without the crust and cheese. Start with ground beef and pork, toss in some bread crumbs (crust substitute), eggs, and a few other things, top with tomato sauce and kids will want more, more, more. Remember: tomatoes are really a fruit and quite sweet.

But loving, sneaky mums know meatloaf is a secret vegetable delivery system.

Sneaky mums saute onions, bell peppers, broccoli, zucchini, spinach, and other veggies. Then they puree them and add to meatloaf mixture. Then toss in herbs for more veggies and flavour. A bit of Worcestershire works magic.

Kids (and husbands) will happily devour lots of meatloaf and ask for more.

Some very astute mums will "concede" to make meatloaf "just to please the family", but only if they agree to eat the side serving of green beans, whatever.

This is why you can never make your MIL's meatloaf recipe and have your DH be as happy with your recipe as with his mum's.

Have fun with meatloaf recipes!

My mom's meatloaf was dry and bland. Smothered in gravy, it worked.

I don't really agree with your statement that, "Meatloaf is not an entree or main dish to enjoy for its own flavour."

Done right, it is really good "comfort food." When I make meatloaf, I make it to enjoy.

CD

PrincessFiona60 01-27-2018 01:13 AM

me, too! I love meatloaf and I don't trick anyone to eat more veggies.

Cooking Goddess 01-27-2018 03:09 AM

In some cases, you do what you have to do to get family to eat veggies. Thankfully, I never had that problem. We probably could happily become vegetarians with all of the veggies we like, if it weren't for giving up that truly yummy meat stuff. :mrgreen:

GotGarlic 01-27-2018 01:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by profnot (Post 1538764)
Meatloaf is not an entree or main dish to enjoy for its own flavour.

Meatloaf is a mother's strategy, and a very smart and sneaky one at that.

We don't have children and we enjoy meatloaf regularly. Maybe you need to try a new meatloaf recipe :wink:

RPCookin 01-27-2018 01:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by caseydog (Post 1538770)
My mom's meatloaf was dry and bland. Smothered in gravy, it worked.

I don't really agree with your statement that, "Meatloaf is not an entree or main dish to enjoy for its own flavour."

Done right, it is really good "comfort food." When I make meatloaf, I make it to enjoy.

CD

Agreed. I love meat loaf, perhaps more than I should. Mom never put veggies in it aside from some chopped onions, and mushroom soup and sliced pimento olives on top. Not even a drop of tomato anything in it, and quick oats instead of breadcrumbs. I still make it like she did. (All this talk about it - I may have to thaw out some ground beef this week :yum: )


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