In these days and times, we all need a little extra comfort. Pappy’s kitchen was always a very comforting place, with the warm stove, soup aroma filling the air and Pappy always having a cup of hot cocoa ready on a cold winter’s day.
Nothing says comfort like a good sturdy meal of homemade meatloaf and mashed potatoes with a big pat of melting butter right on top. Throw in some green beans, maybe a salad and there you go.
So, Pappy’s recipe for meatloaf was pretty simple, and it changed according to what he had on hand. I find myself doing the same thing, especially now that grocery shopping is a challenge, and they don’t always have what you need. So here’s one variation of his basic recipe, feel free to adjust (there are suggestions along the way) and make your family a nice comforting meal.
1 pound ground beef
1/2 pound ground italian sausage (this here is totally optional, if using, you won’t need any salt)
1 small yellow onion, chopped finely (can use dried onion, about 1 Tablespoon)
1 clove garlic, minced (can use 1 teaspoon garlic powder)
3/4 cup dried breadcrumbs, italian seasoned or not (can use fresh breadcrumbs – 2 pieces bread
whirled up in a food processor) Also, if going for gluten free, use oatmeal instead
1 (8oz.) can tomato sauce (can use ketchup, marinara, spaghetti sauce–yep you guessed it: “use
what you got”)
1 Tablespoon dried italian seasoning (can use fresh herbs, combo of rosemary, parsley, basil,
whatever you like)
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (some brands contain fish, just so you’re aware)
!/3 cup ketchup (or same sauce you used in meat)
1 Tablespoon mustard (regular yellow, dijon, whatever you like)
1 Tablespoon brown sugar (can also use honey
Mix together and spoon onto meatloaf during the last 20 minutes of cooking)
As Paps would say ” put it all in a bowl, (without glaze ingredients) mix it good, but not overmixed, put it in a pan and throw it in the oven.” Don’t worry, a few more details are coming up!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
So yes, you put all the meatloaf ingredients into a bowl, mix it up but don’t over do it, it could make it tough.
Pat it firmly into your desired pan (I used a 9×9, but you can use a loaf pan or even a pie pan and cut it into wedges to serve.)
Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, spoon glaze on top and bake for another 20 minutes or until a meat thermometer registers 160 degrees.
Serve with mashed potatoes for extra comfort and maybe a salad
A 9×9 pan serves about 9 people or 4 really hungry ones! If this don’t make the hound dog wag his tail, nothin will!
Bonus for those of you who scrolled this far: save a couple of those leftover pieces of meatloaf, use it in your next spaghetti sauce recipe! Just mush them with a fork, (easier if they’re warm), or if you like a smoother sauce, run the leftover pieces of meatloaf through the food processor, throw it in a pot and continue on with your sauce (in other words, open the jar and pour it in! Oh, did I say that? Well, I won’t tell if you won’t)!
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