whoever thought meatloaf could be this good?

Well…. between a recipe from Cook’s Illustrated, a tip my husband learned from his Dad, and one of those meatloaf pans with an insert so the fat drains out that my friend Lori gave me, a last-minute decision to make meatloaf for the first time in over 10 years turned out a culinary delight! As in YUM!

My guess is that the recipe was not all that different from your average meatloaf recipe. It did call for “meatloaf mix” or 1 lb ground beef and 1/2 lb each of ground pork and ground veal, but a lot of recipes call for that. I grew up with all beef meatloaf. I loved my Mom’s meatloaf. She kept it moist by poking a number of holes in it and pouring milk over it just before baking. But, Steve told me I should use 1/3 ground pork to 2/3 ground beef and boy, did that make a difference! Cheaper than the three-meat mix but mighty tasty. The good folks at Farmland in Wakefield ground/mixed the pork and beef for me right on the spot, for 2.79/lb.

Steve is allergic to eggs, so I used the blender to mush up flax seeds with water (about 1:3 or so flax seed to warm water and then some more water so it would pour out of the blender) to replace the eggs, and I also added about 1/2 cup grated carrots. Sauted onion and garlic, added 2/3 cup oatmeal, 1/2 cup yogurt, and Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, tabasco, thyme, salt and pepper…and fresh parsley leaves (1/3 cup)

350 degrees for about 1 1/2 hours…it was really good! I served it with swiss chard and corn on the cob. I was going make mashed potatoes but figured the corn was starch enough – and was way easier to prepare since, once the meatloaf was in the oven, I wanted to do other things.

Anyway – it’s a keeper for this household. Economical, easy, oatmeal and carrots for fiber, etc., and lots of fat drains out in that handy meatloaf pan with the insert – and it was still really moist. I love it when a whim turns into a great meal!