How To Make Meatloaf Recipe 2024

How To Make Meatloaf. Just like meatballs, any great meatloaf starts with a panade, a mixture of milk and seasoned breadcrumbs that helps give the meatloaf structure and keep it moist. Plus, I like to add one teaspoon of garlic powder to my five ounces of breadcrumbs and six ounces of milk. Once we got ourselves a nice milky bready paste. it’s time to add vegetables.

And so we don’t end up with large crunchy chunks, I like to grate mine on the large holes of the box grater. One medium carrot and one medium rib of celery. Plus, I’ve got half a small onion here, which you could grate as well, but it’s gonna have a stronger onion flavor. Then I also like to add a quarter cup of tomato paste, one and a half teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce for that nice 1950s flavor, a quarter cup of finely chopped parsley, and two large eggs, thoroughly beaten with a fork, or, course, a tiny whisk.

How To Make Meatloaf

And then, it’s super not traditional, but I like to add an eighth of a cup of finely chopped fresh basil. We’re adding a teaspoon of kosher salt and one and a half teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper for seasoning. Then we mix until evenly combined, mixing this before adding the meat. Two/quarter pounds of ground chuck. It helps evenly distribute all the spices and flavorings throughout.

Then we’re gonna throw on some gloves if you’re a wimp like me and need everything together. Once the beautifully flavored panade is evenly distributed throughout the meat, we’re ready to form and bake, which we’re gonna do in a generously greased loaf pan, but not in the way that you might be thinking. We’re knockin’ the meatloaf out of the loaf pan and baking it free-standing in a 350-degree Fahrenheit oven.

Baking and Glazing the Meatloaf

While that bakes for its first 15-minute stint, we’re gonna make a sort of glaze. Four ounces of tomato paste, one tablespoon of honey, one tablespoon of tomato paste, a teaspoon of we-share sauce, a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, and a third of a cup of brown sugar. We’re also gonna add a few generous twists of freshly ground black pepper.

This is going to form the gooey caramelized layer on the outside of our meatloaf as we brush it down every 15 minutes during its 45 minutes to one hour in the oven. Baking the meatloaf standing on its own two feet like this allows it to brown in the oven, giving us deeper, roastier flavors, thanks to the Maillard reaction. It also allows us to layer on our glaze the same way that we would on ribs, giving us lacquered stacks of vinegary sweetness.

We’re just gonna brush it down twice every 15 minutes for the first 30 minutes and then let it finish baking for another 20 to 25 minutes until it reaches an internal temperature of 155 degrees Fahrenheit. Yes, that is not what the USDA recommends, but it’s gonna give you a much juicier meatloaf. Once it is finished with its final bit of oven lovin’, I’m gonna temp it, take it off the pan, put it onto my intended serving platter, and admire the grease in the bottom of my pan.

Resting and Serving the Best Meatloaf Recipe

This is grease that your meatloaf would normally be swimming in, making it greasy. Once the loaf is rested for 10 minutes, it’s time to slice and serve. And for a super basic, pretty quick meatloaf, this one is tasty. The glaze is sweetened sticky and tangy, the meat is moist and flavorful, and well, that’s all there is to a meatloaf.

But with this first loaf, I’ve learned a lot, and there are some things that I want to experiment with. Perhaps most importantly, the not using parchment paper, but also other stuff like grinding our meat and making our meatloaf mix, the classic formula for which calls for beef, pork, and veal. But I want to switch things up a little bit, so instead of veal, I’m gonna use a boneless leg of lamb, which I think should bring some interesting gamey, grassy flavors to our meatloaf.

Grinding and Preparing the Meat Mixture

The first step is to remove any silver skin or connective tissue, anything that your knife has kind of a hard time cutting through. If your knife has a hard time cutting through it, so will your teeth. Once we’ve removed the chewy stuff and the excess fat, we’re cutting the meat down into one-inch cubes, which we’re gonna spread out evenly on parchment-lined baking sheets and plop in the freezer.

Plop in the freezer, where our meat grinder parts have been hanging out for the last half hour, or until very, very frozen. The colder everything is, the easier it’s going to grind, the less fat is going to smear, and the less cleanup you’ll have to do. We’re grinding everything on a medium plate, because we don’t want too many big chunks of meat in our meatloaf, and I’m grinding all the meat separately, so I have control over how much of each goes into our mix.

Cooking and Preparing the Vegetable Mixture

To hit our target of 36 ounces, I’m doing eight ounces of lamb, 12 ounces of beef, and 12 ounces of pork, which I think should give us a good balance of flavors. The vegetable prep is very much the same, but this time we’re gonna cook them down a little bit and add stock that’s been gelatinized. If you have homemade stock that sets up like jello in the fridge, you can skip this step.

Otherwise, grab yourself a half cup of store-bought stock and evenly sprinkle a packet of unflavored gelatin over top, mixing occasionally to make sure that it’s all dissolved. Set that aside, and to both deeply flavor our vegetables and make them softer, we’re gonna saute them a little bit. In a tablespoon or two of vegetable oil, heated over medium-high heat, we’re gonna saute our finely-chopped onion, grated carrots, and celery for three to five minutes, until just starting to get soft.

Preparing the Gelatinized Stock

Then we’re gonna plop out our gelatinized stock. Gross. Let that melt and let everything simmer together until the stock has cooked down by about 50%. Then we’re gonna crush in a couple of cloves of fresh garlic, let that cook for a bit, and then, before we can add this mixture to the meat, we need to let it cool completely. So spreading it out on a sheet pan is gonna make it cool a whole lot faster.

While that cools, we can make our panade. But we’re not gonna use store-bought breadcrumbs, are we? No, sir. We’re gonna make our own. Into a food processor goes three pieces of completely stale artisanal bread, and this optional, but a quarter ounce of dried porcini mushrooms, which are gonna pack an umami punch.

Making the Panade Meatloaf Recipe

Then we’re gonna process these into some fine breadcrumbs, and process and process and process… You know what, I’m starting to think this is a job for a high-powered blender. Never mind what I said before. We’re placing this stuff in a high-powered blender and processing until fine, trying not to breathe in that stinky mushroom dust. Don’t worry, this is gonna taste a lot better than it smells.

Then I’m making a double batch of meatloaf, so I need a big ol’ bowl, but I’m still gonna narrate the amounts for a single batch, so don’t pay attention that breaking four eggs into this bowl, you’re gonna break two eggs into a bowl which we’re gonna tiny was together with four ounces of buttermilk. Then we’re adding one tablespoon of soy sauce, one teaspoon of wshshsheer sauce, and one teaspoon of fish sauce. Again, something that smells gnarly now, but it’s gonna taste great later.

Kneading and Assembling the Meatloaf

Then we got our quarter cup of tomato paste, an eighth cup of fresh basil, a quarter cup of parsley, and our five ounces of homemade porcini mushroom breadcrumbs. Then we’re gonna add all of our sauteed and cooled vegetables with gelatinized stock and mix that bad boy for the parade to end all parades. Then we add our bespoke meatloaf mix, our teaspoon of salt, and a teaspoon and a half of freshly ground black pepper, and then I’m gonna knead the hell out of this.

My instinct is to keep this mixture loose, like a burger, so it stays tender, but we need to work on this mixture so it has a good structure and doesn’t crack. After all, they say don’t overwork a burger, otherwise it’ll end up like meatloaf. But we’re making meatloaf here, so that’s what we want. As soon as you’re done with whatever it is that I’m doing, it’s pretty much the same procedure as before except this time.

I’m gonna pack about a quarter of the meat firmly into the bottom of the loaf pan to ensure that there are no gaps, piling the rest of the meat on top and pressing firmly before inverting onto, this time, a heavily greased piece of aluminum foil. I simply cannot stress how important this is. Our glaze stays the same because it is perfect and flawless and requires no recompense, as is our baking technique.

How Long To Cook Meatloaf

15 minutes standing in a 350-degree Fahrenheit oven, glaze thoroughly and completely. 15 additional minutes in the oven, another layer of the delicious glaze, I’m sorry, and then another 20 to 25 minutes in the oven, allowing to rest for 10 minutes before removing, slicing, and serving. Now, this meatloaf has a significantly longer time requirement, and while grinding your meat certainly gives you more control over what’s going into the meatloaf, I think the real secret lies in all the flavors and umami boosters.

But one beef I still have, so to speak, is the form factor. I propose that you make mini meatloaves, using the same method, but with smaller loaf pans. These little guys cook a full 10 minutes faster, and they’re much more maneuverable and less unwieldy than their big leafy brethren. After a quick broil to set the glaze, they’ve got the same beautifully caramelized exterior with a much moister interior, and let’s face it, smaller things are cuter. Case in point, tiny whisk. But no matter the size of the meatloaf, all these recipes are gonna turn out delicious.

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french toast recipe

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