Meatloaves might not be the prettiest dishes out there, but they surely are some of the most satisfying, especially when old-school. And although we’re more and more getting used to fancy dinners, a thick slice of meatloaf is hard to refuse.
The thing with meatloaf is that it is, in a way, naked. You can really taste the quality of the meat, and if you use so-so ground beef, your loaf won’t be much more than average.
That’s why using good meat and other quality ingredients matters; use the right stuff and you can get an authentic masterpiece — a dish that will have everyone wanting to repeat.
Nice meat is critical here, so go for a good mixture of lean and fatty meat. In fact, a combination of beef and pork meat works great! And choose nothing below Choice. You’ll also need some aromatics, and that means we’re adding garlic, carrots and celery to the loaf.
It’s amazing what a dab of butter, salt and pepper can do to liven a meatloaf — when it comes to this meaty classic, the less you put into it, the better. Of course, we must flavor it somehow, so we’re adding Worcestershire sauce and ketchup. Breadcrumbs will bring it all together along with eggs and chopped parsley will add some freshness to every bite!
The secret for a perfect loaf is sautéing the veggies before adding them to the mixture; that way, they have a lovely smoky flavor and are not soggy.
Meatloaf is always the main event at the table, but it shines best when served with a few nice sides. Roasted potatoes are classic — you can choose baby potatoes or cut large ones into wedges.
You should also eat some veggies. Steamed spinach is always a nice complement for meatloaf, but broccoli or a combination of your favorite veggies is okay too. Sauté them in butter for the most unctuous and healthy side.
Prep the veggies by finely mincing the onion and garlic and dicing the celery and carrots. Set aside.
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
In a skillet, add the butter and sauté the vegetables for 3-4 minutes until soft and fragrant. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, mix the ground beef, ground pork, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, breadcrumbs, eggs and parsley.
Incorporate the sautéed veggies into the meat mixture.
Pour the mixture into a loaf pan and bake for one hour or until cooked through.