I think every family in America has their favourite meatloaf recipe. Over the years I have developed my own here in the UK, using the some of the ingredients I saw my mother and grandmother using and adding a few extra ingredients that I was introduced to here in the UK.
- 400grams ground lean minced beef
- 400 grams sausage meat (I use a gluten free pork sausage)
- 1 finely chopped onion
- 1 heaped teaspoon capers, finely minced
- 2 anchovy fillets, finely minced
- 1 tablespoon (give or take) tomato catsup
- 1 teaspoon (give or take) mustard
- 1 whole egg
- ¼ cup gluten free rice crumbs
(or gluten free crackers/biscuits crushed)
- Dried or fresh herbs – parsley, thyme, oregano, or another of your choice.
- Salt and pepper
- Dry cure bacon strips
- Heat the oven to 400F/200C/Gas mark 6
- Combine all of the ingredients except the bacon on a large bowl and mix together. Wash your hands, take your rings off, and get your fingers dirty for this. You can mix the meatloaf together better by hand than with a spoon.
I generally add a scant 1 teaspoon salt and around ¼ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper, but adjust this to your own personal tastes. Remember that the capers will be salty if they were pickled in brine.
Option 1: Form into a loaf and place in a 2 litre casserole dish. Make sure there is a finger width space between the loaf and the sides of the dish. Layer the bacon over the top. Cover with foil and cook in oven for approximately 90 minutes. Uncover the final 30 minutes. If necessary, drain off the accumulated fat when uncovered.
Option 2: Form into 1 inch balls and place on a baking tray. Omit the bacon. Bake in oven for 30 – 40 minutes. These go well with spaghetti, or served to young children who don’t like meatloaf but do like meatballs.
Option 3: Form into 4 loaf shapes. Wrap each loaf in 2 strips bacon. Place on a baking tray and bake for 45 – 50 minutes.
In our house we use options 2 and 3. We create 2 small loaves using half the mix and turn the remainder into 1 inch meatballs. This is because our children have Asperger’s Syndrome. While they will happily eat meatballs, they don’t like meatloaf. (Yep, they know it’s the same ingredients.) It’s no bigger effort to make the one over the other though.
The hubby-man likes to have meatloaf with one of his special sauces.
- Combine 2 tablespoons mayonnaise with 1 – 2 teaspoons chopped chipotle in adobo. Add a pinch of salt and pepper.
- Adjust the chipotle in adobo according to your own desired heat level.
This meatloaf goes really well served alongside mashed potatoes and a green, seasonal vegetable.
If you do make meatballs, they go very nicely in a spaghetti with bolognaise sauce. Just omit the meat when cooking the sauce.
One small loaf in our house is usually enough for 2 of us, so the next day I slice the second loaf and use it for sandwiches.