MARCH IS A month at war with itself. Cold, windy evenings eventually give way to promising sunny, spring days only to blow back into blustery darkness.
March is, therefore, the perfect month for meatloaf.
Old-fashioned, warm and comforting dinners transform into hipster-friendly cold sandwiches for lunch the next day. See? Conflict resolution, people.
We were raised on our grandmother’s onion soup staple, and a sweeter, jammy ketchup and bacon-topped home variety.
As teenhood advanced, our household turned to adding oatbran or oatmeal and grated carrot and squash, which turned meatloaf into something entirely different — a little something we liked to call child abuse.
But seriously, our love of this dual dinner-to-lunch staple will never fade.
We flirted with a white wine and lemon scented New York Times version, and an allspice number with a ketchup, brown mustard and steak sauce pan gravy. We love the kitsch of our friend R’s cheeseburger rollup style: a diner-esque jelly roll stuffed with shredded cheddar and grilled onion, topped with mustard and ketchup, and served with cold dill pickles. A classic from L.A.’s The Ivy. And there’s this Pioneer Woman bacon-wrapped goodness.
But we want something that tries a little less, just like us. Because, people – this is meatloaf, not chateaubriand.
We are simply mad for the lashings of red pepper jelly served atop Diner Deluxe’s veal meatloaf alongside Dijon mashed potatoes and Avenue Diner’s AAA beef meatloaf served open-faced on savoury bread pudding.
DINER DELUXE MEATLOAF
Recipe by Dwayne Ennest
1.2 kg ground veal
1.2 kg ground beef
1 cup diced carrots, roasted
1 cup diced parsnips, roasted
1/4 cup diced green onions
1/4 cup ketchup
2 tbsp HP Sauce
1/2 tsp each: garlic powder, ground cumin, ground coriander, mustard powder, Worchester sauce
2 tbsp hot sauce
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 450°F. Mix all ingredients together. Cook a small piece of the mixture on the stovetop to taste and check seasonings.
Place the mixture in two or three loafpans and bake until internal temperature is 120°F, approximately two hours.
Red Pepper Jelly
2 cups pureed roasted red bell peppers
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1/2 tbsp red chili flakes and Tabasco sauce each
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup water
Mix all ingredients, except for cornstarch and water, in a stainless steel pot; bring to a boil. Mix the starch and water and stir into the jelly. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer over medium low heat for two hours until it is thick and jammy with a shiny bright colour. Cool and refrigerate in airtight container. Keeps two weeks and can be frozen. Makes four cups.
1 lb ground beef
1 onion, shredded
1 cup shredded apples
3/4 cup bread crumbs
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon Montreal seasoning
3 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl and with a gentle hand, mix together all ingredients EXCEPT the olive oil. Add some additional breadcrumbs if the mixture seems wet. Mold into a loaf and place in a standard loaf pan. Spread the olive oil over the top of the loaf (this keeps the moisture locked in) and place in the oven. Bake for about 40 minutes or until cooked through and the juices run clear. Allow to sit 5 minutes before slicing and serving.
CATHI’S ‘SORRY IT’S SOLD OUT’ MEATLOAF
with herb wine jelly
1.25 kg lean ground beef
1 cup onions, finely minced
1 tbsp garlic, minced
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/2 cup tomato sauce
1/2 cup bread crumbs
3 tbsp combined chopped fresh basil, tarragon, oregano, thyme
Combine all ingredients and pat into a 20 cm by 10 sprayed pan.
Bake at 325°F for 30 to 45 minutes.
herb wine jelly
1 cup chopped mixed fresh herbs: rosemary, basil, tarragon, oregano
1 cup boiling water
1 1/2 cups red wine
4 cups sugar
1 bottle of Certo
Combine herbs with boiling water and let steep for one minute. Transfer herbs and water to a saucepan. Add wine and sugar and boil for one minute.
Add Certo and remove from heat. Continue to stir well for several minues, straining any foam from surface.
Pour into sterilized jars leaving 1 cm at top and seal.
Makes 6 one cup jars.
BILL BLASS’S MEATLOAF
2 lbs ground sirloin
1/2 lb ground veal
1/2 ground pork
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/3 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups soft bread crumbs
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
pinch dried thyme
pinch dried marjoram
1 bottle Heinz chili sauce
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
In large mixing bowl gently combine ground sirloin, veal and pork; set aside.
In a medium sauté pan, melt butter over medium high heat. Add celery and onions and sauté until soft, about 10 minutes. Add sautéed celery and onions and all remaining ingredients except chili sauce to meat mixture.
Combine well and form into a loaf. Place loaf in a baking dish and top with chili sauce.
Bake 1 hour in a preheated 350° oven.