Diner Style Meatloaf FTW!

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There are some dinners that seem out of place if you have them at home, dinners with a “blue-plate special” appeal to them. Hot turkey or hot roast beef sandwiches, Shepherd’s pie, and liver and onions are just a few of the daily specials we might expect to see when stopping at a favourite truck stop or diner. And perhaps at the top of that list is meatloaf, a much loved comfort food that is almost impossible for most meat-eaters to resist.

Certainly this is a dish that you are not going to schedule for Meatless Monday, but it is still a good bet for a crowd of omnivores. And meatloaf is one of those rare magic dishes that taste just as good the next day, and just as good cold, especially when sliced thick and made into a sandwich. Served on crusty French bread and slathered with a good chutney or caramelized onions, a meatloaf sandwich is a thing of beauty.

 

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Some years ago we were lucky enough to acquire what we think is the perfect meatloaf recipe. Tender and succulent, it has the right amount of moisture, just enough fat that it isn’t dry or crumbly. This is because the loaf has equal amounts of beef and pork mixed together. Ground pork has a higher fat content than ground beef, and the two flavours compliment each other beautifully. A can of mushroom soup is added to the mix, to give it even more flavour and moisture, as well as the classic addition of chopped onion and Worcestershire sauce. Breadcrumbs keep the loaf soft and tender; they soak up the liquids from the cooking meats as well as the onion and mushroom, and also helps to stretch the recipe a bit; adding a little more breadcrumbs to the mix the way you add a little more stock to the soup when you find out an extra guest is coming to dinner.

 

Hot patootie-bless my soul, I really love Meatloaf!

Hot patootie-bless my soul, I really love Meatloaf!

 

Served with mashed potatoes and a side of braised greens or peas and carrots, this is a supper that hits all the right buttons. And you’ve got tomorrow’s lunch all figured out. Meatloaf sandwiches for everyone!

Diner Meatloaf

This makes a fairly large meatloaf, enough for a family of 4 with leftovers for meatloaf sandwiches the next day.

1 lb ground beef

1 lb ground pork

1 can mushroom soup

1 large onion chopped fine

2 eggs

1 cup bread crumbs

1 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

2 tablespoons ketchup

a few shakes of Worcestershire sauce.

For basting: 2 tablespoons ketchup mixed with 1 teaspoon soy sauce

Pre-heat oven to 350 F. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and shape into a loaf. Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet with a lip; the cooking will yield a fair amount of juices. Cook for 2 hours. After 1st hour, brush ketchup/ soy sauce mix.

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