So I think I should get this out of the way first. This recipe is a blatant rip off from Tim Ferris' "MLBJ" found in "The Four Hour Chef" if you have space for another cookbook I can't recommend 4HC enough! Very clever, highly entertaining, and bound to teach you something new. That being said, I did bastardize his well thought out tutorial into the monstrosity I will be describing below :)
This is my favorite way to use up ground meat. Lucky for me I have some ground Alberta whitetail venison which I think is perfect for this recipe; not only does it add a deeper richer flavor over your standard beef, but the cheese and onions of the stuffing keep the lean venison nice and moist.
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Step 1: Prepare for War...
Step one is always prepare your mise en place. My meatloaf consists of the following ingredients (all approximations);
- 2.5 pounds ground meat (we are using venison!)
- 1 diced onion
- 1 head of garlic
- 2 eggs
- 2 pinches of mediteranean oregano
- 1 pinch chili powder
- 2 cups greens ( we are using a mix of kale, chard, and spinach)
- 250 grams goat cheese
- 1 can tomato paste
- salt and pepper
Step 2: Prepare Your Meat Mixture
When you get down to it meatloaf is actually pretty simple; chop up and add some fillings, mix in your ground meat, and bake till desired doneness. This is roughly the process we will be following but we're putting our fancy pants on with the whole cheese and greens filling.
Anyways first thing's first. Finely dice an onion, and a whole head of Garlic (that's right, let's not half ass it with a few dinky cloves)
To a large mixing bowl, add your ground meat, eggs, seasoning and diced vegetables and combine.
Step 3: Roll Your Meat-sushi
You've now got a bowl full of meatloaf guts, if you are so inclined you can throw the works in a loaf pan and call it a day. But this is a stuffed meatloaf! Prepare your workstation with a length of plastic wrap, this will help facilitate the rolling process. Layer out your prepared meat roughly the width of your loaf pan. Now in the centre load in your greens and goat cheese. I used a mix of spinach kale and chard but anything green and leafy will work.
Now the tricky part, roll the works up and maneuver it into the loaf pan, preferably seem side down. If you don't have an inherent fear of carbs I think an additional binder might be helpful in keeping everything together. Breadcrumbs, panko, or oatmeal would all be acceptable.
Step 4: Prepare for the Oven
Now that you've effectively grappled your loaf into its pan we can do the final preparation for the oven. While finishing your prep you can preheat the range to 450F.
Top your loaf with the better part of a can of tomato paste and top with some herbs you've got kicking around, or some leftover oregano.
Step 5: Cook Your Loaf!
The time in your oven will be dependent on the size of your loaf. Use a meat thermometer and cook to an internal temperature of at least 150F. My particular loaf took around an hour.