Just what it says, meats in loaf shape. While the history of meatloaf is rather a bit longer than I suspected, this is a recipe for a typical American meatloaf post great depression. The inclusion of veg and crackers was used for extending the meat content, making the meal go further. Modern recipes use inclusions mostly as texturizing and flavor agents.
The recipe I use makes a lean loaf that is still moist through the mixture of meats and the milk soaked crackers, and can be used with a small spice change for great meatballs.
Step 1: Ingredients
You will need:
Tools: 2 large mixing bowls, a small bowl for mixing glaze, a bread loaf pan, I prefer glass pans, but metal works just fine, a measuring cup
1 pound (453g) 93% lean ground beef
1/2 pound (226g) ground pork
Saltines (1/2 sleeve) you can substitue 1/2-3/4cup (226-339ml) bread crumbs for this
1 large egg (you can use 2 for a firmer loaf)
1/2 cup (226ml) milk or stock
1/2 cup (226ml) diced onion
Salt and pepper
1-2 cloves garlic (one of the few places garlic powder is an acceptable alternative) ~1/8 tsp (1ml) ea
1/2 cup (226ml) diced veg such as bell pepper, celery, carrot shreds, caramelized onion, roasted garlic
Optional Glaze: (this is pretty close to the base of a couple varieties of bbq sauce)
1/4 cup (113ml) ketchup
1/8 cup (57ml) yellow mustard
1/8 cup (57ml) brown sugar
Step 2: Mix and Bake
Preheat the oven to 350f (176c)
If you keep the meat cool while assembling the fats don't go liquid and the included veg will stay in place while cooking. This may not be too important other than midsummer or if you wanted to be fancy and add caramelized onions or something, make sure to cool them first.
There is simply no tool better for mixing this than your hand!
In the mixing bowl crush up the saltines and add salt and pepper
mix in the milk and let sit (this will stop the crackers from absorbing the fat while cooking)
finely dice the onion and garlic then thoroughly mix with the milk and cracker mixture
Mix the glaze in a small bowl
thoroughly mix the meats in another mixing bowl
combine the meat and cracker mixtures in 1 bowl
add the raw egg
mix thoroughly then transfer to the loaf pan.
top with glaze and cook for 55-65min or until internal temp reaches at least 160f (71c) The shape will determine a little bit how long it takes for the center to become fully cooked.
Step 3: Serve
I drain the fat or remove the loaf and let the meat sit at least 10 minutes (20 is better) before cutting into and serving.