Thursday, October 15, 2009

Not your Mother's Meatloaf!

I had a major craving for good old-fashioned meatloaf and mashed potatoes the other day. I don't make it as a general rule simply because it never seems to have enough flavor and tends to be dry- which is why I think it gets drowned in gravy so often! So I started to go back in my memory as to when was the last time I even made a meatloaf?? And then it hit me.....of course! I had great success with the recipe from The New Basics Cookbook, which was my bible so to speak in the '90's. But I think I actually had made it for an ex somewhere in the early 2000's...anyway, I pulled out the book and low and behold there was the recipe (on page 525) that I had all but forgotten. It seems at the time this book came out, there was a restaurant in Venice, California called 72 Market Street, and this is the place where Julee Rosso and Shiela Lukins adapted their version. (Unfortunately, 72 Market Street closed its doors for good in November of 2000, about 14 months before the death of its founder, actor Dudley Moore.)

"....Craig Claiborne came out for the recipe, Vogue magazine has termed it the 'ultimate meatloaf' and 'Good Morning America' flew the chef in to do the recipe on the show...."

I remembered it had gotten a standing ovation the last time I made it, so I quickly set to work at giving it a once over and made my shopping list.

Suffice to say, I have added my own twist to it, giving it a small update to the present era of eating less "fat" ( I added one pound of ground turkey, and used only one pound of the ground beef-they originally called for two pounds of the ground beef). I also did not bake it in a "bain marie" (don't have a big enough pan for that method!) It came out just as amazing baking it in a roasting pan without the extra water bath method.

Here is the recipe with my adaptations:

Market Street Meatloaf
3 tbsp olive oil

3/4 cup finely chopped onion

1/2 cup finely chopped carrots
1/4 cup finely chopped celery
1/2 cup minced red bell pepper

2 tsp minced fresh garlic

Salt, to taste
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

1/2 tsp ground white pepper
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
3 eggs, well beaten

1/2 cup ketchup

1/2 cup half-and-half
1 pound lean ground beef

1 pound lean ground turkey

12 ounces sausage meat (pork works well, not fennel flavored)
1 cup fine fresh breadcrumbs

1. Preheat the oven to
375 ° F.
2. Heat the olive oil in a heavy skillet and add the onion, carrots, celery, red pepper and garlic. Cook stirring often until the moisture from the vegetables has evaporated, about 10 minutes.
Set aside to cool, then cover and refrigerate, covered, until chilled. (at least one hour)
3. Combine the salt, black pepper, white pepper, cayenne, cumin, nutmeg, and eggs in a mixing bowl, and beat well. Add the ketchup and half-and-half. Blend thoroughly.

4. Add the beef, turkey and sausage meat to the egg mixture. Add the breadcrumbs, then the chilled vegetables. Knead with your hands about 5 minutes to mix well. Transfer to a large roasting dish and with damp hands, form the mixture into an oval approximately 17 X 4.5 X 1.5 inches, resembling a long loaf of bread.
5. Place in preheated oven and bake for approximately 35-40 minutes.
6. Remove and let rest for 20 minutes before slicing.

This is by far one of those recipes that I can truly say, "I even amazed myself" at how yummy and moist and flavorful it is! You really don't need a gravy for it at all! It makes a really large size, so this could be great to serve at a dinner party for friends or just a great family weekday meal. No meatloaf could really be complete without mashed potatoes! I used Yukon Gold potatoes, and butter and even some of the half-and-half leftover from the meatloaf and they were delicious!

There is nothing better than meatloaf leftovers either....a cold meatloaf sandwich....what do you say?

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