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Cook’s Country Italian Meatloaf

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  • Cook’s Country Italian Meatloaf

    I made this tonight exactly as written. It was fantastic!

    CC Italian Meatloaf

    SERVES 6 to 8

    WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS

    This Italian Meatloaf is essentially an excellent recipe for meatballs and marinara without any of the hands-on fuss. We started with an intensely flavorful meatball mix—ground beef, Italian sausage, Parmesan cheese, garlic, and oregano—but instead of rolling dozens of meatballs, we just shaped one meatloaf. Mixing in a paste of crushed saltines, eggs, and milk ensured that the meatloaf held its shape and baked up tender and moist. We whipped together a bright, garlicky 5-minute tomato sauce, poured it over the meatloaf in a baking dish, and baked the two together, elevating and enriching both meatloaf and sauce in the process. For a next-level finishing touch, we topped the meatloaf with creamy melted fontina and a sprinkling of fresh basil.

    INGREDIENTS

    Sauce
    1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
    5 garlic cloves, sliced thin
    1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
    1 (15-ounce) can tomato sauce
    teaspoon red pepper flakes
    teaspoon table salt

    Meatloaf
    35 square saltines
    cup whole milk
    2 large eggs
    1 pound 85 percent lean ground beef
    1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
    2 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated (1 cup)
    1 teaspoon granulated garlic
    1 teaspoon dried oregano
    teaspoon table salt
    teaspoon pepper
    teaspoon red pepper flakes
    4 ounces fontina cheese, shredded (1 cup)
    3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

    BEFORE YOU BEGIN

    Grate the Parmesan using a rasp-style grater; shred the fontina on the large holes of a box grater. If making our Italian Meatloaf Sandwich, set aside 1 cup of sauce before slicing the meatloaf.

    1
    INSTRUCTIONS

    FOR THE SAUCE: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 400 degrees. Heat oil in large saucepan over medium heat until shimmering. Add garlic and cook until lightly browned, about 1 minute. Stir in tomatoes, tomato sauce, pepper flakes, and salt. Bring to simmer and cook until flavors have melded, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat; cover to keep warm.
    2
    FOR THE MEATLOAF: Spray broiler-safe 13 by 9-inch baking dish with vegetable oil spray. Place saltines in large zipper-lock bag, seal bag, and crush saltines to fine crumbs with rolling pin. Whisk saltines, milk, and eggs together in large bowl. Let sit until saltines are softened, about 5 minutes. Whisk saltine mixture until smooth paste forms. Add beef, sausage, Parmesan, granulated garlic, oregano, salt, pepper, and pepper flakes and mix with your hands until thoroughly combined.
    3
    Transfer beef mixture to prepared dish. Using your wet hands, shape into 9 by 5-inch rectangle; top should be flat and meatloaf should be 1 inches thick. Pour sauce over meatloaf. Cover dish with aluminum foil and place on rimmed baking sheet. Bake until meatloaf registers 160 degrees, 1 hour 5 minutes to 1 hours.
    4
    Remove sheet from oven, uncover dish, and sprinkle meatloaf evenly with fontina. Heat broiler. Broil meatloaf until cheese is melted, about 2 minutes. Let rest for 15 minutes.
    5
    Using 2 spatulas, transfer meatloaf to cutting board. Spoon off any excess grease from tomato sauce. Slice meatloaf 1 inch thick. Transfer slices back to sauce in baking dish, sprinkle with basil, and serve.

    Charlene’s notes: 1-28-2020 I made this and followed the recipe exactly as written. Absolutely fantastic, no changes needed.

  • #2
    Sounds like a winner! Thanks for posting.

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    • #3
      It was so good! We’re having more tonight.

      edited to add: Oh man, the leftovers are amazing! I vacuum sealed 2 more night’s worth of servings and froze them, what we had tonight was delicious!
      Last edited by CharleneG; 01-31-2020, 07:54 PM.

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