I love the show Mad Men. Do you watch it? The early 1960s fashion, decor and general aesthetic in it are completely fascinating to me. In almost every episode, the quintessential desperate housewife Betty Draper, in heels and an apron, is feeding some kind of kitschy, fattening American comfort food to the kids or to Don. Things like Ambrosia salad, Tuna Casserole, and Meatloaf.
Ahh, Meatloaf. It really gets a bad rap - probably because so often its bland, dry, tough, and smothered in the devil of all substances, ketchup (shudder). The fact is though, when done right meatloaf can be positively delicious - full of subtle flavors and offering a simple, rustic comforting meal on a fall or winter night. Its not something I would make often, as I try to keep my meat eating to a bare minimum, but its a great treat every now and again.
This meatloaf is definitely delicious - just a hint of spiciness with sweet rich flavors like balsamic and red wine. They key is not overwork the meat while you combine everything together and to get a good, coarse ground beef. You won't see any ketchup in this recipe either - instead I used a thick potent tomato paste from Italy combined with local honey. It is to die for fresh out of the oven, and is pretty amazing heated up on a sandwich the next day as well.
Meatloaf with a Honey-Chipotle Balsamic glaze
3 cups fresh bread crumbs (I take about 3 or 4 slices of whole wheat bread broken into pieces and pulse in the food processor a few times)
1 egg, whisked
1000g Ground beef (or about 2 to 2 1/2 lbs)
1/2 cup red wine
1 yellow onion, minced
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
5 cloves of garlic, minced or pressed
6 Tbs tomato paste
1/3 cup honey
2 tsp dried oregano, divided
2 tsp dried thyme, divided
1 tsp dried basil
1 pinch dried crushed sage
salt and fresh ground pepper
for the glaze:
1/4 c. honey
1/4 c. balsamic vinegar
2 Tbs. Chipotle in adobo (for this, I take one of the little cans, remove seeds from the peppers and make it into a paste in the blender and keep in my fridge, then use 2 tbs of this paste)
First, marinate the meat. In a large bowl, combine the red wine with the ground sirloin. Season liberally with salt and pepper. Cover and let marinate for around 30 minutes. I let it sit out on the counter while I prep everything else so the meat can come to room temperature.
Next, saute your veggies. Heat a bit of olive oil in a skillet and add the carrots and onions. Saute for around 8 minutes over medium low heat, until the veggies soften. Add the garlic, sage, and 1 tsp each of oregano and thyme. Cook for another 2 minutes or so, until garlic is combined and fragrant. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Now make your breadcrumbs. Take about 3 cups fresh bread crumbs and season with the basil and 1 tsp each of oregano and thyme. Put the crumbs in nonstick skillet or frying pan over high heat and toss until just toasted. Remove and let cool.
Whisk together 1/3 cup honey with the 6 Tbs tomato paste. Now everything is ready to mix in with the meat. In a very large bowl, mix the sauteed veggies, the honey/tomato sauce and the breadcrumbs and a whisked egg and mix it all together gently just until combined (unfortunately using your hands is really the best way to combine everything with the meat).
Pack the meat mixture into a loaf pan (if it doesn't fit or you don't have one, just shape into a loaf on a baking sheet covered with parchment).
Whisk together the honey, balsamic vinegar and chipotle for the glaze. Pour a bit over the top of the meat loaf and use a brush to spread it over the rest. Use about 3/4 of the glaze at this point. The glaze isn't super sticky, so it may drip down into the loaf or around the sides, which is awesome because its flavor :)
Put the loaf in center of the oven and cook at 350 F (180 C) for about 1 hour. Remove and apply the rest of the glaze about half way through the cooking.
Let rest for 5 or 10 minutes before cutting. You can slip the whole loaf out of the pan or just individual slices. There will be some juices - reserve them and spoon over slices of the meatloaf for best results. They will be sweet from the honey with just a bit of spice and are simply delicious :)
I heart film. - A little over a year ago I bought a Canon Ae-1 and last week I found the first roll of film I shot on it and finally had it processed (Its been a crazy year ...