I don't own a microwave, for which 99.99% of the time I am grateful, because I like to take my time in the kitchen, and I have a freakish distrust of those weird boxes, but there is always the one time when I really need one. The other night was one of those nights. I realized a day too late that I hadn't defrosted the meat for the loaf, so carted my frozen containers over to the playground, where Keja took the stash home and defrosted it for me. I guess a microwave is like a pick up truck: it's always best if you have a friend with one.
So, unless you don't own a microwave and forget to defrost the meat early, this is a really easy recipe and absolutely perfect for a crisp Fall evening.
Peter's Mom's Amazing Meatloaf
2 cups bread crumbs
2 whole eggs
1/2 cup ketchup
2 TBSP Dijon mustard
2 TBSP Worcestershire sauce
1 cup hot beef broth
1 medium onion, small diced and sautéed
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teas pepper
Salt - optional, depending on saltiness of broth; better to salt at the table if you're unsure! (It's hard when you can't taste your meal before you eat it!)
Fresh herbs - optional (thyme, parsley, sage, rosemary are all nice; use a 1/2 teas or so of any or all)
2 lbs. ground meat (the secret is using a variety of meat with high fat content. Try using pork sausage, ground lamb, ground beef, ground pork, etc. in whatever combination sounds good to you. Avoid anything leaner than 80%.)
Sauté onions until starting to soften, approximately 5 minutes. Add garlic at last minute to release flavor.
In the bowl of a mixer or large mixing bowl, mix onion with all other ingredients EXCEPT MEAT. Mix until incorporated. If not using a mixer, I recommend using your hands to mix everything together.
Add meat into meatloaf mixture.
Place meat into two bread pans.
Cook at 400 for one hour, with pans over a cookie sheet to catch potential drips. The meat should be cooked through.
Before cutting and serving, drain off excess fat (unless you like it, then reserve it). I like to use a baster to remove the fat. It is easier to transfer to a plate for easy carving.
Serve with mashed potatoes. Yum.