Ten years ago, if you’d suggested meatloaf would become one of my favourite ways to cook humble beef mince, I would have shuddered and quite possibly refused to associate with you ever again.
However, this simple recipe has transformed my previously-snobbish view on meatloaf, and I’ve come to realise that with a bit of extra effort and a few key ingredients, meatloaf doesn’t have to be the bland, dry concoction of my childhood.
Totally-Not-Boring Meatloaf – serves 4
1/2c cooked rice (if I’ve been clever, I cook a dish with rice the night before, and do a little extra to save time the next night)
500g beef mince
2T fresh parsley, chopped
1t fresh or dried thyme
2 spring onions, sliced (or, if you’re pregnant and forgot to get them in the groceries, 1 finely chopped onion is also perfectly fine)
2t crushed garlic
1/4c tomato sauce
salt & freshly ground black pepper*
Preheat oven to 180degC.
Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl – preferably using your hands to ensure everything is well combined. Season well.
Scoop mixture into a baking dish (I use the kind of dish you’d typically make lasagne in), and form into a loaf shape, pressing the mixture together so it holds its shape while cooking.
Bake the meatloaf for 1 hour, brushing with the remaining glaze at 20 and 40 minutes. Use a spoon to scoop up the glaze that has run down the sides.
Stand for 10 minutes before slicing into whatever size chunks you desire. Serve with the sticky, pooled glaze spooned over the slices.
* With the meatloaf pictured above, I also added one carrot and half a zucchini, both grated, just to get more vegetables into Tiny. I cooked it for an extra 10 minutes, and due to the extra moisture, the glaze didn’t thicken round the sides like it normally does. In hindsight, I should have used less of the glaze, and perhaps squeezed the grated vegetables to get rid of the excess liquid. It still tasted pretty darn good, though!
Recipe: Allyson Gofton’s ‘Food in a Minute’ series, from about 2002.