Meatloaf and baked vegetables

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Many years ago meatloaf used to be a dish served on Sundays, on public holidays or at weddings and funerals. Nowadays I really don’t remember seeing it on any festive occasions or even heard of anyone still making it. How did that come to happen? Maybe meatloaf is still being done, but people don’t make a big deal out of it. Anyhow it would be such a pity if this dish became a part of the vanishing cuisine, because when well done and spiced properly it is a real delicacy. Furthermore it’s quite easy on the budget and perfect for a large group of diners.

I have kept making meatloaf, as a matter of fact I make it quite frequently, though not as a sunday meal but more as an everyday dish. And it becomes even better when simmering with different vegetables on the side.

If possible I use minced pork meat in meatloafs because it absolutely is  the best and tastiest of the minced meats. Unfortunately one finds it quite seldom in stores and if I happen to find it I always take some extra to put in the freezer for future use. Minced meat made of pork and beef is still good enough to use, but if there is only those made of pure beef in the store shelves I just leave it there.

PORTION: 4 persons
TIME TO MAKE: 1 hour

INGREDIENTS:

Mince meat dough:

  • 500g minced pork or pork and beef meat
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 egg
  • 1½ teaspoons of salt
  • ¼ teaspoons of white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of paprika powder
  • ½ teaspoon of savory (dried and ground)
  • 2 teaspoons of lovage (dried and ground)
  • ½ dl cream (or water)
  • ½ dl breadcrumbs (gluten free)
  • ½ dl cream (or water)

Vegetables:

You can use any vegetables you like, on this tray we have:

  • 1 small cauliflower
  • 2 tomatoes or 8-10 sherry tomatoes
  • 2-3 shallots
  • 2-3 carrots
  • about 100g of green beans
  • 70g melted butter
  • olive oil
  • oregano

Heat the oven to 220°C (428°F)

Precook the cauliflower bud, cooking them in the microwave oven or on the stove for about ten minutes. Pour out the water and set aside.

Chop the onion in small pieces and sauté in a frying pan for just a short time. Let it cool a bit.

Put all the ingredient belonging to the loaf in a large bowl: first meat, then spices and eggs, breadcrumbs, cream/water and finally add the chopped onion. Blend well.

Just a reminder: a raw dough can and should taste a bit too salty, but the saltines will vanish when cooked.

Cut the carrots in small “sticks”, also cut the beans into somewhat smaller pieces.
Cut the shallots into something like six pieces each as well as the tomatoes if they are big.

If you’re using cherry tomatoes just slice them in two.

Line a baking dish with butter or oil. Choose a dish large enough for the loaf and the vegetables on each side. Shape the meat into a loaf in the middle, then arrange all the vegetables around it; use the carrots first because they need the most of the liquid on the bottom.

Pour some olive oil in a thin stream over the vegetables and add some oregano all over them. Melt butter and pour it both on the loaf and the vegetables.

Bake for about 35-40 minutes on the middle rack. The loaf should be beautifully brown and all the vegetables evenly cooked.

Served with cooked potatoes.

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