I learned a lesson the other night. Some things are just not meant to go into meat loaf.
I have a wonderful recipe for meat loaf that I have used for years. Here it is:
2 pounds of ground beef (or meat mixture of pork, beef, veal if you're like Rachel Ray. I use beef. Some people use turkey.)
1/2 cup quick cooking unflavored oatmeal (GF if need be)
1 small onion finely minced (or I use Penzeys dried shallots now)
1 t. garlic salt
1 T. Mrs. Dash Garlic and Herbs (no salt)
1 t. pepper or cajun seasoning (guess which one I use?)
1 T. worcestershire
1/4 cup ketchup or chili sauce (GF if need be). and more for the top.
Moosh it all together, form a loaf, and bake for about one hour. Take out of the oven and put another coating of ketchup or chili sauce on it. While it sets for 10 minutes, it will warm. Slice and serve.
OK, fine. This has been my recipe since I was about 20 years old in college. It has served me well.
Until Sunday night.
I learned a couple of things about my new GF eating habits -- they're not really in sync with meatloaf making.
1. I used Laura's organic extra lean beef (four percent fat).
2. I used regular cooking GF oats.
3. I used organic free-range eggs.
THAT was one lethal combination for that poor meatloaf. For one, meatloaf needs CHUCK at a minimum, or a meat with some fat in it. My meat had no fat in it. Regular GF oats don't cook in a meatloaf, so I could actually SEE the oats when the thing was BAKED. It was like an oatcake! And finally, the eggs were too small. I needed large eggs. I buy organic eggs at Kroger, but these were from a friend's chickens. Silly me.
AND I put too much garlic salt in there. Bleah. It was awful. I ate one little slice and sent it to the garbage.
If you try to make my meatloaf recipe, please do me a favor.
1. Use at least ground chuck (they make organic ground chuck, I swear). Or use mixed white and dark turkey.
2. Put your half up of oats in the food processor and break them down! Or use bread crumbs (GF if need be). Or a slice of GF bread soaked in milk. Whatever. No Whole Oats.
3. Use regular large eggs.
While I'm posting, a word about that Laura's Lean Organic beef. I buy it at Kroger, and I do like it. One thing I LOVE about it is it's grass feed and tastes good. It makes a mean Lazy Spaghetti Sauce, too.
Lazy Spaghetti Sauce
Layer the following in this order from bottom to top in your crock pot:
One pound of Laura's ground beef (four percent fat or eight percent fat, either will work). OR ANY low fat ground beef)
One container of purchased pesto sauce
One envelope of Good Seasons Italian Dressing Mix (no liquids, just the mix)
Two cans of sliced mushrooms drained well
2 T. minced dried onions (I use Penzeys Dried Shallots)
One cheapest possible ever jar of meatless spaghetti sauce -- can get one with mushrooms if you want, but I use one I get at Big Lots.
Cook on simmer high for the afternoon, or on simmer low all day. I SWEAR it tastes amazing. It's the pesto. I promise.
I'm Italian, and it tastes like my family recipe that takes hours on the stove. If you're home, stir is after about an hour. If not, make sure your crumble the ground beef. I SWEAR you don't have to pre cook it.
Best of all, with the four percent ground beef in the bottom, you don't have to worry about fat. I refrigerated the leftovers, and I swear to you, there was not ONE SPECK OF FAT that rose to the top.
While I'm at it....
Bush's vegetarian baked beans make some mean beanie weenies. I just want to go on record with that. But it's hard as heck to find out if they're GF (they are) or if they have MSG (they don't). But this secret recipe only the dog and I know stuff is for the birds....
Much love, Ging