For me, the best part about a meat loaf is eating the leftovers the next day, cold between two pieces of bread. Covered in ketchup and salt. The actual meatloaf is always good too — I’m just never very happy with how it turns out. I’ve never been able to make a meatloaf that cooks in the time it’s supposed to and stays together in a loaf shape without getting dry.I keep trying and was hopeful this time around may be my lucky break!
- 1.5 pounds ground lean beef, turkey, pork, veal, or a combination
- 1 cup Italian bread crumbs
- 2 eggs whisked
- 1 cup tomato juice
- 1 small onion chopped
- 1 stalk celery chopped
- 3–4 tablespoons of chopped bell pepper, any color
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon ketchup
- 2 strips of smoky bacon
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine the first 11 ingredients thoroughly. Take your rings off and make sure your kids are ok before you start. It never fails for me that as soon as I dig my hands into the gloppy mess someone starts crying or bleeding and I have to wash my hands to help and then get over the gloppy feeling once again. You should know when I made this I didn’t chop enough, so chop smaller than you think. I also did not use fresh parsley or thyme. I’m a work in progress, remember?
Add the meat mixture to a loaf pan. I knew a whole loaf would be too much for us so I made two loaves and froze one of them for a later date! Bonus! Spread ketchup on top. Lay bacon strips on top of the ketchup and bake for one hour. I will admit that the bacon never made it to the presentation. Once it came out of the oven and I was cutting it for the plates… well the bacon didn’t cut well and it was just easier to eat it myself. I did it for the kids. Or something like that.
It was good. It didn’t stay together great, but I think this is probably something that’s wrong with me not the recipe. It’s against the law in my head to serve meatloaf with anything other than mac’n’cheese. Maybe fried potatoes. But mac is the safest.