Italian Meatloaf

italian meatloaf

I’m going out of town on business later this week and want to make sure that I leave something in the fridge that will last John a couple of days and keep him away from KFC.  Italian meatloaf always works.  It’s now in the freezer and will come out Wednesday, and go into the fridge, before I get on the plane.  This recipe makes one very large meatloaf or two medium sized loaves. 

  •      1 ½ cups fine multigrain bread crumbs
  •      ¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  •      1 tsp dried oregano
  •      1 tbsp dried basil
  •      ½ tsp freshly ground pepper
  •      3 cloves garlic minced
  •      1 cup onions chopped
  •      ½ cup green peppers minced
  •      ¾ cup liquid egg substitute (e.g. Egg Beaters)
  •      3 cups tomato or red pasta sauce
  •      3 pounds lean ground beef

 Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Mix well all ingredients except sauce and beef in a large bowl.  Add 1 ½ cup sauce and beef and mix very well with your hands (wearing clean latex gloves helps as the beef can get quite cold and then you can make sure you don’t lose your wedding ring in the mix!).  If you have one of those fancy Kitchen Aid mixers that does just about everything, including washing your car, you can use that instead.

 Line a broiler pan with heavy-duty foil.  Top with broiler rack.  Spray broiler rack with non-stick spray.  Put the mixture on the  rack and shape it into one large loaf or two smaller ones, side by side (not touching).  Bake in the meatloaf in the oven for 45 minutes.  After forty five minutes spread ½ cup sauce on top of the meatloaf and return to the oven for 15 more minutes. 

If you are serving this right away, let the meatloaf rest at least 10 minutes before slicing.  Serve slices with the remaining 1 cup of tomato sauce .   This is great, of course, with garlic mashed potatoes.  But that recipe will have to wait for another day.

Of you can let the meatloaf cool, wrap it in the foil and place it in the freezer for eating later.  Defrost the meatloaf and reheat it unwrapped in a 400 degree oven for 15 minutes.  Makes 8 servings.

P.S.  There is a version of this recipe with hard-boiled eggs in the middle.  Flatten the meat loaf into a large rectangular patty.  Lay 4 hard-boiled eggs, end to end lengthwise down the middle, bring the edges of the meat up and around the eggs, encasing them entirely and then shape the meat into a log.   Bake as directed.

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