Meatloaf is a one of those welcome entrees that appear regularly on family dinner tables all over the world. As it does, it often involves a special family recipe and process. That is certainly true in the case of our proven winner offered here. That said we’d like to suggest that if you have your favorite meatloaf recipe, by all means, use it. Our focus in this segment is more on process than on recipes. It matters not whether your choice of ingredient for your “meatloaf” is ground beef, chicken, turkey/a combination thereof or your favorite vegan meatloaf mix. It isn’t whether or not you include the sausage. By slathering the partially baked and browned meatloaf with delectably fluffy mashed potatoes laced with your favorite cheese (or the sharp cheddar we call for in our recipe), and baking it in a hot oven until all is a lightly browned scrumptious feast for eyes and palate, a simple Tuesday night dinner becomes regal fare for any night of the week and company worthy
Essentials *= Optional
•1 lb. ground beef, chicken, or turkey *(+1/4 lb. sausage) •1 c. aromatics (medium onion, finely chopped + 1/2 c. diced celery •Finely chopped peppers (½ c. Sweet + 2 tbsp. Jalapeno peppers) •1 c. cracker crumbs (butter, soda, or other savory cracker crumbs) •1 egg, beaten with 2 tbsp. oil (olive, peanut, canola, etc.) •1/2 c. half & half or whole milk •1/4 cup Catsup Toss the above essential ingredients in a large mixing bowl Add Seasonings and mix together well. Seasonings: •2 Tbsp. salt •1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper •1tsp. sage •1 tsp. thyme •1 tsp. granulated garlic •1 tbsp. honey (or sweeteners of choice)
Mound into a loaf shape on a parchment liner in a lightly oiled shallow baking dish and bake in 375° oven for 40 minutes
Remove from oven and increase oven heat to 425°
Mashed Potato “Frosting” •2 qt. Sauce Pan • 3 Medium Russet Potatoes (Scrub, peel and cut into 1” pieces) • Water to cover potatoes seasoned with 3 tsp. salt
•1½ tsp. salt •1 tsp. white pepper, •1 tsp. granulated garlic (or one smashed clove), • a pinch of cayenne pepper.
•2 Tbsp. butter, •½ cup chicken stock, • 2 Tbsp. heavy cream, and • 1 ounce (grated) of your favorite sharp cheddar + extra for garnish.
Cook potatoes over medium heat until fork-tender. Drain, reserving ½ cup of cooking water. Add salt, pepper, garlic, cayenne, butter and chicken stock. Mash and stir with fork to “whip” to a smooth consistency, adding heavy cream last. If mashed potatoes are not frosting consistency, add reserved water a Tbsp. at a time, stirring with each addition until spreadable.
“Frost” meatloaf with Cheesy Mashed Potatoes and brush the potato “frosting” with 2 tbsp. melted butter, sprinkle with a garnish of grated cheese and return to hot oven.
Bake an additional 20 – 25 minutes or until potatoes are golden.
Remove meatloaf to serving dish(using parchment liner ends for easier handling), surround with green peas and glazed carrots. Serve, enjoy and graciously accept the compliments due you.