Monday, September 14, 2009

My Father-in-Law's Meatloaf

I never had meatloaf as a kid. My mom rarely made "American" food, so my family never saw it on the dinner table. It wasn't until college I finally had my first bite of meatloaf in the dorms and understood why it was so unappealing to the masses--shoveling through a dense, compressed brick of dry meat with a fork just seemed like a chore. I could diet on meatloaf because I never wanted to eat any. Plus there were all these weird colored specks packed in. It was as if the person who made the dish didn't have more than a celery rib to spare.

In fact, the first meatloaf I finally ever liked wasn't even made out of meat. If you haven't tried the "neatloaf" at Ananda Fuara in San Francisco, I suggest you give it a try. Don't let the fact the restaurant is in the Tenderloin scare you. Brave that urine smell and try something new.

When my husband and I first started dating, he kept asking if he could make his dad's meatloaf recipe for me. I kept making excuses. Most girls would go ga-ga over a guy who pleads to cook, but honestly? Meatloaf does not turn me on.

Eventually the day came. He made the meatloaf; I pored over a fashion magazine. Three mags later, my stomach growled. Are you done yet, I half-whined (it came from my stomach, I swear). The kitchen was a disaster, but my dear was in the midst of pulling the meatloaf out of the oven. Ten minutes later, dinner was ready.

I remember that first bite. It was good. I loved it so much I begged him for his dad's (now father-in-law) recipe. Four weeks later, he finally forwarded it to me:


This is from my memory since I am away from home. The quantity of seasoning
can be adjustable depending on what you feel like. You can also add other
herbs or stuff that you like to the meatloaf .

2 pounds ground beef (regular, not too lean) or half and half with
ground pork

1 egg
1 diced onion
1 shredded carrot
1 diced apple
1 cup 3-minute Quaker's oat meal (I always use), or bread crumbs
1 stalk diced celery
1/4 t ground pepper
1 t salt
1 T soy sauce/Worcester sauce

Mix all ingredients. If you don't like to clean the baking pan, you can line with aluminum foil before filling it up with the mixed ingredients. Bake at 350F for about 1 1/2 hours. When the top browns, the meatloaf should be done. Let it cool about 5-10 minutes before taking it out. Otherwise it might fall apart. Enjoy with ketchup and Worcester sauce.

Bon Appetit!


*Hint* For a nice meatloaf crust, securely pack the meat into the loaf pan and release the meat by flipping over the pan onto a foil-lined sheet before sticking it into the oven (see top photo).

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