A house is not a home unless it contains food and fire for the mind as well as the body.
In my family, we are pretty evenly split, as far as who is on the meatloaf love-band wagon, and those who cringe, gag and basically run at the mere mention… Meatloaf – did you get the picture of ultimate comfort food – or are you doing the ostrich?
I ask that you give this a try – Mel’s magic meat (see post) rub would be pretty amazing on this loaf of oozy, spicy goodness, too! Might I mention that this makes a pretty amazing sandwich the next day?
1 lb ground pork
1 lb ground chuck
1 onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 egg, slightly beaten
1/2 c panko breadcrumbs
1/2 c milk
1/2 c finely shredded parmigiana
1/4 tsp dry thyme
1/2 tsp oregano
salt, pepper, crushed red pepper to taste
12 pieces Turkey or best quality bacon
Provolone, pepper jack or other favorite cheese
Jalapeño, shaved or diced thin
Other ideas: sun- dried tomatoes, basil and mozzarella;
Asparagus, bacon and gruyere
Sweet caramelized onion and goat cheese, and bacon or pancetta
Preheat oven to 350. Lay out a 16 inch piece of parchment paper, set aside; line baking sheet with foil, spray with nonstick spray. In a large bowl, combine milk and Panko; let sit for a few minutes; stir in egg and seasoning, then the rest of the ingredients; get your hands in there and make sure it is all mixed up!
Pour meat mixture onto parchment paper; press out to a 10 x 16 rectangle, season surface of meat; leaving a 2 inch border along the length and a 1 inch border on the sides, start by sprinkling on the jalapeño, pressed slightly into meat mix, then layer the bacon and cheese, or any cheesy, yummy filling you choose. Starting with the long sides, start rolling meat mixture into a log form ( I use the parchment paper to keep everything nice and tight). Seal the seams by pressing together. Picking up the log, transfer to your foil- lined baking sheet. Press any additional jalapeño into the surface, wrap the top with any leftover bacon, tucking the ends under. This is where you can add your favorite rub, to get a nice crunch to the final outcome ( see post entitled “Mel’s magic meat” for my new go-to rub).
Bake for about 40 minutes, rotating pan halfway through cook time. Remove from oven, let rest for 10 minutes; slice and devour!
Spicy- buttermilk battered onion rings
1 c flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 T kosher salt
1/2 t ground black pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 t crushed red pepper
1/4 t chipotle powder
2 eggs, beaten
1 c buttermilk
Mix the dry ingredients in a medium, shallow bowl, whisk in egg and buttermilk.
Heat at least 3 inches of peanut, coconut or vegetable oil of choice (be careful to only use oils safe for high temps)
Slice sweet Vidalia onions (thank you Anderson family!) in about1/4 – 1/2 inch thick slices, separate into rings.
Using small tongs, fork or skewer, dip rings in batter, gently place in hot oil; cook for about 45 seconds on one side, then flip. Remove with basket stainer, onto paper towels. Sprinkle with kosher salt – enjoy!
Tips: do not over crowd your onion rings – this allows for faster cooking… Allow your oil to get HOT before cooking the onion rings – this assures the oil cooks the onion rings and not just absorbs into them… The buttermilk does not make your rings taste sour – just keeps them light and crispy.