Classic Meatloaf (now with Oatmeal!)

OatmealMeatloafSlicesbfLOYou may recall our cupboard up over the refrigerator; where all our holiday baking supplies go to live out their days in quiet desperation – really, it’s all just heartbreak and jello boxes. Irregardless; while rummaging for a fresh bag of flour, I came across this super sized box of oatmeal. Mid July is not, normally, big ole bowl o’ oatmeal kind of weather here on the edge o’ the LibrarybfLOprairie, and I’m not lovin’ the idea of this box of oats banging around until the first frost; what to do?

A quick run downstairs to our book corner (literally) came up with ‘365 Ways to Cook Hamburger and Other Ground Meats’, and this recipe for a meatloaf made with oats in place of breadcrumbs (or panko, for those thinking back to my other favorite meatloaf recipe) popped out at me. I would think that using oatmeal in place of panko would make this a nice meatloaf offering for any friends and family who  might have wheat issues, and the lack of milk in the mix would make it a good option for those lactose intolerant amongst us. I adjusted the recipe to my preferences and we ended up with a fine simple supper.

•1 lb ground beef
•1/2 lb each ground pork and/or veal
•1 small onion, chopped (I used a good-sized onion, as well as three or four garlic cloves and some carrot, all diced – I would’ve added celery and green, yellow or red peppers as well, but we were out)
•1 egg, beaten
•2/3 cup rolled oats
•1/2 cup ketchup
•1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
•1 tsp salt
•1/4 tsp pepper

•3 tbsp ketchup
•1 tbsp yellow mustard
•Additional add ins to your liking – I added some Pickapeppa sauce

Sauté onion, garlic and carrots in olive oil until the onion is translucent (I also added the salt and pepper at this point) but not browned or caramelized. Set aside to cool. I should add that I think this is one of the most important steps when making meatloaf (or meatballs, for that matter). Cooking (and allowing to cool) the veggies before adding them to the mixture mellows everything out a bit, and allows the flavors to blend really well; so you get a nice, overall taste, instead of distinct notes of whatever veggies you’ve decided to add.

Heat oven to 375º and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil (oil the foil or coat with cooking spray).

Combine cooled veggies with egg, oats, ketchup and Worcestershire. Add the meat and mix well to combine.

OatmealMeatloafNoPanbfLORinse a loaf pan with water and shake out, but don’t dry. Pack meat mixture into pan; then invert and unmold onto foil lined baking pan. You can leave the meatloaf in the pan and bake it on a baking sheet, but it won’t be as crusty.

Bake 45 minutes. Stir glaze together, spread over top of the loaf and return to the oven for another 15 minutes or so.

Remove from oven and let stand for five minutes before slicing. What’s not to love?

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