On to the plate

Experimenting with flavours, colours and style of food served at our place

Not your usual meatloaf

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Meatloaf. It sounds so American to me. The last time I had meatloaf I was living in Dunedin. That’s back in 1990. It’s been a while.

Meatloaf seems to have improved with the passage of time. Perhaps it’s that people are more inclined to make a better meal out of it. Though I still couldn’t eat it sliced up in-between bread as they do in America.

Meatloaf served

It doesn’t look half bad really, if I do say so myself.

I am really liking mixing the minced meats. This is again 50/50 beef and pork. To me that’s a fairly bold leap when it comes to a main dish. Yeah I need to live a little more and spend less time looking at fancy ways to “enhance” a sweet dish. But they are fun!

This meatloaf is called Uptown Meatloaf, but I like to think of it as an Italian Meatloaf for all the Italian type ingredients.

Meatloaf ingredients

Oh yeah, the recipe calls for wine. See, now it’s F.A.N.C.Y.

I used a 330gm bottle of Cherry Tomato Sauce instead for V-8 Juice. I also didn’t mince the meat with fennel seeds. I didn’t use fennel at all. I actually wonder if I really missed out on making this meatloaf even more special, by meatloaf standards.

Assembling the meatloaf was a lot simpler than I was expecting. I thought I might have ended up with the sort of slippery mess I had when I made the Brioche Snails but this rolled perfectly. It was so compliant.

Rolling the meatloaf

While the the meatloaf was “roasting” I made a sauce. I’ve never made a tomato sauce without following a recipe. But I’m into trying new things, and crossing my fingers hoping I didn’t screw up.

So here we go:

Sauce ingredients

Tomato Sauce


  • 85gm butter, browned
  • 1 400gm tin of chopped tomatos
  • 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon of oregano, dried
  • 500ml tomato sauce (it’s 97% tomato pureed with a little oil, basil and celery – well the stuff I used)
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Handful of fresh basil leave, finely sliced


  • Place the frypan (skillet) over medium heat.
  • Add the butter to a frypan (skillet) and melt it until it turns a deep brown and smells slightly nutty. That’s browned butter.
  • Add to the browned butter the chopped garlic and gently move it around the pan to cook. But don’t allow the garlic to brown.
  • Add the chopped tomato and tomato sauce and reduce the pan to low heat.
  • Add the dried oregano and thinly sliced basil and gently stir.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Continue to simmer the sauce until it reduces and becomes thick.
  • Serve the sauce either as a bed for the meatloaf, or over the meatloaf, whatever takes your fancy.

Simmer the sauce

You probably can’t go wrong with these ingredients in a sauce. I’m sure it’s not rocket science and you can certainly add other herbs, fresh or dried, the same with fresh tomatos. It was a good sauce and despite its simplicity I was slightly chuffed with myself for just knocking this together since I tend to be one to follow recipes and not generally think for myself when it comes to savoury things.

Melted Mozzarella

We had plenty of meatloaf left over. It was enough for 8 people and there’s just the 3 of us. I wrapped the remainder in tin foil ready to re-heat for another meal. As soon as I wrapped it I realised I should have brushed oil onto the piece that would cover the cheese as I suspected it would stick and when removed would take the cheese with it. I was right. Mr Fussy was seen trying to pry the cheese off the tin foil and then drape it over his meatloaf.

Swiss rolled meatloaf

I love sundried tomatos and having those pop out through the meatloaf was kind of cool. And look at those little pockets of mozzarella cheese.

We all enjoyed the flavours of both the meatloaf and sauce.


One thought on “Not your usual meatloaf

  1. Pingback: Rye Bread–a Craftsy Artisan Bread | On to the plate

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