Thursday, April 15, 2010

This is not your Mother's...?

Each week I have been making one recipe from Jamie Oliver's book Jamie's Food Revolution and passing it on to my friends, family and fellow food bloggers. I have been asking them to pass it on to their friends, family and so on.... Hoping that we can get people cooking at home again. This week's recipe is a very home style meal.

First off I am a vegetarian... So this is an unusual meal for me to use as it highlights MEAT and is aptly named MEATLOAF. So why did I choose MEATLOAF?

First reason is because if I want to cook one meal from each chapter of his book I needed to address his chapter on Beef.  Second just because I have a certain diet doesn't mean that my children should share the same view, they are almost 4, let them decide later on what they want. In the meantime I will cook a mostly vegetarian diet and give them the option to eat what they want. Third and the most fun, is because as a child I hated it (maybe the whole reason why I became a veggie in the first place). An insipid loaf of compressed ground meat, hastily mixed with  dehydrated onion soup mix and saltines, baked and then slathered in a ketchupy tomato sauce. Yum, sounds good doesn't it? Veggie or not, it sounds down right blech.

The meatloaf dates back to 5th century, the romans had their own version of it, it is related to the Italian meatball and has a very practical application, it makes use of the meat that would normally be chucked. We know it as a convenience food that out parents would pre-make and order us to put in the oven an hour before they got home. This is something different....

Pot-Roast Meatloaf
from the chapter Homely Ground Beef
  • 2 medium onions
  • olive oil
  • course salt & freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tsp each ground cumin and coriander
  • 12 plain crackers
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 heaped tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 lb ground beef- organic, grass fed etc, etc....
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cloves garlic 
  • 1/2-1 fresh hot chile (optional)
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 15 oz can of chick peas, drained
  • 1 28 oz can of diced tomatoes
  • 12 slices bacon- organic, grass fed etc, etc...
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary 
  • 1 lemon
You can prepare the meatloaf in advance, just put in the fridge covered until needed or if you are making right away preheat the oven to 475 F.

To make the loaf, finely dice one onion. Heat a pan over medium heat with 2 lugs (his words not mine) of olive oil, sauté onion, pinch of salt and pepper, cumin and coriander. Stir frequently. When soft and nicely golden (not crispy). Remove from heat, and put in a bowl to cool. Take the crackers and bash them up either in a towel or in a mortar and pestle. In the bowl add dried oregano, mustard ground beef, egg and crackers. Combine all ingredients, hands are best! Move to a cutting board and form into a log shape. Rub with more olive oil. Move to an oven safe dish, turn down oven to 400 F and bake for 30 mins.*


To make the sauce peel the second onion and large dice, peel and slice the garlic and finely chop the hot pepper (optional). Move to a large sauce pan on medium heat with 2 lugs (again his words) of olive oil. Cook for 7 mins, stirring frequently. Add Worcestershire sauce, paprika, chickpeas, tomatoes and balsamic vinegar. Bring to a boil and turn down and simmer for 10 mins. Check for seasoning. The loaf should almost be done!!!

Finishing up! Remove the needles from the rosemary and place in a bowl. Take the roast from the oven and remove from the dish. Pour the fat over the rosemary and mix up to coat. Put the roast back in the dish and ladle the tomato sauce over  and around the roast, top with slices of bacon and sprinkle the rosemary. Put back in the oven and bake for an additional 15 mins until the bacon is crispy.**

While the meatloaf is finishing off make a nice green salad!

To serve, slice up the loaf, ladle on the sauce and add a squeeze of lemon juice.

Again Jamie Oliver says this will feed 4-6, a full loaf will feed at least six!

*I made the full recipe but divided it in two and froze half.
**I baked the loaf with bacon 10 mins and broiled for 5 and it was perfect- my cooking times were slightly altered because I was making a smaller loaf.

So once again if you blog about this recipe and pass it on to others, share your link with me, or if you have another recipe you wish to pass it on share a link. Leave your link in the comments and I will create a separate link in the body of the text!

photos by me!

PS.... Still a veg, I used the delicious yummy sauce & a veggie patty as my meatloaf....

The meat for this dish cost about $11 and I had everything else in my pantry. Again this recipe start to finish took about 45 mins- that was with making a salad and cleaning my cooking dishes.


  1. I'm not usually a meatloaf fan, but this one does look GOOD! I also love Jamie Oliver's show, can't wait to see it tonight!

  2. I made it last night! It was delicious!!! Even my 3 yr old chowed down :) Thanks for the pass it on this week Megan!!

  3. @Sweet and Savory, The sauce alone was fantastic combined with the unique but very simple preparation of the meatloaf caused my family to eat bite after bite until the end. Luckily I now have another one in the freezer. Phew- it was good.

    @Andrea, I will get the my McLinky working again but until then I'll add yours to the body of the blog... Thanks for playing! I had the same thought why not put the chick peas in the loaf? One thing about convenience food is not getting multiple dishes dirty!

  4. looks wonderful and I adore your approach with your kids to let them try meat



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