I’ve recently started reading a fun new food blog called “The Pioneer Woman”. http://thepioneerwoman.com/ It is a fun blog. She writes well and takes great photos as she is cooking of all the various steps, which I love. A friend and I have come to believe that the woman must have at least two extra arms.
I decided that I needed to try out some of the recipes on her site to see what the actual food was like. I decided on meatloaf.
Why meatloaf? I’m generally not a big fan. It wasn’t something I had much as a kid because I was always worried about what might be hidden in it. But, I had a meatloaf sandwich the other day that was awesome, and this recipe looked good, so I thought I’d give meatloaf another shot. And, it’s covered in bacon, so that’s cool.
Now, when I made this recipe, it was not a complete success. The cooking times that the Pioneer woman gave were way off. She said 15 min prep and 45 in the oven. Boy, was that off! It took me a solid 30 min prep and I cooked mine for an hour. Maybe her oven is way hotter than mine. Unfortunately, by this time it was much later in the evening than I expected and I was starving. So, I pulled it at that time. But, I think it needed at least an hour and a half. We ate it. The flavor was good and I think it had potential to be awesome, but it needed to be a little firmer and solid, which the extra time would have accomplished. So, give yourself at least 2.5 hours to cook this. Don’t start at 8PM like I did. Eating undercooked meatloaf at 11 is a bummer.
But, I think this recipe has potential, so I’m not tossing it. However, unless you are feeding a crowd, you should half this. I ended up with so much leftover meatloaf, it was nuts.
The Pioneer Woman’s meatloaf
- 1 cup Whole Milk
- 6 slices White Bread
- 2 pounds Ground Beef
- 1 cup (heaping) Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese
- ¼ teaspoons Seasoned Salt
- ¾ teaspoons Salt
- Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- ⅓ cups Minced Flat-leaf Parsley
- 4 whole Eggs Beaten
- 10 slices Thin/regular Bacon
- 1-½ cup Ketchup
- ⅓ cups Brown Sugar
- 1 teaspoon Dry Mustard
- Tabasco To Taste
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pour milk over the bread slices. Allow it to soak in for several minutes.
Place the ground beef, milk-soaked bread, Parmesan, seasoned salt, salt, black pepper, and parsley in a large mixing bowl. Pour in beaten eggs.
With clean hands, mix the ingredients until well combined. Form the mixture into a loaf shape on a broiler pan, which will allow the fat to drain. (Line the bottom of the pan with foil to avoid a big mess!)
Lay bacon slices over the top, tucking them underneath the meatloaf.
Make the sauce: add ketchup, brown sugar, mustard, and hot sauce in a mixing bowl. Stir together. Pour 1/3 of the mixture over the top of the bacon. Spread with a spoon.
Bake for 45 minutes, then pour another 1/3 of the sauce over the top. Bake for another 15 minutes. (at least!!! Wait until you get a nice caramelizing brownness on the top and the meat is well done throughout.) Let rest. Slice and serve with remaining sauce.
To go with the meatloaf, I also tried her recipe for crash hot potatoes. These are a win. Like the meatloaf, I didn’t get around to it until late in the evening, so I didn’t let them crisp up as much as I should have out of impatience, but this is a great way to do potatoes and I will be trying them again.
In her blog the Pioneer Woman said this about these: “They’re a lovely twist on the tired old baked potato, and they perfectly embody a quality I always strive to achieve in my cooking: Flavorful, Crispy Surface Area.” I also love crispy surface area, so decided to give these a try. You do it too, you’ll love it.
(These are mine before they went into the oven to crisp.)
Crash Hot Potatoes
- 12 whole New Potatoes (or Other Small Round Potatoes)
- 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- Kosher Salt To Taste
- Black Pepper To Taste
- Rosemary (or Other Herbs Of Choice) To Taste
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add in as many potatoes as you wish to make and cook them until they are fork-tender.
On a sheet pan, generously drizzle olive oil. Place tender potatoes on the cookie sheet leaving plenty of room between each potato.
With a potato masher, gently press down each potato until it slightly mashes, rotate the potato masher 90 degrees and mash again. Brush the tops of each crushed potato generously with more olive oil.
Sprinkle potatoes with kosher salt, fresh ground black pepper and fresh chopped rosemary (or chives or thyme or whatever herb you have available.)
Bake in a 450 degree oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.
When finished they should look like this: