I have always loved meatloaf. My mom made pretty good version when I was growing up, but she cooked it in a baking dish so there wasn’t nearly enough crusty exterior. And she never glazed it the way my friend Stanley’s mom did. But then Stanley’s mom used too many fillers and overcooked hers. Then there was Craig who lived behind my house. His mom put whole cooked eggs in hers. That just ain’t right. This one here though…just right.
- 6 ounces homemade croutons or store-bought garlic croutons
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper (freshly ground)
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 onion (peeled and quartered)
- 1 carrot (cleaned and broken into chunks)
- 3 cloves of garlic (peeled but left whole)
- 1/2 red bell pepper (roughly chopped)
- 18 ounces sirloin (trimmed and cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes, chilled)
- 18 ounces chuck (same as above, chilled)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 large egg (lightly beaten)
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 dash Worcestershire sauce
- 1 dash hot pepper sauce
- 1 tablespoon honey
- Heat the oven to 325 degrees F.
- Combine the croutons, black pepper, cayenne, chili powder and thyme in a food processor and pulse until the mixture is like sand. Transfer to a large bowl.
- Combine the onion, carrot, garlic and red bell pepper in the food processor and pulse until finely chopped, but not pureed. Add to breadcrumb mixture.
- Load the sirloin into the food processor and pulse 10 times. Dump the sirloin into the mixing bowl and repeat with the chuck.
- Add the salt, then the egg to the mixing bowl, and using your clean hands, combine thoroughly.
- Line a half sheet pan with parchment paper. Plop the meat mixture into the middle of the pan and shape it into a loaf. Or if you prefer precision, line a loaf pan with plastic wrap, mold the meat into it then flip it out onto the parchment.
- Insert the probe of a remote oven thermometer so that the tip is in the middle of the loaf. Set the thermometer alarm to go off at 155 degrees F.
- Bake in the middle of the oven for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, combine the ketchup, cumin, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce and honey in a small bowl.
- After 10 minutes*, brush the glaze onto the meatloaf and continue to cook for 25 minutes, or until the loaf reaches 155 degrees F.
- Cool for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.**
* Seems like an odd step, but 10 minutes will harden the outside of the loaf enough to prevent exiting juices from pushing off the glaze. Also, if the glaze went on at the start it would probably burn…and burnt ketchup is never good eats.
**Don’t worry, carryover heat will continue to push the temperature higher. I’ve never had one come out under-cooked yet.