Meat Loaf, Butternut Squash,
Southfacin’ Cook, Patsy Brumfield
PATSY’S MEAT LOAF
My family loves meat loaf, so whenever I make it, I make a lot so we can have leftovers for sandwiches. Here’s one way to do it.
EQUIPMENT: Large baking sheet, wire baking rack, aluminum foil, vegetable spray, 2 large mixing bowls, microplane, measuring equipment, cutting board, chef’s knife, can opener, metal spatula, meat thermometer, paring knife, large non-stick skillet, small bowl, small paint brush (kitchen use only)
1 large yellow onion
½ pound mushrooms (white or brown)
4 cloves garlic
4 stalks celery
Vegetable oil spray
1 pound ground buffalo meat (bison)
1 pound ground beef (85% lean, 15% fat)
1 pound mild Italian pork sausage
1 pound ground lamb (double beef, if you don’t use lamb)
1 cup Italian bread crumbs
½ cup dried parsley
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground pepper
1 Tablespoon dried oregano
4 ounces tomato paste
4 slices bacon
Catsup and hot sauce for glaze
LET’S GET STARTED
Finely chop celery, medium-chop onions and mushrooms. Grate garlic with microplane. Heat non-stick skillet on medium, add 1 Tablespoon olive oil then onions. Sprinkle salt to get sauté going. When onions start to look translucent, add celery and mushrooms. Stirring occasionally, heat about 10 minutes until softened. Stir in garlic and remove from heat. Cool.
While veggies sauté, start blending meats in large mixing bowl. I like to layer each one in pinches so I don’t have a big ole block of one kind or another. For example, I’ll start with pinches of buffalo, top that with half the Italian sausage meat, then ground beef, then lamb and top with the rest of the sausage. With my hands – no better mixing tool! – blend your meats together until you really can’t tell you had layers. This is important so you don’t have a big hunk of one kind or another. Blend, blend.
In the other mixing bowl, combine bread crumbs, parsley, cinnamon, salt and pepper, oregano, eggs and tomato paste. When you’ve got that nicely done, add cooled veggies to blended meat. Blend again, then add bread crumb mixture and blend until thoroughly mixed.
Preheat oven to 425.
Line baking sheet with foil, top with wire rack. Lightly spray rack with cooking oil.
Divide meat loaf mixture in half (I like to take out about ½ cup for a small loaf I can “test” before serving the others. See the photos for what I mean.) Place half the meat mixture on your cutting board and shape into a loaf. Repeat with rest of mixture. Place a strip of bacon length-wise on each loaf and cross with shorter strips.
Insert meat thermometer into center of one of the loafs, then cover both of them with foil (careful to keep foil away from thermometer). Meanwhile, mix your glaze: about 1/3 cup catsup with a teaspoon of hot sauce.
Bake loafs until thermometer shows meat has reached about 100 internal temperature. Remove from oven, remove foil and brush on glaze. Return loafs to oven, lower temperature to 350 and bake until internal temperature reaches 160 for medium or 170 for well-done. (Remember, the temperature will continue to rise for several minutes after you’ve taken them out, so if you’re a definite 160-person, remove loafs at about 155 reading.) When they’re done, do not remove thermometer (or the juice will run out!) and let them cool at least 20 minutes before serving. Use metal spatula to carefully lift each from the rack then move them to a serving platter or your cutting board.
(hope you have leftovers!)
BUTTERNUT SQUASH & PEAS
Ever wonder what to do with a big ole butternut squash? The best answer is not to do too much. Here’s one easy, pretty way to change up your Sunday side dishes.
EQUIPMENT: Baking sheet, aluminum foil, chef’s knife, microplane, cutting board, medium mixing bowl, large serving spoon, pastry cutter or potato masher, measuring equipment
1 large butternut squash
olive oil spray
4 Tablespoons unsalted butter
¼ teaspoon grated nutmeg
Salt, pepper to taste
¾ teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 green onions, finely chopped (use another for garnish)
1 C green peas, frozen and microwaved
LET’S GET STARTED
Oven on 425. Rinse and dry squash. Squarely slice off stem end. Stand squash on cutting board sliced-off stem end down. With your chef’s knife, slice squash in half long-wise. Use your large metal serving spoon to dig out the seeds and fuzzy stuff in the squash cavity.
Line baking sheet with foil, lightly spray with olive oil. Place squash cut-side down. Roast until fork-tender or about 30-40 minutes. Cool about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, finely chop green onions, saving some for garnish. Microwave frozen peas 5 minutes. Set aside.
When squash is ready to handle, use serving spoon to scoop our squash flesh. If you scoop out some squash peel, just lift it away with a paring knife. Scoop squash into mixing bowl with butter. Add salt and pepper, chili powder, nutmeg and cinnamon.
Lightly mash. Taste for more salt or spices. Fold in onions, then peas.
Top with sprinkling of pistachios and extra green onions.