This word has been known to strike fear into the hearts of young and old, alike! Often, when people prepare meatloaf for dinner, they are doing so to be thrifty. Thrifty does not necessarily have to mean boring, or bad! When I think of all the terrible meatloaves I've eaten in my lifetime, it's enough to make me cringe! I've had it dry, flavourless, crusty, spongy, drowned, and greasy. Most restaurant meatloaf is TERRIBLE. Never order the meatloaf! It's usually a badly-prepared and overcooked knock-off of Salisbury steak, swimming in vile packaged mix gravy, or covered in some type of stewed tomato goo.
I'm quite confident, that I make the best meatloaf on this planet, after having perfected my technique for over 10 years. If you follow this recipe, yours will be just as divine!
BEST MEATLOAF EVER
2 lbs. raw ground round (beef)
1/2 c. whole milk or half-and-half
1 1/4 c. quick-cooking oatmeal
1/2 c. applesauce
2 T. bottled barbecue sauce (any brand will do)
1 sachet Lipton's Beefy Onion soup mix
2 cloves fresh garlic, finely minced
1/8 t. baking powder (such as Clabber Girl)
1/4 t. fresh ground black pepper
1/2 c. Heinz tomato catsup
2 T. brown sugar
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 t. dry mustard
In a large mixing bowl, combine beef, milk, oatmeal, applesauce, eggs, BBQ sauce, onion soup mix, garlic, baking powder, and pepper; mix well.
Spoon into a loaf (bread) pan. Bake for about 50 minutes at 350 degrees F., or until the juices run clear, and a knife inserted in the centre comes out clean.
Before the last 10 minutes of cooking, combine the remaining ingredients in a small bowl, and spread over top of the meatloaf. You may also finish cooking under the broiler, if you want an extra-carmelised topping (this is what I do). Total baking time is about one hour.
The oats give it a nice meaty texture, and soak up any grease that might otherwise be left floating in the pan. The pectin in the applesauce keeps it moist. The baking powder lends a bit of loft, so it's not like a rock.
I solemnly promise that this meatloaf will be tender, flavourful, and delicious....and the best you have ever eaten!