Up until a few weeks ago, I hated meatloaf. Unrefined. Heavy. Covered in ketchup. Gross. Not my thing.
Then, along came Cooking Light, a magazine I’ve begun to subscribe to, and a recipe for meatloaf. I scoured the ingredients looking for ketchup so that I could turn the page and forget this recipe ever existed. But ketchup was nowhere to be found. So I kept reading. I was intrigued. I made. I devoured. This recipe has a complexity and depth of flavor that I wasn’t expecting. The three types of meat give it its complexity, the red wine gives it a nice tang, while the cremini mushroom sauce is the perfect complement to all of the above. This picture doesn’t do this meatloaf justice, but with how delicious it is, I’ll be sure to keep making it.
(Adapted from Cooking Light)
- 1/4 cup breadcrumbs
- 2 ounces pancetta, chopped
- 3 shallots, finely chopped
- 1 cup carrots, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1/4 red wine
- 1/4 2% milk
- pinch kosher salt
- pinch freshly ground black pepper
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1/3 lb lean ground beef (90/10 or leaner)
- 1/3 lb ground pork (lean if possible)
- 1/3 lb ground veal
- 1 tbsp butter (I don’t usually use butter – but definitely worth using here)
- 4 oz cremini mushrooms, finely chopped (you can find these at Whole Foods if you’re having trouble finding them)
- 1 shallot, finely chopped
- 4 tsp flour
- 1 cup lower-sodium beef broth
- 2 tbsp 2% milk
- pinch black pepper
- pinch salt
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Heat a medium-sized skillet over medium-high heat. Add pancetta and saute for 2 minutes. Add shallots and carrots, and saute for another 8-ish minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add tomato paste; cook for 1 minute. Add wine; cook until liquid is almost entirely evaporated (around 2 minutes).
- Remove pan from heat and let cool at least 5 minutes. It is important to cool this mixture before combining with other ingredients because if it is not cool, it will begin to cook the meat, egg, etc. Save the pan for making the sauce. Do not clean the pan or discard any of the crumblies that stick to the bottom of the pan. These will make your sauce better, I promise.
- Combine breadcrumbs, pancetta mixture, milk, salt, pepper, egg, and all three meats. Mix gently until all combined.
- Transfer mixture into a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan coated (heavily) with cooking spray. Not using the cooking spray will make you sad when it’s time to clean up. Do not pack the mixture in, but rather just spread it out so that it’s even.
- Bake at 350 for 40 minutes.
- When there is about 10 minutes left until the meatloaf comes out of the oven, go ahead and begin your sauce.
- To prepare the sauce, melt the butter in the same saucepan as you sauteed your pancetta, carrots, and shallots in earlier. Add the mushrooms and shallots set aside for the sauce. Saute for around 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add flour and cook for 1 minute.
- Add 1 cup of beef broth and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in 2% milk, salt, and pepper. Cook for another minute. Serve with meatloaf.