WHERE DID SUMMER GO? And as if to punctuate it's departure, it rained heavily, moment's after Labor Day ended.
My mother. Who's always on hand to offer quick recipes and deft kitchen advice, emailed me her Basic Apple Meatloaf recipe. Comfort on a rainy night! Great for my son's dinner, (the apple is a good way to sneak in additional fruit, kid's love the natural sweetness it adds, and it also helps keep the meat really moist). And the layers of cheese, melted inch-deep on top, seal the deal. (Who can resist the combination of apple and cheese?). This meatloaf is delicious with creamy garlic mashed potatoes and steamed broccoli. Then the lunchbox dilemma is solved for the next day, by thick-slicing it, and putting it on fresh country loaf or brown bread, and adding pickle relish, yellow mustard—or just plain old ketchup.
I love it when one dish works two ways.
FOR DINNER: Take one medium Onion and chop finely. Peel, and then grate: 1 Granny Smith Apple, 1 Medium Carrot, and 1 Medium Potato. Saute the chopped Onion, grated Apple, Carrot and Potato in Olive Oil, in a fry pan until tender. (About 10 minutes.) Season with Salt and Pepper. Put the sauteed vegies in a large mixing bowl. Add 1.1-ish lbs of Ground Pork. (If you can get a mixture of Pork, Veal and Beef, that would also work well too). Pulse 1 slice of brown bread in food processor, until it resembles breadcrumbs and add that to the bowl as well as 1 lightly beaten Egg, 3 tablespoons of Ketchup. Mix or squish everything together with your hands, (it will be warm at first from the sauteed vegies) then place the entire mixture in a loaf pan. Grate a handful of Medium/Sharp cheddar and place over the top. Bake in a 350 degree oven, for 45 minutes.
Serve meatloaf with Creamy Garlic Mashed Potatoes and steamed Broccoli, or Green Beans and more ketchup.
FOR SCHOOL LUNCH: After refrigerating over night, slice a wedge of the 'meatloaf', and place it inside 2 slices of fresh bread. Add Ketchup, Salt and Pepper— to taste. You can even grate some more cheddar, if you wish.
Wrap tightly in parchment paper or plastic wrap and place in a school lunch container, with crunchy potato chips, and apple slices.
NOTE: This sandwich would also work well as weekend lunch. Spread softened butter either side and grill the sandwich, in a hot pan, until the cheese melts. A meatloaf 'grilled cheese'. Serve with a small mug of warm tomato soup.