Last week I made meatloaf twice...This was my second attempt. The first time following a recipe, a recipe that I was remembering from my head. Now I never seem to be able to follow recipes, but somehow in my head teaspoons of salt got switched for TABLESPOONS and I even put in a couple extra. I have no idea where my head was. It was not edible. UGHHH! That never happens to me. Sometimes not everything tastes wonderful, but never so bad you can't eat it...but this was! Michael said it tastes like a salt lick...and he was right!
Meatloaf was not going to kick my butt...So I knew I was making another (less salty) meatloaf for dinner tomorrow night. So the next morning I made a trip to the grocery store. On my way back home, I had a flat tire. No problem, I have a spare. So I get out jack the car up...um I've had this problem before...my jack will not jack the car up all the way...it just gets stuck! I'm not far from home...maybe a few miles. I'll just walk and take a shortcut walking along side the railroad track...with all my groceries! Again I'm wondering where my mind is half of my groceries would have been just fine left in the car.
The first thing I lost was a gallon of tea. I had to abandon it...it was just too heavy to carry. Then all my bags started busting. When I got home I only had one bag and a magazine under my arm. So half my groceries are littered down the railroad track, but at least I have the ingredients to make my meatloaf...hence the name "Railroad Meatloaf"...lol
This meatloaf is inspired by Donald Link's Post-K Meatloaf...served at his New Orleans restaurant Herbsaint, after Hurricane Katrina...And possibly the best meatloaf I've ever eaten. It's not the meatloaf most of us are used to since the ketchup is put into the meatloaf, instead of on top.
Since it's formed into free-form loaves, the grease is able to run out out and you get a wonderful crust over the entire loaf.
4 strips bacon
1 medium onion, finely diced
1 celery stalk, finely diced
1 carrot, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp kosher salt, divided
1/2 tsp dried thyme leaves
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flake
1/2 cup ketchup
3 tbs Worcestershire sauce
2 tbs brown sugar
2 lbs ground beef
1 & 1/2 cups dry bread crumbs
1 whole egg, plus a yolk
In a skillet over medium heat, saute the bacon until the fat is rendered (do not cook until crisp), about 5 minutes. Add the onion, celery, carrot, garlic, salt, thyme, black pepper, crushed red pepper; saute until the vegetables are tender. Add the ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, and brown sugar; stir and continue to cook until the sauce thickens, maybe a couple minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool completely. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl mix together (using your hands) the cooled sauteed vegetables, ground beef, bread crumbs, egg, egg yolk, and 1 tsp kosher salt. When well combined form into 2 loaves on a 9x13 pan. Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Uncover and bake for 15 to 30 minutes, until a crust begins to form.