Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Okay. Don't laugh. This is a classic meat loaf recipe. An excellent meat loaf recipe. My favorite meat loaf recipe. And, it just happens to come from a cookbook I've had for a very long time. Since 1979, to be exact. It's called Holly Hobbie's Cookbook, and it's from a much simpler time. When Holly Hobbie still wore old-fashioned dresses that now are borderline prairie garb. And you can, actually, believe it or not, purchase a copy right now on amazon or ebay, if you prefer, for varying prices. It is a great beginning cookbook for kids. But all this is beside the point.
This meat loaf is Good. Number One came home wanting meat loaf, which gave me the perfect opportunity to share my beloved recipe with you. Tonight, we're making ours out of venison, but ground beef is the usual. What makes this recipe unique, I suppose, is that instead of adding bread crumbs, as the recipe calls for, I use oats. Old-fashioned oats, and it is delicious. All of the ingredients in this are just right for a perfect meat loaf.
Because our venison is packaged in approximately one pound packages, I rounded up to 2 pounds. I threw in a bit extra of the ingredients (1 small onion, 2 carrots, a heaping 1/2 cup of oats). I still just used one egg and 1/2 cup of milk.
The meat loaf is moist and tasty, and everyone loved it. You can see the bits of carrot and onion in the loaf. If you think you don't like meat loaf, this meat loaf might make you think differently. Try it and see.
Holly Hobbie's Meat Loaf
Makes 4 to 6 servings
Farm style, tried and true. This hearty dish, served with hot steaming vegetables, is welcomed all year 'round.
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup (finely) grated carrots
1 1/2 pounds ground beef
1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs (or old-fashioned oats!)
1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine all ingredients in a medium-sized bowl. Mix well with a wooden spoon or your hands. Spoon mixture into loaf pan. Smooth out top with back of spoon. Bake approximately 1 hour.
Remove pan from oven, and cool 10 minutes on cooling rack. Pour off and discard drippings. Use spatula to loosen sides of loaf from pan, and turn loaf out of pan onto warm platter. Serve warm.
Of course, I left out all the instructions for little kids like "chop onion into small pieces" because I believe you can figure that out. Holly also has a "Helpful Hints" section below each recipe, with hints like, "Always use pot holders when handling hot food." That Holly Hobbie. She's one smart cookie.