October 19, 2011

Sometimes Mini Is Better

I love a good slab of meatloaf.  Meatloaf is a comfort food.  Snuggled up against a mound of mashed potatoes and some homemade gravy, meatloaf says, "Welcome, home.  Pull up a chair, dig in and stay a while."

I actually really like my meatloaf recipe: it has a great flavor but I found it either seemed slightly dry or would fall apart into a crumbly mess when I tried to serve it.

Until this week. With a little inspiration from Myra over at My Blessed Life, I made some awesome rockin' Mini Meatloaves that even impressed my recently-very-picky 8 year old. The key: baking the meatloaf in muffin tins. Muffin tins?!? Who woulda' thought? (Thanks for the tip, Myra!)

I served the meatloaf with steamed buttered carrots (with a dash of salt and a pinch of brown sugar). The meatloaf was moist, easy to dish up and full of flavor.  My 12 year liked them so much he didn't even talk once during the whole meal because he was so busy eating - and he even went back for seconds.  In fact, after supper I caught him scraping out the bottom of one of the muffins cups. I call that success!

Sorry I don't have a better picture - but we were hungry and wanted to eat! Anyhow, let's get to the good part.

Mini Meatloaves

1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup BBQ sauce
1.5 lbs lean ground beef
3/4 cup milk
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 small onion, chopped (or 1 tsp onion powder)
1/4 tsp ground ginger
3/4 cup finely crushed cracker or bread crumbs

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Evenly distribute brown sugar between 12 muffin cups.  Press down lightly with fingers (see picture).

3. Evenly distribute BBQ sauce between muffin cups.

4. Mix together remaining ingredients, blending well.

5. Evenly distribute ground beef mixture between muffin cups.

6. Bake for 40 minutes.

7. To serve, run a knife in between the edges of each meatloaf and the muffin tin.

8. Lift each meatloaf out with fork and place on a serving plate.

9. Sit down and eat!
      What is one of your favorite comfort foods? Is meatloaf on your good list or bad list? What are you cooking for supper tonight?

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