When was the last time you had a piece of homemade meatloaf?
If it’s been a while then you need to try this recipe with its wonderful blend of flavors.
A staple in many homes, meatloaf is a splendid way to make your food go further without compromising on quality.
A classic meatloaf with this easy meatloaf recipe made in 45 minutes.
Though modern meatloaf is an American creation, the dish’s origins may be traced all the way back to Ancient Rome.
Meatloaf is actually a traditional German, Scandinavian and Belgian dish. In Medieval Europe, meat was finely diced, mixed with seasonings, fruits, and nuts, and formed into pie-shaped disks called pastez.
In France, around the 17th century, loaves of chopped meat and offal were preserved in a thick layer of gelatin.
What is Homemade Meatloaf?
First served by German-Americans in Pennsylvania going way back to colonial times.
To avoid waste, scraps of meat after slaughtering that were not consumed, or sold elsewhere were turned into scrapple.
Meatloaf as we know it now did not appear in American cookbooks until the late 1800s.
This was immediately after the invention of the mechanical meat grinder by German inventor Karl Drais.
The grinder provided a new level of fineness and textural consistency.
Cooks used to have to chop meat with a curved blade in huge wooden bowls.
With the grinder one could buy pre-ground meat directly from the butcher, and process it through grinders.
Thanks to the industrial revolution, refrigeration development, and the growing meat packing industry, meatloaf was available in every household.
How to Make Meatloaf
Next, add the milk, and eggs, then mix well with your hands, for best results, until all ingredients are combined well.
Shape the meat mixture into a loaf pan, then set aside.
Mix these ingredients well to create the topping for the homemade meatloaf sauce.
Place in the oven for a cooking time of 55 minutes or until an internal temperature of 160 degrees is achieved.
If the top of the meatloaf begins to brown too much before it’s done, then cover with aluminum foil and continue cooking.
This recipe can be made with ground turkey as an alternative meat, which I add a tablespoon of worcestershire sauce to.
Meatloaf in America
Cooking meatloaf was a way for families during the Great Depression to extend their food budget by using inexpensive meat, and leftovers.
To add bulk and extend the meat, cereal grains, bread, or saltine crackers were commonly added to the meatloaf, along with spices.
In addition, meatloaf was a symbol of wartime innovation in the 1940s.
Meatloaf had become a staple in America by the 1950s.
Betty Crocker created recipes that were modified by home cooks.
Meatloaf became a standard menu item in American restaurants.
However, it never did make inroads into luxury level restaurants.
Chefs added their own twists on meatloaf, and served it as a sign of gratitude for a dish that has so admirably supported Americans through difficult times.
American style meatloaf is usually served warm as part of a main course, but it can also be served cold, and then used in sandwiches.
It’s considered a traditional comfort food.
Meatloaf ranked seventh among Americans’ favorite dishes in a 2007 study conducted by Good Housekeeping.
Similar Dishes From Around the World
There are several variations similar to meatloaf from around the world.
Faschierter Braten is the Austrian contribution to meatloaf.
It is usually not filled, as it is in Germany, but instead wrapped in ham before baking.
It’s frequently eaten warm with mashed potatoes, or cold with Cumberland sauce.
In Belgium, it’s called vleesbrood (meatbread).
It is usually served warm and can then be served with various sauces, but can also be eaten cold with a loaf of bread.
It is served with boiled or mashed potatoes and brown gravy, and red currant jam to add sweetness.
“If you do not eat well, then you won’t be able to think well, love well, and sleep well.”
It’s usually eaten cold with pickles and lettuce, or as a stuffing for sandwiches.
In Turkey, there is a version of meatloaf called dalyan köfte or rulo köfte.
In Bulgaria, it’s known as rulo Stefani, it’s similar to the Hungarian Stefánia meatloaf.
Chilean meatloaf, also known as Asado Aleman (German roasted meat), is a staple of southern Chilean cuisine.
Particularly in areas populated by German settlers in the 18th and 19th centuries.
In the Czech Republic, meatloaf is known as sekaná (chopped).
The addition of hard boiled eggs, gherkins, or hotdogs is optional.
Lots of similarities and lots of differences, all with delicious in common!
For the Meatloaf
- Mix all the meatloaf ingredients together in in a large bowl until thoroughly combined.
- Be sure not to over mix.
- Shape the meat mixture into a greased loaf pan.
- Mix topping ingredients together.
- Add the topping to the meat mixture, covering the whole surface.
- Place the pan in a preheated oven and bake for 55 minutes at 350ºF (175ºC).
- Internal temperature will reach 160ºF (71ºC) when done.