Monday, March 07, 2011

From a loaf to a ball...

My meatloaf and meat ball recipe is exactly the same.  Why?  Because I'm lazy.  Because I make them in very large batches using similar ingredients.  Here is my recipe for both:

Meatloaf/Meatball Recipe
1 lb ground pork
3 lb lean ground beef
1 cup frozen tri-color pepper strips, chopped and thawed.  (Buying them this way is much cheaper than buying fresh peppers)
1 large onion, diced
1 cup quick oats
1 large egg
1 - 2 Tablespoons steak seasoning (I use McCormack's Montreal Steak)
1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 350.  In a VERY large bowl mix everything together.  If mixture is too wet add more oats.  If too dry, add another egg.  This should be able to hold its shape without falling apart or being too sticky.

Divide this into two.  Take one half and divide into two loaves.  Place a cookie rack in a large baking pan or use a broiler pan and place the two loaves onto this, be sure to spray whatever you use with non-stick spray.  Combine 2 Tablespoons mustard, 1/2 cup ketchup, 1/2 Tablespoon chili powder and a pinch of cayenne.  Pour this on top of the loaves during the last 15 minutes of cooking time.  Bake until internal temperature is 165, about and hour.
With the remaining mixture, form into 1/4 cup balls.  I use a 1/4 cup cookie scoop because I'm lazy.  Place the balls into a mini muffin pan that has been sprayed with non-stick spray.  Bake for 30 minutes.  I usually do this when we are eating one of the meatloaves that have just come out.  When its time to use just toss them in your favorite spaghetti sauce.
Allow the extra meatloaf and the meatballs to cool completely then freeze.  Just let them thaw overnight in the fridge and reheat.
In the time it takes to make one meatloaf, you can make 2 meatloaves and 2 dozen meatballs.  This is enough for us to get two meatloaf dinners, along with leftovers for lunches for two days and meatballs enough for 3 to 4 spaghetti and meatball dinners or up to 8 meatball sandwiches.
This technique also works well when making lasagna.  I never make just one at a time because I'm lazy.

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