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Jenise

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RCP: Cheeseburger Meatloaf

by Jenise » Thu Dec 21, 2006 12:29 pm

Once upon a time I had committed to making an Italian meatloaf for dinner, but before I got around to making it I developed a jones for a good old fashioned cheeseburger, which begat the challenge: why not a cheeseburger meatloaf?

And so it came to be, and we loved it so much we ate the whole thing though I made enough for four. This recipe strips the cheeseburger down to four essential flavors: beef, cheese onion, and salt. I served slices atop (don't look, Chef Carey) iceberg lettuce and diced tomatoes that had been drizzled with a simple, light dressing of white vinegar, extra light olive oil and salt. A piece of Texas toast (bread spread iwth butter and browned was on the side. That's it: all the elements of a cheeseburger, reassembled for eating with a fork, and wherein the meat component is seriously oozing with flavor and the lettuce and tomato have been brightened with a light O & V dressing. Bob will definitely be asking--no, demanding--this again. Soon.

Serves four (usually):

1.5 lbs ground beef
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
1 onion, diced and lightly sauteed to soften
2 eggs
2 handfuls panko or soft breadcrumbs
1/4 c milk
several pinches of salt
pepper (optional)

Mix milk egg and crumbs, then add remaining ingredients and mix until blended. Shape into loaf on bottom of large baking dish and bake at 450 for 30 minutes, then reduce to 300 and bake for an additional 30 minutes. The two-temp method insures a crispy exterior layer without overcooking.

The salad: shred/chop one head of iceberg lettuce and dice two tomatoes. Arrange lettuce topped with tomato on four plates. Make a dressing of two tblsp white wine vinegar and four tablespoons of neutral oil. Salt to taste (about half a teaspoon). Drizzle 1.5 tblsp over each salad, and place a thick slice of meatloaf on top of each.

Serve with pan-toasted bread.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Linda R. (NC)

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Re: RCP: Cheeseburger Meatloaf

by Linda R. (NC) » Thu Dec 21, 2006 4:42 pm

Thanks Jenise, I have just added another recipe to my list of new dishes to try after the holidays. I just read Robin's roast potato recipe. These two would be wonderful together, but I'd have to have two ovens to get the timing and temperatures right.

No offense, but this is like what Rachael Ray does to make classic or long cooking dishes quicker and easier. She pickes a traditional dish and takes the essential flavors and creates a new "30 minute" version. You're just doing it in reverse, taking a simple cheeseburger and making a longer cooking meatloaf. Disclaimer: This is not intended to spark another RR discussion.

I'm looking forward to trying this to see how it compares to my "Everyday Meatloaf". Sometimes I take my meatloaf mixture and make burgers out of it. They're delicious and don't shrink up like plain beef burgers.
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Jenise

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Re: RCP: Cheeseburger Meatloaf

by Jenise » Thu Dec 21, 2006 7:47 pm

No offense taken, Linda. You're right in a way, it's what she does in reverse. Except that she's doing it expressly for the ease, and I am only interested in making great food. Be that quick OR time-consuming.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Robert J.

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Re: RCP: Cheeseburger Meatloaf

by Robert J. » Thu Dec 21, 2006 10:45 pm

Yum. I'm putting this in my file and making it after Christmas. You know, if you cover it with french fries (or oven fries) and then cover the whole mess with melted cheese then you would have a take on the classic 'Horseshoe Platter'.
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Robin Garr

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Re: RCP: Cheeseburger Meatloaf

by Robin Garr » Fri Dec 22, 2006 12:24 am

Jenise wrote:I developed a jones for a good old fashioned cheeseburger, which begat the challenge: why not a cheeseburger meatloaf?


This sounds loverly, but here's an idle thought: What if, instead of mixing in the cheese, you held back at least some of it and draped slices of mellow Cheddar over the top just long enough to melt during the last couple of minutes of cooking, or even, possible, drape a thin slice over each piece while it's still hot after plating. Seems to me that would even more replicate the nature of a good old fashioned cheeseburgah. Worth a try? Serve with ballpark mustard and pickle chips! ;)
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Jenise

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Re: RCP: Cheeseburger Meatloaf

by Jenise » Fri Dec 22, 2006 1:49 pm

Robert J--absolutely with fries, if your waistline can take the extra calories. That's why, for us, no fries, and a bigger-than-would-be-in-the-burger salad underneath.

Ditto, Robin, why I skipped the cheese on top, which I too thought of, and I decided it was prudent to skip the extra and I didn't want to pull any out of the loaf to afford a topping. If forced to choose between those two, the fat and the flavor are IN the loaf!

The dish almost make me wish I had a good zin around to drink with it. Next best choice: a five year old Bonny Doon Old Telegram. Great wine, very yummy now, forward enough for the deliberately big, bright simple flavors a burger dish and yet complex enought to satisfy any geek.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov

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