My father will eat just about anything, including tripe, which is one of the few foods I won't eat. However, there's one thing he really hates: Meatloaf. Once or twice my mother cooked meatloaf when Dad was out of town, but for the most part, I had a meatloaf-less childhood. Until last weekend, it had been a loaf-free adulthood, as well.
I have a little booklet of recipes titled Everyday Meals that came with my subscription to Gourmet some years ago. Among the tried-and-true recipes contained in the slender volume is one for Turkey Meatloaf. Something about the arrival of fall made me want to give it a try, and the results were very tasty. I used ground dark turkey meat from the farmers' market, which gave it a nice rich flavor.
As an accompaniment, I mixed a cup of ketchup with a chopped-up chilpotle pepper from a can of chipoltes in adobe, which gave a nice kick to the meatloaf. I have re-named this a Turkey-Vegetable meatloaf because there are actually as many vegetables as turkey in this recipe, making it fairly healthy.
1 1/2 cups finely chopped onion
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 medium carrot, cut into 1/8-inch dice
3/4 pound cremini mushrooms, trimmed and very finely chopped in a food processor
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon ketchup
1 cup fine fresh bread crumbs (from 2 or 3 slices firm white sandwich bread)
1/3 cup 1% milk
1 whole large egg, lightly beaten
1 large egg white, lightly beaten
1 1/4 pound ground turkey (dark meat)
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. Cook onion and garlic in oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over moderate heat, stirring, until onion is softened, about 2 minutes. Add carrot and cook, stirring, until softened, about 3 minutes. Add mushrooms, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until liquid mushrooms give off is evaporated and they are very tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in Worcestershire sauce, parsley, and 3 tablespoons ketchup, then transfer vegetables to a large bowl and cool.
3. Stir together bread crumbs and milk in a small bowl and let stand 5 minutes. Stir in egg and egg white, then add to vegetables. Add turkey and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper to vegetable mixture and mix well with your hands. (Mixture will be very moist.)
4. Form into a 9- by 5-inch oval loaf in a lightly oiled 13- by 9- by 2-inch metal baking pan and brush meatloaf evenly with remaining 2 tablespoons ketchup. Bake in middle of oven until thermometer inserted into meatloaf registers 170°F, 50 to 55 minutes.
5. Let meatloaf stand 5 minutes before serving.