Roasted Vegetable Meatloaf with Mashed Potatoes and Porcini Porter Sauce

Roasted Vegetable Meatloaf with Mashed Potatoes and Porcini Porter Sauce from @freshandfoodie

Meatloaf gets a bad rap, but let’s face it — often times it’s for good reason. It’s not that attractive on the plate, has a tendency to be dry and bland, and come on — it’s called MEATLOAF. Not appealing.

Growing up, my mom made a pretty decent meatloaf. She used ground turkey and shredded carrots in hers, and despite the fact that I always dipped it in ketchup, it was never one of my favorite things to eat. (Sorry, mom.) Luckily for her, I was (and still am) a pretty good eater and no Christmas Story-esque episodes ever ensued.

My husband, on the other hand, loves meatloaf. The first time he asked me to make it, I wasn’t sure how to respond — I didn’t even want to eat meatloaf much less make one. I skirted the subject by convincing him that he’d rather eat something else, but despite my sly workaround, I knew I couldn’t dodge meatloaf-making forever. So I pushed my anti-meatloafness aside and started looking for what I figured was impossible — a meatloaf recipe that I thought sounded appealing and actually wanted to make.

The first time I made this recipe, my husband hurled words of encouragement at me hoping that his “that smells good” and “I can’t wait to eat that” would stick and I’d remember my meatloaf-making experience as a pleasurable one. He looked over my shoulder with excitement as I sliced his portion and upon taking a bite, he declared it “better than mom’s.” Not a phrase to be taken lightly. And despite my hesitation, I actually liked it too.

Turns out, nothing’s impossible.

Roasted Vegetable Meatloaf with Balsamic Glaze

Slightly adapted from Bobby Flay

What you need:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large zucchini, finely diced
  • 2 sweet bell peppers (I used red), finely diced
  • 5 cloves garlic, smashed to a paste with coarse salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, divided
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme leaves, plus a few sprigs for garnish
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • 1/2 pound ground veal
  • 1 pound ground beef chuck
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs (I used whole wheat breadcrumbs)
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup organic ketchup, divided
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
How you do it:
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Heat the oil in a large saute pan over high heat. Add the zucchini, peppers, garlic paste, 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper, to taste, and cook until almost soft, 5 minutes. Set aside to cool. (Note: I actually did this step earlier in the day and then chilled the vegetables in the fridge until I was ready to use them.)
  3. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and herbs together. Add the meat, bread crumbs, cheese, 1/2 cup of the ketchup, 2 tablespoons of the balsamic vinegar, and the cooled vegetables and mix with your hands until just combined.
  4. Mold the meatloaf on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Whisk together the remaining ketchup, balsamic vinegar and red pepper flakes in a small bowl. Brush the mixture over the entire loaf. Bake the meatloaf for 1 to 1 1/4 hours. Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

Roasted Vegetable Meatloaf with Mashed Potatoes and Porcini Porter Sauce from @freshandfoodie

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

What you need:

For the roasted garlic:

  • 1 head of garlic, roasted (see instructions below)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
For the mashed potatoes:
  • 2 pounds Russet potatoes, peeled and diced into 2-inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons sea salt
  • 4 or 5 cloves of roasted garlic, depending on your taste
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup half and half
  • Salt and pepper to taste
How to roast the garlic:
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Slice the top 1/4 off the head of garlic, exposing the top of the cloves. If there’s an abundance of paper surrounding the head of garlic, peel some of it off.
  2. Put the garlic in the center of a large piece of foil and coat the top with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, then pull up the edges of the foil to completely wrap the garlic.
  3. Put the foil-wrapped garlic in a ramekin or on a cookie sheet and roast for approximately 45 minutes.
  4. Remove from the oven, carefully open the foil and let the garlic cool for a bit before using.
How to make the potatoes:
  1. Using a large pot, cover the cubed potatoes with cold water. Add the salt and bring to a boil. Allow to cook for approximately 20 to 25 minutes or until the potatoes are tender. They’re done when the tip of a knife can easily be inserted and removed from the center of the potato.
  2. Using a colandar, drain the potatoes and give them several good shakes, removing as much water as you can. Return the potatoes to the pan and let them sit for a minute or two. This will continue to dry them out so you don’t end up with a wet mashed potato.
  3. Meanwhile, heat the half and half and butter in a small saucepan until warmed. Slowly add the liquid to the potatoes, mashing with a hand masher as you go. As you continue to mash, add the roasted garlic until the cloves are well combined with the potatoes. Stir in salt and pepper to taste.

Roasted Vegetable Meatloaf with Mashed Potatoes and Porcini Porter Sauce from @freshandfoodie

Porcini Porter Sauce

Slightly adapted from Beer Advocate Magazine (Issue #53)

What you need:

  • 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 12 ounces Porter-style beer (I used Mogli, an oak-aged Imperial Porter; 8.5% ABV)
  • 1/2 cup beef, chicken or vegetable stock
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1 cup creme fraiche
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • Freshly cracked pepper, to taste
Roasted Vegetable Meatloaf with Mashed Potatoes and Porcini Porter Sauce from @freshandfoodie
How you do it:
  1. In a small bowl or Pyrex, rehydrate the mushrooms by soaking them in boiling water for at least an hour.
  2. Meanwhile, let the butter melt in a medium saucepan over medium heat — swirling it in the pan until completely melted and foamy. Add the onions and saute, stirring occasionally, until caramelized; approximately 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic and saute until fragrant. Add the Porter and thyme, raise the heat, and bring the mixture to a boil.
  3. Drain the mushrooms from their soaking liquid and add them to the saucepan. Let the liquid reduce by half; approximately 10 minutes. Slowly stir in the creme fraiche and bring the mixture back to a boil until the sauce has thickened. Season with soy sauce and pepper. Keep warm until ready to serve.

5 thoughts on “Roasted Vegetable Meatloaf with Mashed Potatoes and Porcini Porter Sauce

  1. Meatloaf does not get a bad rap around this house. I’ve got several version that I love to make … and yes, my mom made great meatloaf too. Love this idea and that sauce … and those potatoes. I’m instantly hungry.

  2. I’m a total weirdo and have always been eager to get down on a big slice of meatloaf – if made the right way, of, course. And garlic mashed potatoes will always have my heart 🙂

    Beautiful meal !!!

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