Besides Mexican food, one of my favorite American inspired recipes to prepare for a dinner with family and friends is meatloaf. It’s one of my husband’s all time favorites, so I like to indulge his meatloaf cravings now and then. For today’s blog post, I just had to add a few of my favorite Mexican ingredients that would typically found in a basic salsa. Tomato, onion, jalapeño and cilantro to start. Then for some extra flavor, I added some crumbled cotija cheese and sliced olives with pimento. And no matter what kind of meatloaf I prepared the glaze is pretty much always the same for me. We really enjoy the combination of balsamic vinegar with ketchup. Add a few dashes of hot sauce and fresh cracked pepper and it’s the most tasty finish. If you are thinking that a two pound meatloaf is too large for a small family, think again! It’s great for sharing with friends and freezes quite well.
Stuffed Meatloaf with Mexican Flavors
Tips~ Can’t say this enough. Invest a few dollars and purchase a meat thermometer. It a sure way to deliver meals that are not overdone or dried out.
Tips~ Steamed corn with a little unsalted butter and chile limon powder and a smashed potato mixed with some smoky chipotle pepper are excellent sides for this Mexican flavored meatloaf.
2 pounds ground chuck
Kosher salt, pepper, granulated garlic, onion powder, crushed oregano, red pepper flakes, dried cilantro(optional)
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup torn pieces of bread(I used half of a bolillo roll)
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup sundried tomatoes, chopped fine
1/3 cup green onions, sliced
1/3 cup cilantro, chopped
2 jalapeños, sliced into rings or seeded and diced
1/4 cup olives with pimento, sliced
1/2 to 3/4 cup cotija cheese, crumbled or your favorite shredded cheese
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons hot sauce( I used cholula with garlic)
1/3 cup ketchup
Fresh cracked pepper, to taste
Tips~ Prep, prep, and prep some more. Prep in shifts, lol!
1. In a large bowl add the ground chuck and break up with a wooden spoon. In a small bowl, combine 2 teaspoons each of the spices listed and mix well. Add this mixture to the beef and mix into the beef without working the beef too much. Add in the eggs. Mix bread with milk just until bread it moist. Add to meatloaf and fold it all together.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil paper and wax paper. Transfer your meatloaf mix onto the lined baking sheet and form into rectangle shape. Spread the ingredients for filling evenly over the surface of meatloaf, leaving a one inch border all the way around.
3. Turn pan with short end towards you. Using the wax paper, lift the filled meatloaf and gently start rolling it away from you to form a roll until you end up with the seam at the bottom. Pull the wax paper out and use your hands to finish forming the meatloaf and seal the ends. Place in the oven on the middle rack.
4. Prepare the glaze by mixing all of the ingredients listed, set aside. You will bake the meatloaf for 1 hour, rotating the pan halfway throught he cooking time. Remove meatloaf from oven, coat generously with the glaze on top and sides. Bake for another 15 minutes. Last two minutes under the broiler. Remove from oven and let rest for a good 20 minutes before slicing. Yields 8 servings.
Tips~ Internal temperature of meatloaf should be at least 155-160 degrees F.
Tips~ you can use any kind of bread in the meatloaf. No bread? Blend the milk with some crackers or torn pieces of corn tortilla.
Tips~ You want to press out the ground beef to about 11X14 in size and maybe 1/2 an inch thick. Sun dried tomatoes are ideal for stuffing because they do not contain the water that fresh tomatoes do. No soggy meatloaf.
Tips~ I cook with what i have available on most days. Cilantro could be switched out with some parsley and instead of cotija, add some shredded colby jack or an extra sharp cheddar.
Tips~ If you wanted, you could slice the meatloaf into 2-4 sections, wrap tight in plastic wrap and freeze it. You could then bring out the smaller versions and bake them when needed.
Tips~ Letting the meatloaf rest after it comes out of the oven is important. Try to slice it too soon, and it tends to fall apart.
Tips~ Freeze individual slices of cooked, cooled meatloaf. Defrost in the refrigerator for a day before reheating in a nonstick pan with a little olive oil. The best meatloaf sandwich ever!