[center] Meatloaf for Meatheads[/center]
The elementary school cafeteria. Nothing made me hate certain foods more than that little lunchroom in Merkel, Texas.
That dump was so bad they couldn’t make a hamburger taste good. In fact, if you’d never had a burger before and you ate your first one in that cafeteria, you’d surely walk out saying, “Wow, I really hate those hamburger things!”
And that’s exactly what happened to me. I thought I hated certain foods because I’d only been exposed to them at the school cafeteria. Turns out those foods are really good; they just sucked at school. Over the years I’ve had to practically deprogram myself.
Take meatloaf for example. This budget comfort food used to make me gag on sight. Just the smell of it, wafting across the playground and into my classroom, made me almost hurl on my sweet-ass Tron T-shirt.
Bur recently I stumbled across a basic meatloaf recipe and scanned the ingredients: ground beef, bread or crackers, onion, ketchup, eggs, milk, seasoning… nothing too awful there. So I scanned a few “healthy” meatloaf recipes. Hmm, nothing too bad there either.
It was time to face the childhood fear of eating meatloaf.
The first try was okay, the second was better, the third was a total fucking disaster, but the fourth? It was just plain good. And full of protein, healthy carbs, and fiber. In fact, it was legitimate muscle-building food. Bodybuilder meatloaf! Success!
Here’s my favorite version so far:
[center]Mexican Meathead Meatloaf
1 lb lean ground turkey
Hefty dash or three of cumin
Hefty dash of powdered cayenne
Big ol’ helping of cilantro (diced fresh or dried)
3/4ths cup oatmeal
Diced peppers of choice
1 whole omega-3 enriched egg or 2 egg whites
Toss everything but the salsa into a bowl and mix it up with your dirty paws. If you must, wash your hands first, but it’s my opinion that you lose flavor that way. Then pile it all into a 9 inch loaf pan. Cover with thick layer of salsa.
Cook for 50 minutes (give or take 5 minutes) at 350 degrees. Eat with fat-free sour cream if you want.
- I like using lean ground turkey since this allows you to get all the protein and all the satiating volume for fewer calories than beef.
I have nothing against beef, this recipe is great with it, but right now I’m working on maintaining summer leanness, so I choose to lose the extra fat calories that come from beef. Feel free to use beef or pork if that fits into your nutritional needs though. And how about bison? That just might rock.
I don’t like my meatloaf topped with ketchup. If you do, look for some of that newer low-carb ketchup or an organic variety. Or, make your own. (Google it.)
The possibilities are endless when it comes to seasonings. How about Asian flavors like five spice and soy sauce? Then top it with a hot chile paste like Sambal Oelek. That could work. Or Italian herbs with sun-dried tomatoes and pasta sauce on top? That would be easy. Play with it.
Use your meathead meatloaf as a leftover user-upper. In the photos you see here, I followed the recipe above but tossed in a bunch of leftover cherry tomatoes. Carrots, chopped spinach, mushrooms… it would all work.