The Great Meatloaf Compromise of 2007

Meatloaf, mashed potatoes, brown gravy, and a side of peas – one of my all-time favorite meals growing up.  Especially the meatloaf made by my paternal grandmother, Sylvia.  Moist, full of flavor from green onions and garlic, and an incredible gravy.  My mom’s meatloaf was nothing to sneeze at either, as it was based on grandma Sylvia’s recipe, but it had bellpeppers and onions, too.  Meatloaf was such a regular part of our dinner repertoire growing up that I assumed it was part of everyone’s childhood.  Well, assuming does nothing but get you into trouble, or in my case, leaves you with a large meatloaf that only you will eat.  Yes, you got it, the first time I made meatloaf the husband ate it, not happily, but he ate it.  After some questioning on my part, he confessed that he didn’t like meatloaf.  Didn’t like meatloaf?  Who doesn’t like meatloaf?  Well, my husband, obviously, stating he didn’t like the texture.  This confused me a bit, as he likes meatballs, and the texture is similiar.  Never one to back down, I continued my line of questioning, and finally, I got to the heart of the matter.  It wasn’t just the texture, but he also didn’t like the flavor combinations in the meatloaf, saying that it was too much like a meatball, but with brown gravy.  Thus began the great meatloaf compromise, a 3-year period of trial and error, which had me creating a myriad of meatloaf recipes that I shaped into meatball sized loaves.  Finally, I arrived at today’s recipe, which he not only likes, but will also eat leftovers the next day.  That, my friends, is the sign of a husband-approved recipe!  I serve these with mashed potatoes or rice, whichever he requests; no peas, though, as that’s a battle for another day.  Hope you all enjoy them, too!

Compromised Meatloaf Printable recipe
2 lbs ground chuck
6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped
1 cup plain bread crumbs
1 large egg, beaten
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup tap water
Brown Gravy

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Line a large baking pan with parchment or spray with non-stick spray and set aside. (I use a jelly roll-sized pan).
In a large bowl, break up the ground chuck. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix gently with your hands. Allow the mixture to rest for about 15 minutes.
Using an 1/4 cup ice-cream scoop, portion out the mixture onto wax paper; gently form into oval shaped meatballs. You will have approximately 24 meatballs.
Place meatballs onto prepared pan, cover with foil, and bake for 25 minutes.  Remove the foil, and continue to bake for another 10-15 minutes, allowing meatballs to brown.  Remove from oven and prepare gravy.

Brown Gravy
1/3 cup canola oil
1/3 cup flour
1 onion, diced
1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 bay leaf
4 cups beef broth
Salt & pepper to taste

Make a roux with the flour and oil, cooking until a dark brown.  Be careful not to burn the roux, as you will ruin your gravy.
Add chopped vegetables, parsley, thyme and bay leaf.  Cook for 3-5 minutes.
Add beef broth, one cup at a time, stirring constantly until roux and broth is well-combined into a gravy.
Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 20 minutes.
After 20 minutes, add meatballs to the gravy, return to a boil again, then reduce to a simmer, and cover, and continue to cook another 20 minutes.  If a thicker gravy is desired, increase the temperature, leave the cover ajar, return to a boil, and cook an additional 10 minutes.
Serve over mashed potatoes or steamed rice.

Since I think meatloaf and mashed potatoes is one of the most comforting, soul-satisfying meals I could ever eat, I’m linking to girlichef’s Two for Tuesdays and Fudge Ripple’s Tuesday Night Supper Club.


13 thoughts on “The Great Meatloaf Compromise of 2007

  1. A man who doesn't like meatloaf? Kindof like my man who won't eat pot roast…wierd! This looks good..sounds like more of a win than a compromise 🙂
    I always enjoy stopping by to see what you're whipping up!
    Did you pick out your gift?

  2. my husband and i were just debating yesterday whether we like meatloaf best on day one…or the next day in a sandwich,,this of course while we were eating something else entirely!!! this looks so yummy! thanks for linking up to TNSC!

  3. Hi katerina! Thank you & welcome to my kitchen!

    Barbara, I know! I thought all men loved meatloaf, too! He's quite the picky eater, as is my son.

    Hi Laurie! Thank you! I love the fresh flavor of jalapenos, and I use them often.

    Heather! Thank you for your kind words, but I should thank you for hosting T4T!

    Welcome to my kitchen, April! Thank you!

    Hi Alex! I'm flattered that you're following me! Love your onion sauce comment. I do love me some butter, but when I make a roux I cook it until it's almost black, and I think the butter may burn, although, I could probably try clarified butter…hmmm, you've sown the seed of an idea, Alex!

    Hi Faith! Thank you, I love all kinds of meatloaf, too. I think the creamy mushroom soup sounds delicious!

    Hey Butter! I know, not liking meatloaf is practically unAmerican! T4T is such an awesome concept!

    Reeni! Yes! Meatloaf sandwiches are the just about the best thing about meatloaf!!!

    Hi Christy! I have this obsession with meatloaf – if I see it on a menu, I am compelled to order it! Drive the husband batty, because I usually don't like it, and end up either pushing it about on my plate or dousing it with Tabasco to make it palatable! And you're totally welcome about T4T!

  4. I love MY meatloaf or my Mom's but I never like what you get in a restaurant. I love that yours has lots of flavor – I think that is key! I am going to have to try the meatloaf meatballs! thanks for linking to Two for Tues!

  5. I can't imagine not liking meatloaf…I grew up on it too and love it to this day. Leftover sandwiches are the best. I like how you compromised and made meatloafballs – bet their delicious!

  6. Not liking meatloaf?!? You're right, I had thought that was unheard of. Go figure. But hooray for compromise, for the sake enjoying a meal together. Thanks for sharing with Two for Tuesday.

  7. I love meatloaf of all kinds and I think your recipe looks incredible! I've actually never had it with brown gravy…would you believe my mom always made it with creamy mushroom soup? Sounds weird, I know, but it's so good!

  8. Hi Louanne! So glad you stopped by the two for tuesday recipe blog hop because now I get to check out your blog! I am now following you and grabbed your RSS feed. I am laughing because my father hated white onion sauce when we were kids and my mother simply put a drop of gravy browning in it! this recipe looks great, but why not use butter in the gravy? Canola oil is starting to prove its not as healthy as everyone thought and everyone now knows butter is good for you! Hope to see you back at the hop again! Alex@amoderatelife

  9. I love that you didn't give up! I'm a total meatloaf lover…the whole meal reminds me of growing up, too…perfect comfort food! This compromise sounds delicious…one I'd love to try! Thank you for sharing it w/ t4t LouAnne! =)

  10. I thought all men LOVED meatloaf, any kind! Your hubby must have a really discerning palate. Glad you found a version he liked!

    Not one of my favorites, but this sure looks like a super recipe, Louanne. My boys would love it.

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