Kitchen Domesticity – Mini Meatloaves
In less than two months, I’ll be a wife.
This isn’t a defining change for me – I’m already in a stable, happy, permanent relationship with a man I love, living in a house we chose together, building a life that equally matches both our hopes and needs. So marriage? It’s symbolic. It makes things easier. It’s another gesture we can make to each other that says “We’re in this together because this is what we want.” I love the idea, but I don’t expect it to make any tangible difference in my daily life.
Apparently, my hormones have a different plan. In the past week or so, I’ve found myself cleaning. Relentlessly. Bedtime? Why don’t we finish the dishes and wipe down the counters one more time first? (That concept will have the biggest impact on those of you who are familiar with my nightly routine of turning solidly into a pumpkin at approximately 9:30, no holds barred.) I have tiny fits when things around the house are out of place for more than a day. I find myself straightening, putting shoes in closets, dusting. Dusting!
And as if that weren’t bad enough, my firmly established tradition of letting Calin make dinner is suddenly giving way to strong desires to cook. I want to provide! To feed! To lay a nice table! I have made dinner three nights in the past week. (That’s two nights more than I’ve cooked dinner in the last two months combined.) And I’m not just throwing something on the stove. I’m making a main dish and a side dish; I’m setting the table; I’m arranging napkins and pouring drinks. We’re talking all out here.
Now, I’m a little worried about all this. But the up side is, I am finally forcing myself to actually make all the spectacular recipes I’ve been collecting from all the cooking blogs I’m obsessed with. I’ve collected a few of my favorites as my mini-cookbook for the next few weeks, starting with last night’s choice: Mini Meatloaves with Apricot Glaze. I made a few changes, but this one is taken lovingly from Not Eating Out In New York.
Not my best documentation effort, because obviously it was dinner time and I couldn’t just leave dinner sitting there on the table getting cold while I took pictures… like I have every other time. But we’re working on that.
Okay, so maybe that’s a sparse plate for some of you actual cooks out there, but I’m making an effort here! I’m hopeful that I’ll get back up to about one of these a week, assuming the hormonal domesticity and cooking instinct sticks around, so I’ll keep you updated on future favorites. For now, this one is an instant classic. Recipe after the jump. Enjoy!
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Mini Meatloafs with Apricot Glaze
(Makes 4 single-serve meatloafs)
1/2 lb lean ground turkey (93/7)
1/2 lb turkey sausage – casings removed
1 medium carrot, finely chopped or shredded
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1 Tb chopped parsley
1/2 cup milk or light cream
1/2 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs
1 Tb ketchup
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce plus 1/2 tsp for glaze
1/4 tsp dry mustard
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
pinch of rosemary
splash of red wine (optional)
1-2 Tb apricot preserves
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, combine the bread crumbs with the milk and let sit while you’re chopping other ingredients. Chop all veggies, then combine the egg, carrots, onions, and all sauces and seasonings with the bread crumbs mixture. Combine the ground meat and sausage and mix in with other ingredients. Shape into four mini meatloaves and place onto baking pan.
For the apricot glaze, mix thoroughly 1 tablespoon of apricot preserves, 1/2 tsp Worcestershire, and 1 tsp warm water. Adjust measurements to taste. Spread the glaze onto the meatloafs – a silicon brush works nicely. Bake for about 35-40 minutes or until thoroughly cooked, but not too brown.
Notes: I recommend a pan with sides – these get juicy when they bake. I also recommend making at least a double batch. These make excellent single-serving lunches, as well, and I plan to test freezing unbaked mini-loaves for baking later. I did not have parsley or red wine, and didn’t feel like climbing my back hill to get rosemary, so I left those out. These were still delicious, warm from the oven and again for lunch the next day.