Meatloaf peppered with fresh herbs, aromatic vegetables and panko crumbs smothered with garlic sauce. The shining star.
This is Ina Garten’s recreation of one of her favorite meals from 1770 House Restaurant in East Hampton. It’s now one of my family’s favorites too.
The meatloaf on its own is nothing special. The magic happens when you pour on the slow cooked garlic sauce. The meatloaf springs to life. The sauce is a necessary part to making it memorable.
Whole cloves of garlic are simmered with chicken broth and butter, then the soft cloves are pureed back into the sauce. Slow-cooking them for long time like this is similar to what happens when you roast them. Their pungency is tamed and they become sweeter.
The recipe calls for a mix of beef, veal and pork. It would be perfectly fine made just with beef.
This makes a giant 3-pound meatloaf. Lots of leftover sandwiches. While I really love a good meatloaf you know what I love more? The inevitable meatloaf sandwich. You can easily cut the recipe in half but I would keep the sauce amounts the same.
Usually I take many liberties with recipes I adapt to make them my own. This one was different. The only change I made was to substitute green bell peppers for the celery because it’s one of my least favorite vegetables.
Meatloaf peppered with fresh herbs, aromatic vegetables and panko crumbs smothered with garlic sauce.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a large skillet or saute pan heat olive oil over medium heat, add the onion and celery and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent and celery is tender but not browned. Set aside to cool.
- To a large mixing bowl add the beef, veal, pork, parsley, thyme, chives, eggs, milk, salt and pepper.
- Pulse the panko crumbs in a food processor until finely ground.
- Add the onion mixture and the panko to the meat. Use a fork or clean hands to gently toss the mixture together until combined but not compacted.
- Place a piece of parchment paper on a large sheet pan with sides or a roasting pan. Pat the meat into a flat rectangle then press the sides in until it forms a cylinder down the middle of the pan. Bake for 45-55 minutes until a thermometer inserted in the middle reads 155 degrees F to 160 degrees F.
- Meanwhile make garlic sauce: in a small saucepan combine oil and garlic and bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, until garlic is lightly browned. Be careful not to burn the garlic or it will be bitter. Remove the garlic from the oil and set oil aside. (You can save the oil to make a vinaigrette.)
- In a medium saucepan combine the chicken stock, butter and cooked garlic. Bring to a boil then lower the heat and simmer 35 to 40 minutes. Mash the garlic with a fork, whisk in 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper then taste and add additional seasonings if needed.
- Remove the meatloaf from the oven and allow to rest 5 - 10 minutes. Slice and serve hot with garlic sauce spooned over top.
Adapted from Ina Garten