Facing Down My Nemesis

March 11, 2010

I just about peed myself when I read the March itinerary for Barefoot Bloggers. This had to be some kind of cruel joke. Clearly, some cosmic force had it in for old KitchyWitchy this month, because I was being asked to face my Food Nemesis.

The horror.

I was ordered to make the most evil concoction known to man. That’s right folks. The M word.

If you don’t know about my traumatic experience with the M word, I suggest you go here.

My husband walked into the kitchen yesterday and saw me sauteeing a mountain of onions.

“Mmmmmm. What’s for dinner?” he asked.

“Meat Loaf.”

“Geddafuckoutta here,” he said. “No way.”

“Way,” I said. “Some sadistic dillweed at Barefoot Bloggers picked meat loaf as one of the March recipes.”

“And you’re not just punting on it?”

“Nope. Time to face the enemy. I’m putting on my battle armor, and sheathing my sword as we speak. Meat Loaf, I’m coming for you!”

“Okaaaaayy,” he said, backing out of the kitchen. “You have fun with that. I actually love meat loaf.”


You can find the recipe for Ina’s Individual Meat Loaves here.

When I first scanned the recipe, I noticed a couple of things that just weren’t going to fly with me. And since I cannot follow the rules to save my life, I had to tinker with the recipe.

First item of note: Ina calls for ground chuck that is 81% lean. There’s good reason for this. Fattier meat=moist and flavorful meat loaf. However, my butt doesn’t need fatty meat. There’s enough jiggle in that trunk already. I’m pretty sure hubs’ butt doesn’t need fatty meat, either. So I used 93% lean ground chuck.

Which then posed a little problem about how to add moisture back into the meat loaf. I grated up a zucchini and an orange bell pepper and added it to my meat mixture, hoping that would add the necessary moisture and flavor I needed.

Second item of note: Ina directs you to shape the individual meat loaves into six (10 to 11 ounce) portions. Who on Earth is she cooking for? Lumberjacks? The Green Bay Packers? 10 to 11 ounces of meat is hella lotta meat, people!!

I’d actually halved the recipe to start with (I didn’t want all of that extra meat loaf staring at me in the refrigerator later), and I shaped that halved recipe into 4 loaves. Each loaf was about 5 ounces–a much more moderate portion.

However, what did this mean for the cooking time? Did I cut the cooking time in half, or would my meat loaf turn out *shudder* RAW in the middle? I was really not okay with that prospect, so I cut fifteen minutes off the cooking time and called it good.

Verdict: Hubs loved it. I gagged. Sometimes, a girl just can’t rise above her past. Sorry Ina, I tried.

And where’s the picture, you ask? Ahem. Sorry folks. Just TRY to make meat loaf look sexy. Fail. So you’ll just have to take my word for it.

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