Meat Loaf Florentine
Total time: 80 minutes
While this meat loaf is chock-a-block with vegetables it still retains the 'proper' meat loaf taste and texture. We'll eat it for 2 meals - and there may be enough for a couple of great sandwiches as well. I actually used about 19oz (540gr) in this because I had some bits in the freezer to use up.
- 16oz (480gr) ground beef (mince) or beef and sausage mixed or turkey
- 1 medium onion, about 1/2 cup finely chopped
- 2oz (60gr) mushrooms about 3/4 cup finely chopped
- 1 carrot, about 1/3 cup finely chopped
- 1 - 2 ribs celery, about 1/3 cup finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic
- 8oz (240gr) frozen spinach
- 1 tbs olive oil
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup bread crumbs
- 1/2 cup (4oz, 120ml) red wine or beef stock
- 1/4 cup (2oz, 60ml) ketchup
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 2 tsp parsley
- 1 cup (8oz, 240ml) tomato sauce
- Finely chop onion, carrot, celery, mushrooms and mince garlic.
- Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrot, celery, garlic and sauté until they start to get tender, onion will be transparent, about 8 minutes.
- Add mushrooms and frozen spinach; the heat from the skillet will thaw it.
- Cook spinach and vegetables, stirring frequently until spinach is just thawed and mixture is well combined. There should be no visible liquid from the spinach.
- Remove and spread the vegetables on a plate to cool slightly.
- In a large bowl lightly beat eggs.
- Add crumbs, wine, ketchup, herbs and mix well.
- Add meat and mix.
- Add about a third of the vegetables and mix (because the veg are hot we are adding them slowly).
- Add another third, mix.
- Add remaining vegetables, mix well - at this point it's best to use your hand, kneading it like bread dough.
- Put into a baking pan large enough to hold it easily, with room all around, and shape into a loaf.
- Cover and bake at 400F (200C) for 45 minutes.
- Remove and pour tomato sauce over the top.
- Bake, uncovered, 15 minutes longer or until done.
- Remove, let rest 5 - 10 minutes. Slice and serve.
And the leftovers? Sandwiches, of course....
Or just warm up in the leftover tomato sauce.