Meatloaf as a rock star is probably not half known to most of the readers here but he is (vaguely!) to me so I’ve been very sorely tempted to call my meatloaf ‘the bat’. As in: Bat Out of Hell, Meatloaf’s best known hit. Don’t believe me, google ‘meatloaf’: the first result is the chubby gentleman trying to look menacing, not your mince roast.
My butcher, sadly now retired, used to sell meatloaf labelled 'The Bat'. The establishment is still thankfully going but run now by a bunch of perfectly nice people who however do not appreciate the pompous 80’s rock. I thought it was awesome – would you find A-deli ham in any butcher’s now? Or a Bieber sausage? Or (I dread to think) a Swift steak? Not likely. Best we can do I guess is have a pork steak masquerading as a bear steak and called The Revenant.
Meatloaf is a gorgeous dish, the mince just needs plenty of fillers. Try making it with pure meat, it won’t work – crumbly to oblivion and not very flavoursome. Whack more Parmesan into it than you think is feasible*. Fry an onion and add in. Pour in some soured cream, crème fraiche or indeed milk and you’re in business. Top up with lots of freshly whizzed breadcrumbs and you’re laughing. And it makes lovely cold lunch the next day too, if you’re lucky (or abstemious) enough to have any left.
*that’s also the secret to great burgers…