Not Your Mama’s Meatloaf

by in View All Posts, February 18th, 2009

I met Alex Guarnaschelli from The Cooking Loft at a recent Food Network event, and I was amazed by how warm, personable and funny she is. When she breaks out her deadpan punch-lines, she seems more like a stand-up comic than a chef.

But Alex is a chef. She worked her way up in the culinary world by cooking her way through some amazing restaurants, and now she’s the executive chef at the upscale New York City restaurant, Butter. And her show? It’s like taking a short class at the Institute of Culinary Education (where she’s an instructor), without the commute or the hefty price tag.

When I was searching for new content to feature on our Comfort Foods page, I ran across a video of Alex giving a great meatloaf-making tip. (She cooks and tastes a mini patty before putting the whole loaf into the oven.) I decided to try the tip and the recipe for myself. You know, for research. . .

Alex’s recipe is not your typical “mama’s meatloaf.” She uses both ground beef and pork, and then adds a cup of sour cream (which she says helps with browning). The secret ingredient is fresh tarragon, which adds a unique herbal note. It’s different! (And yes, in a good way.)

Most of all, I loved Alex’s sampling tip (my meatloaf mixture needed more salt and breadcrumbs). Do you have any meatloaf-making tips or secret ingredients?

Kirsten, Web Editor

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Comments (5)

  1. Lana says:

    Uh-oh. Kirsten, you had to go ahead and ask about meatloaf, didn’t ya! Haha, mine is legendary! There’s an on-going family joke about it – too long to explain here. But let’s just say my meatloaf has inspired proposals of marriage. (Serve it with caution! lol)

    Secret ingredients? (Shhhhh! this is just between us, k?) Part ground beef, part hot Italian sausage, more milk than you might think would be needed (whole milk – none of that reduced fat or skim stuff!) and *blush* stove top stuffing mix!

    I know, I know, all you foodie purists out there shudder at my use of a pre-made mix. But all the spices and flavorings are in there, and … well … it works.

    Thx, Kirsten, for the post. Brought back some memories! I haven’t made that meatloaf for over a year, I’m sure. Maybe it’s time to revisit that dish again soon.

  2. majuva says:

    What is the name of the Italian restaurant in Baltimore that was featured on Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives in the 2-23-09 episode? Thanks.

  3. Lana says:

    majuva, that was probably Di Pasquale’s. But you might want to check out
    It lists all the Baltimore places on DDD.

  4. Hazel Smith says:

    It looks too good and sounds tasty! I hope to try it soon. Cam’t wait.

  5. Amsamw says:

    Not Your Mama’s Meatloaf | FN Dish – Food Network Blog Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your weblog and wanted to say that I have truly enjoyed browsing your blog posts. In any case I will be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again very soon!

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