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Here’s a succulent and juicy Italian meatloaf the whole family will love. Better make a big one because they’ll beg for seconds.
Meatloaf Is A Family Pleaser
Meatloaf is one of the first things that comes to mind when you think “comfort food.” There’s a good reason for this.
Since ground beef is something that can be extended with the use of breadcrumbs or other fillers, meatloaf is a budget-conscious dinner. And who doesn’t love saving money while eating something so delicious? Of course that question is rhetorical since we all love delicious and saving money!
This particular Italian meatloaf has such a great flavor, you’ll make it often.
Great Italian Herbs
This Italian meatloaf gets it’s great flavor from the herbs used.
I always try to use fresh herbs in anything I make because I find the flavor to be superior to the dried stuff. I grow the herbs I need year round so this is not a problem for me. Outside in great weather and inside with one of those hydroponic growers during the off season.Even if you dehydrate your own, they taste much better than the store-bought kind in the jar.
However, it’s OK to use the jar stuff. Just make sure it’s fresh–that you haven’t had it sitting on the shelf for ages–and use half of what is called for for fresh. For instance, if the recipe calls for 2 tbs of fresh basil, use 1 tbs of the dried stuff.
The sauce here is pretty simple.
The major flavor is basil–and in this I strongly recommend using fresh because of not only the flavor, but the pop of color.
You can buy passata here. It’s widely used in Europe and all it is is strained tomatoes. It has a wonderful flavor too and it’s much better than puree, which can be substituted for it. Passata comes in a box much like juice boxes. However, it’s simply called “strained tomatoes” and not passata. It’s right where the canned tomatoes are sold.
- 1 1/2 lb lean ground beef
- 1 cup soft breadcrumbs
- 2 large garlic cloves finely minced
- 1/4 cup onion finely chopped
- 3 eggs
- 1 tbs fresh oregano chopped -OR- 2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley chopped -OR- 2 tbs dried parsley
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan -OR- Romano cheese
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella
- 3 tbs tomato paste preferably sun dried
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 2 cups tomato puree -OR- Passata
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil -OR- 1 tbs dried
- 2 tbs brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- Preheat oven to 375F/180C. Line a large baking sheet with non-stick parchment.
- Mix all meatloaf ingredients in a large bowl. Turn onto the prepared sheet and shape into a loaf about 10-inches/25cm long. Bake for 45-60 minutes or until meat registers 160F/80C internal temperature.
- While meatloaf is baking, prepare sauce by mixing all ingredient in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until sauce is reduced about 25%.
- Serve sauce over meatloaf.