I have to give tons of credit to my former boss/ current friend D. She was the one who originally found this recipe, along with many others, online and I have since taken many of them and added them into my weekly dinner schedule! It's a Bobby Flay recipe found here. This recipe is fantastic just the way it is, however, I like to put my own spin on most things I make. It makes me feel a bit more creative than I actually am :)) I started by adding a bit more veg than what's called for in the original. The first time I made it with 2 different color peppers, all I tasted was peppers! The zucchini was great and added some good nutrients but I wanted more nutrient rich veggies to throw in. I decided to go with carrots and mushrooms, in addition to the zucchini, rolled oats, instead of the panko, and only ground beef which was perfect! You could, however, use any vegetable you happen to have in your possession! The mushrooms have a nice meaty texture and once everything is all chopped up, sauteed, and mixed together, you'll barely notice any of the veggies hiding out in the meat! The other main difference from the original is that I'm not a fan of the whole free form meat pile! If you look at Bobby's picture, it looks a bit too much like dog poo with a sprig of parsley on top (sorry, but it does!!). I tried it first in a traditional loaf pan but the hubby and I agreed that the sauce to meatloaf ratio was way off. Too much loaf and not nearly enough saucy goodness! So I decided to try it in my 8x8 square Pyrex... Perfection! By using the glass, it gave the "loaf" a really nice crust all the way around, cooked very evenly, and in about 1/2 the time called for. My sisters decided, while out for a visit, that it cannot be called meatloaf anymore, so it is now known as meat cake :) I serve this with mashed potatoes and cooked mixed greens. The recipe makes about 8 servings (enough for dinner and sandwiches the next day!) It is by far one of my favorite meals!!!
Hidden Veggie Meatcake
- 1 tablespoons olive oil
you can hardly tell there are any veggies in here at all!!
- 2 small zucchini, roughly chopped
- 2 carrots, roughly chopped
- 1 8oz. container of any mushrooms you like
- 5 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, divided (optional! I leave this out bc the kiddo doesn't like spicy!)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 tsp dried thyme leaves
- 1TBSP chopped fresh parsley leaves
- 1 1/2-2 pounds ground beef chuck
- 1 rolled oats, pulsed very quickly in a food processor
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Romano, Parmesan, or any cheese you have (we love pepper jack or blue cheese)
- 1 cup ketchup, divided
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Whisk together the eggs and herbs in a large bowl. Add the meat, cheese, 1/2 cup of the ketchup, 2 tablespoons of the balsamic vinegar, and the cooled vegetables and mix until just combined. Add the oatmeal and mix until well incorporated. Lightly spray the baking dish with oil and turn the mixture out into the pan.
Whisk together the remaining ketchup, balsamic vinegar, and red pepper flakes in a small bowl. Pour the mixture over the entire loaf. Bake the meatloaf for 45-55 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes before serving. Whisk together the remaining ketchup, balsamic vinegar, and red pepper flakes in a small bowl. Pour the mixture over the entire loaf.
|Whisk together the eggs and herbs in a large bowl. Add the meat, cheese, 1/2 cup of the ketchup, 2 tablespoons of the balsamic vinegar, and the cooled vegetables and mix until just combined. Add the oatmeal and mix until well incorporated.|
|Whisk together the remaining ketchup, balsamic vinegar, and red pepper flakes in a small bowl. Pour the mixture over the entire loaf.|