This easy meatloaf recipe is a classic version, blending ground beef, pork and veal with simple pantry seasonings. But feel free to use your preferred combination of meat, such as half pork and half beef.
Milk-soaked bread ensures a tender meatloaf, and baking it freeform — on a baking sheet instead of a loaf pan — provides more surface area for the tangy-sweet tomato glaze to caramelize as it bakes. Leftover slices can be crisped in a skillet and served with a salad or tucked into a sandwich.
TIME: 1 1/2 HOURS
YIELD: 6 TO 8 SERVINGS (2 LOAVES)
FOR THE MEATLOAF:
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for greasing
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped (about 2 cups)
5 large garlic cloves, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
3 (1/2-inch-thick) slices white sandwich bread (about 3 ounces), torn into small pieces
2/3 cup whole milk
3 large eggs
1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf or curly parsley
2 tablespoons kosher salt (such as Diamond Crystal)
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon dried thyme
3 pounds meatloaf mix (or any combination of ground beef, pork and/or veal)
FOR THE TOMATO GLAZE:
1/2 cup ketchup
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees and grease a rimmed baking sheet with oil. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a medium skillet over medium. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Stir in tomato paste until well combined; let cool.
2. In a large bowl, combine bread and milk, and mash with a spoon until a paste forms. Add eggs, parsley, salt, pepper, thyme and cooled onion mixture, and mix until well blended. Add the beef, pork and veal, and mix gently to combine, being careful not to overwork the meat. Divide mixture into two equal portions and shape each into a 4-by-8-inch meatloaf on the prepared baking sheet.
3. Make the glaze: In a small bowl, whisk together ketchup and Worcestershire sauce until smooth. Use a spoon to spread mixture over the top and sides of each meatloaf. Bake until nicely browned and an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center registers 160 degrees, 45 to 55 minutes. Let rest for 15 minutes before slicing.
This article originally appeared in The New York Times.