Cooking For Men: Tex-Mex Meatloaf

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 lbs. ground beef (you want the kind that consists of 20% or less fat)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 fresh poblano pepper
  • 2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 jar salsa

Optional garnishes:

  • grated cheddar cheese
  • sour cream

Preparation

You’re going to use a loaf pan to bake this; if you don’t have one already, you can buy a perfectly sufficient aluminum foil single-use one at the grocery store when you get the rest of the ingredients.

Start by de-seeding your poblano pepper by cutting off the top (where the stem is) with a kitchen knife and cutting out the seeds from the inside. Then dice the pepper and the onion into 1/4″ chunks.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Grab a big mixing bowl and throw all the ingredients except for the salsa into it, including the chopped onion and peppers and, yes, the egg. Now: squish it all together with your hands until everything’s totally well-mixed together. Hopefully you aren’t too OCD about slimy stuff, but trust me, it’ll be worth it in the end.

Take your big ball of meat and egg and spices and veggies and shove it into the pan. Flatten it down, making sure it totally fills the bottom of the pan, like you’re about to make a loaf of bread.

There should be room at the top of the pan still, which you are going to use to cover your meatloaf with the salsa. You can use a spoon or a spatula to spread it evenly over the top — think of how normal meatloaf has ketchup on it. At this point, if you want to, you can put a layer of grated cheese, which isn’t necessary but also tastes pretty awesome.

Put it in your oven, on the middle rack, and bake it for an hour. You’ll probably want to use a thermometer to make sure it’s cooked all the way through — nothing sucks worse than meatloaf tartare.

When it’s done, you can garnish it with sour cream, nacho-style, and serve it in slices, or even on a sandwich or in a tortilla with avocado slices if you want to get fancy.

Variations

If you dig Tex-Mex meatloaf, you can also try experimenting with adapting it to fuse with other types of cuisine. For example: instead of using cumin and chili powder and Worcestershire, try using soy sauce and ginger and garlic, and topping it with black bean sauce, and you’ve got Asian meatloaf! You can also make a pretty decent vegan version by using lentils or ground beef substitute and replacing the egg with uncooked oatmeal and the Worcestershire (which contains a bit of anchovy) with soy sauce.

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