We’re having the Blue Plate Special here at our house tonight. I found this recipe a very long time ago in Bon Appetite magazine and it is VERY good. Meat loaf was never on my list of favorite foods as a kid growing up. I didn’t like the look of it, smell of it, or taste of it. And then after I got married, my husband used to ask me every now and then to make meat loaf for dinner. Well, finding a good recipe that didn’t call for ketchup, oatmeal, or crushed up saltine crackers was next to impossible. And then one day I came across this recipe in Bon Appetite magazine and decided to give it a try. The recipe was actually sent in by a reader. The magazine used to have a feature where readers could send in their favorite weekday recipes. It was so delicious that I never had to feel guilty about not making my husband’s mother’s recipe again because he liked this one so much. And I liked it too and that was saying a lot!
What makes this recipe different is that it calls for chopped up green olives. Yes, I said olives. It also calls for Stove Top Stuffing mix, French Onion Soup mix, and white wine. (I have made it with red wine too and it’s just as delicious.)
I used to have to be sneaky when making it around my kids when they were little….if they saw that there were olives in it they would never have gone near it. I also chopped up those olives so fine that they wouldn’t be able to detect them with their eyes. Oh the things we have to do to get our kids to eat! Anyway, this is truly a flavorful and delicious meat loaf. I really should make it more often. It’s been more than a year since I last made this. And tonight, it really hit the spot!
Bon Appetite “Gourmet” Meat Loaf
1 lb. ground beef ( I get the leanest I can find but go ahead and use what you like best.)
1 cup Stove Top Stuffing mix (buy the canister where you can make as much or a little as you want rather than the box.)
13 – 15 green olives, chopped fine. (I buy the cheap ones in a jar that are stuffed with pimentos)
1 envelope Onion Soup mix. (I like “Lipton” brand.)
1 large glove garlic, pressed
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup white wine (Red wine is delicious in this too and gives it a heartier rich taste.)
3 Tablespoons dried parsley (optional)
Salt (I don’t add salt because there is already a lot of salt in the stuffing mix, the olives, and the onion soup mix. You can always add it later if needed.)
Pepper (I add about 1/4 to 1/2 tsp. of ground black pepper.)
Place the ground beef in a large bowl and gently break it up with a fork. Add in the Stove Top Stuffing mix, the Onion Soup mix, garlic, and the chopped olives. Add the eggs and gently mix together. Add the wine, parsley, salt and pepper and mix.
(I once read that you should not “overwork” the ground meat in a meat loaf otherwise you get a dense and tougher meat loaf. So, be gentle….easy does it!)
Once everything is mixed well, with your CLEAN hands, pat the mixture into a ball and shape it into a loaf and move it into your loaf pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for one hour.
Go ahead and go for the full “Blue Plate Special” experience and serve your gourmet meat loaf with mashed potatoes and gravy, and of course green peas.
And if you must, serve it with some ketchup, but keep it on the side. :)