Inspired by Juli of PaleOMG, I decided to make use of my now non-useful muffin pan. Behold! Mini-Mealoafs! Meatloaves. I dunno which one is proper, but “meatloaves” does look pretty weird. Gotta agree with Juli on this one. You could also call them Meatloaf Muffins, but uh, that sounds kind of odd too.
Edited March 27th, 2015. No more PaleOMG for me. NOPE NOPE NOPE.
Or, just call them DAMN GOOD. Cuz they are.
Mini-Meatloaves with Smokey Tomato and Red Pepper Sauce
1/4 or 1/8 of that roast beef you made the other night (cuz I know you made it, right?!), chopped into what I’ll call ‘beef lardons’ or itty bitty cubes
2 – 3 pounds of lean or extra lean ground beef
Coconut oil + butter (or lard, or combo)
1/2 of a medium to large white onion
2 – 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons of almond flour/meal
1/4 can of coconut milk
1 of each: red pepper, yellow pepper, green pepper
2 – 4 tablespoons of chipotle powder
2 – 4 tablespoons of paprika
1 – 2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons rubbed dry sage
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 teaspoon cumin powder
salt and pepper
1 extra clove of garlic, unpeeled
3/4 cup crushed tomatoes
1/4 cup beef or bone broth
Paprika, about 1 teaspoon
Red pepper flakes, to taste
1 – 2 tablespoons coconut milk
First off, cut off a hunk of that roast beef you made the there night thanks to moi, and slice yourself some pieces about 1/4″ inch thick. Now, cut them into tiny cubes, or what I’m calling ‘beef lardons’, French term for the exact same thing, only with pork. Set this aside.
Add your ground beef to a large mixing bowl. Season generously with salt and pepper. Chop up your green and yellow pepper into a dice, and add them to the bowl. Add your ‘beef lardons’ to the bowl, as well as your almond meal, coconut milk, most of your chipotle powder (reserve about a teaspoon), sage, chopped cilantro, cumin, garlic powder, paprika.
Now, onto something completely different. Pre-heat your frying pan to about medium heat, and add your choice of coconut oil, butter or lard. I used a coconut oil/butter combo. Saute your onions in this mixture until lightly browned and translucent. Add a teaspoon of your reserved chipotle powder. Stir. Inhale. Ahhhhh. Love that smell! Add your garlic at the end, and stir gently just to heat it through. There is nothing worse than burnt garlic. Take this off the heat. Allow this mixture to cool.
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. If your mixture is cool by now, add it to your huge bowl of food stuffs! Now…are you ready to get yer hands dirty? Dunk both your hands in and start mixing this all together. Really work on this; you want everything combined nicely. I work this for about 5 minutes, or until everything looks well marbled together.
A cool trick I learned from Roger Mooking from the Food Network, is to make a tiny patty of this mixture, and fry it up. How else are you going to know if it tastes good? So, have at it. Mine was awesome. This means…it’s time to make your Mini Mealoaves…Meatloafs…Muffins…whatever.
I formed the mixture into balls about 3″ in diameter. If it fits nicely in your palm, you’re good to go. Pop each of these bad boys into each muffin tin, and press down just a tad. I oiled my pan with some olive oil. I later realized I didn’t need to. You’ll soon read why.
This quantity makes about 9 of these tasty guys.
Pop ’em in the oven for about 25 minutes. After about 15 minutes, I turned the heat down to 325. Now, watch them. Turn on your vent. The fat and juice will render out and *may* make your kitchen a smoky mess. Or maybe my oven sucks. I set off both smoke alarms, had the vent going, and had to open windows and doors. Wifey was not impressed.
Edited to add: Sister-in-laws are so SMART! I don’t know why I didn’t think of this: put a pan or baking sheet at the bottom of your oven to catch drippings. This will ensure they don’t burn and turn your kitchen into a smoke-house 🙂
ANYWAY. There’s one more thing: sauce!
Add your tomato sauce, one chopped red pepper, one unpeeled garlic clove, paprika, bone/beef broth, chilli pepper flakes, and salt to a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Turn the heat way down, and let this simmer while your loaves are cooking.
After 25 minutes, you will have beautifully browned, juicy, flavourful loaves. Take them out to cool.
I hope you have an immersion blender, also known as a stick blender, or a plain ol’ blender or food processor will do. Make sure you take that garlic clove out, give it a slight squeeze. It’ll pop out of its skin. Blitz your tomato and pepper mixture and add the 1-2 tablespoons of coconut milk to it. Now you’ve got an awesome sauce! Yes, you do!
Place one or two of these awesome loaves onto a plate, slice them open, and pour that awesome sauce you made over them. Devour.