Creole Meatloaf with Tomato Gravy
- 1-1/2 pounds of very lean ground beef*
- 1 tablespoon of butter
- 1 medium onion, chopped fine
- 1/2 cup of green bell pepper, chopped fine
- 1 stalk (rib) of celery, chopped fine
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup of canola oil
- 2 tablespoons of all purpose flour (for the roux)
- 1 (15 ounce) can of tomato sauce
- 1 can of water
- 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 cup of evaporated milk
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup of seasoned bread crumbs
- 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon of freshly cracked black pepper
- Pinch of cayenne
- Additional flour, for coating
- 1 tablespoon of canola oil, for browning
Adapted from pinterest.com
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place the ground beef in a large bowl; set aside.
Heat the butter over medium and cook the onion, bell pepper and celery until tender; add the garlic, cook for another minute, transfer to a plate to cool.
Wipe out the skillet, and add the 1/4 cup of canola oil. Heat over medium high heat and stir in the flour. Cook and stir until it is browned, remove from the heat, and let cool slightly. Slowly whisk in the tomato sauce, water and Worcestershire and return to the heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
Whisk together the milk and egg; stir in the bread crumbs and add that mixture to the ground beef. Add the salt, pepper, cayenne and cooked veggies; mix gently and shape into a loaf. The mixture should be firm. If it is breaking apart, return to the bowl and additional bread crumbs until it holds together.
In a large, oven safe skillet, heat the tablespoon of oil over medium high heat. Carefully transfer the meatloaf to the skillet and sear on all sides, turning carefully. Pat any cracks that form back together. Note: You can skip the searing process if you prefer. Once all sides have browned, pour the tomato gravy over the meatloaf and transfer the entire skillet to a 350 degree F oven for about 1 hour, basting occasionally.
When an instant read thermometer reads 160 degrees F the meatloaf is done. Allow to sit for about 10 to 15 minutes before slicing. Serve slices with a bit of the tomato gravy spooned over the top.
Cook's Notes: This works best with an extra lean ground beef, so don't be tempted to try a higher fat ground beef because it just won't hold together for the searing process