(Editors Note: I am going to be trying a new rating system. For this post it will be on the bottom. However for the next few, I will start off each post with it. It will tell you what I thought of the dish, and some other odds and ends.)
So, while I was driving home on Thursday afternoon, doing my usual and thinking about supper. I heard a song on the radio, I got thinking about “Meatloaf” (guess which song it was ). Countless times, when I have been watching, some series, some movie, or whatever, somebody has spoken about “Ohh, its meat loaf night at my house……..”
Now Meatloaf is something that hasn’t had a big “showing” in my life. Its not as if we never had it, it just wasn’t something that we had once a week, maybe once a year is more like it. So anyway, I got home and tossed a pack of mince meat into the microwave and started to defrost it while checking up on some emails. Now a few years ago, I was online playing WOW with some friends, and one of them mentioned they were making some “Hamburger Helper“. I of course thought they were making.. HAMBURGERS.. which is the logical deduction from the name. Yet when they starting talking about it boiling it, I got confused and quickly googled it. Only to find out, that they were in fact talking about, what we call “Mince Mate”. A boxed pasta bundle used to make a type of Pasta dish
Of course I can’t seem to find “Mince Mate” on wiki…. But COME ON.. A hamburger, is when you take a patty, made from meat. And put it on a bun/roll. Its not as if there is one type of meat, that is ONLY used to make Hamburgers. allowing you to change the name, to call all forms of meat like this…. “Hamburger Meat”. Yet it does go to show what the masses can do. If you get enough people together who all believe in something, you can change that thing into something completely different. Hence why we have “American English” and “English”. Sometimes though, because of the masses, history, languages and even the truth can be bent until it’s original form is nothing more than a memory of the old.
To make matters worse, is the type of meat used to make the patty. Which you might of noticed, I never quite mentioned the exact name of above. That’s because those of us who speak ENGLISH.. call it “Mince meat”, while in “American English” (and Aussie I believe), Its called “Ground meat”. I again sat back and used the ever faithful Wikipedia and checked up the two words, Ground, and Mince………
Mince: Mincing is a cooking technique in which food ingredients are finely divided. The effect is to create a closely bonded mixture of ingredients and a soft or pasty texture…
- Earth’s surface
- Soil, a mixture of clay, sand and organic matter present on the surface of the Earth and serving as substrate for plant growth and micro-organisms development….
No where does it mention anything about “ground meat”. OK.. Since it is a past tense word, I even tried to look up grinding, Which also comes up blank. To me, when you “grind” something in relation to food, you use a mortar and pestle typish tool, to turn something into a finely ground powder. When you mince something.. you either put it in a “mincer” or chop it up very very fine, i.e: “mincing” garlic.
Silly Yanks… Of course I do still love you all, and as much as I love joking around here. I must admit, that there are many things that have come out of the USA that are incredibly helpful to all of us. Not only in the kitchen, but in our daily lifes.. So, I will let the matter slide, since I am making something that I consider to be an “American dish”. By the way, I also found out on Wiki that. “In 2007, it was voted the 7th favorite dish in the United States according to the Good Housekeeping website.” So I guess it is kinda big on that side of the pond
Making Meat loaf can be really simple, or complicated. Depending on just what you want to do. For me.. its the easy way of doing things. Making the mince meat mixture took me about 5 min after the meat had defrosted. To the mince, I just added the following and mixed it all together
- Green Pepper (Chopped)
- Onion (Chopped)
- Garlic (Minced)
- Spices (Salt, Pepper, thyme, Chilli, Paprika)
- Worcester sauce
- Bread Crumbs
I couldn’t find the loaf tin though, and Claire came to help me. I mentioned that the tin was a bit small and I would end up with some of the mixture left over, and Claire commented that I could use the muffin pan for the extras. This of course not only sounded like a brilliant idea for the left overs, but for ALL of the minced meat mixture. As you can see, from the pictures below, I now never had enough to fill the Muffin pan. They went into the oven at 180 degrees C, for about 30 min, along with some quick oven bake chips (fries for my US friends). Doing it like this, they cooked much quicker than a regular loaf would of, and I had individual little meat muffins for us. I quickly fried up some eggs to go with and voila.
Prep time: 5-10 min
Cooking Time: 30-40 min
Personal Rating: 8/10
Will it be repeated: For sure.. might turn into a family “meat muffin” evening dish
Accident or Design: Both.. I had started off with the idea of Meatloaf, but Claire helped it change into Meat Muffins