We always need a turkey moratorium AFTER Thanksgiving. My thinking went this way – Thanksgiving was in November. Turkey is by now a distant memory. Hence – my post on turkey meatloaf. Meatloaf is one of those foods like quiche, or muffins, or soup – that can be made a thousand different ways. Once you get the hang of the right ratio of meat to spices to eggs to bread crumbs you can go in whatever direction pleases you (or whatever direction your fridge contents push you). My children and I love turkey sausage, especially Trader Joe’s sweet Italian turkey sausage. We cook with it all the time. It makes an excellent addition to meatloaf. This recipe can be made shopping solely at Trader Joe’s. Remember, I don’t work at TJ’s. I don’t know anyone who does. I don’t own TJ’s (though wouldn’t that be nice?). I just shop there, like you do.
Turkey Sausage Meatloaf (8 servings)
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 lb raw sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- 2 eggs lightly beaten
- ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons ketchup
- ½ cup onions, finely diced
- 2 large shallots, peeled and finely diced
- 2 cloves garlic, finely diced
- 3 tablespoons of chives, finely diced
Mix all of the ingredients together EXCEPT the last two tablespoons of ketchup. Cover the meatloaf and put in the fridge for an hour, or overnight. One piece of advice – it is important to really blend everything together. I do it by hand, blending the meat as if I’m kneading dough. If the meat is too cold this will be harder to do, and your hands will freeze, which is painful and slightly annoying. Take the meat out of the fridge a good 30 minutes before you plan to blend everything together. The process will be easier and your hands will thank you.
When you are ready to bake the meatloaf preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Form the meat into TWO 9- by 5-inch oval loaves and bake on a lightly oiled 13- by 9- by 2-inch metal baking pan. Just before putting it in the oven brush the meatloaf evenly with your last 2 tablespoons of ketchup. Bake in middle of your oven until a meat thermometer inserted into the meatloaf registers 170°F, which should take 70 minutes, give or take. If you don’t have a meat thermometer slice the meatloaf in half right in the middle. The meat should be totally cooked through with no pink left in it. The juices should be clear. If it isn’t quite done, put it back in the oven. Raw or under-cooked turkey is NOT ok. If you don’t want to bake both loaves at once, bake one and freeze the other. Or bake them both, allow them to cool and freeze one. I have had success freezing them both ways (though not at the same time).
Let meatloaf stand 5 minutes before serving.