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  #1 (permalink)   Report Post  
Sheryl Rosen
 
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Default Crock Pot Twist on Meatloaf

I'm always looking for ways to make nightly work-day cooking easier for
myself. If I don't make dinner--there is no dinner.

That being said, and being a longtime fan of the slow-cooker/crockpot (I
have 2 of them!), I am always trying to figure out how to use one of them to
make my life easier.

I've often wondered if meatloaf would turn out well in a slow-cooker. I
really only use them for braising or simmering, never really as an oven.
But I found a recipe in a Slow-Cooker recipe magazine (one of those special
editions put out by Woman's Day magazine) for one, and while I used my own
meatloaf recipe, I followed their suggestion for how much meat to use and
the timing.

Know what? It was fantastic! There even was crust!!!! The best part of the
meatloaf is the ends, right? Well, the ends were perfectly crusty!

Crock Pot Meatloaf

1.5 lbs ground beef
1 egg, beaten
italian bread crumbs (i don't measure--a handful? more as needed)
onion flakes
salt and pepper
ketchup
shot of worcestershire

Combine the meat with all ingredients, mix very well.

Pat in the bottom of a 3-4 quart oval slow cooker.

Top with about a quarter cup of ketchup. (I just squirted some on top in a
close east-west zig zag pattern)

I did all this last night. I put it in the fridge with the lid.

Then, in the morning, I set the crock part into the outside part. And set my
light timer to go on at noon, off at 6:30. I plugged in the slow cooker and
off to work I went.

When I got home, after a 2 hour trek in sleet, snow and ice, my apartment
smelled like meatloaf! Delicious, warm, crusty meatloaf!

I popped a russet potato into the microwave for 5 minutes, then popped some
frozen sugar snap peas in a cereal bowl into the microwave for 3 minutes....
while I scooped out the potato and mashed the inside with some butter, salt
and pepper. I was sitting down to my favorite dinner of freshly cooked
meatloaf, real mashed potatoes and sugar snap peas within 10 minutes of
getting home.

The drive home stunk, but I had a great, warm, comforting meal waiting for
me when I finally walked in the door!

Life is good.

  #2 (permalink)   Report Post  
Bea Esser
 
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Default

Sheryl...I just experimented about a month ago with making a LARGE
meatloaf in my Mom's crockpot. I was recovering from breast biopsy
surgery and didn't feel like doing too much so I said "Let's try this!"
It was about 2 and 1/2 pounds. I make my standard mix with plenty
of garlic, 2 eggs, bread crumbs to bind, ketchup, Italian seasoning and
soy sauce dribbled into "tracks" I make on the surface. It came out
great after about 1 1/2 hours on high power. Was hoping for crust, but
no crust. It was moist and flavorful. Used the juice in the crock pot
to mix with some gravy mix ( I was at Mom's and she uses that stuff)
doctored with herbs and white vermouth. We must have good taste in
veggies. I also did sugar snap peas, sauteeing them with lemon zest
and garlic, and a rather ancient zucchini she had. And mashed potatoes
as well. Meatloaf....it's so damn good...even in my crockpot. And I
think your crust was the result of a small amount of beef, and longer
cooking time. I was afraid to dry it out. I guess I could go longer
next time cooking it.

  #3 (permalink)   Report Post  
Chris Neidecker
 
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Sheryl,

About the timer...was the crockpot on the timer? How long did the meatloaf
cook?

I will have to try this sometime. It's been too long since we've had
meatloaf I only wish we had the kind of crock pot with the removable crock!

Chris


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Sheldon
 
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Sheryl Rosen wrote:
> I'm always looking for ways to make nightly work-day cooking easier

for
> myself. If I don't make dinner--there is no dinner.
>
> That being said, and being a longtime fan of the slow-cooker/crockpot

(I
> have 2 of them!), I am always trying to figure out how to use one of

them to
> make my life easier.
>
> I've often wondered if meatloaf would turn out well in a slow-cooker.

I
> really only use them for braising or simmering, never really as an

oven.
> But I found a recipe in a Slow-Cooker recipe magazine (one of those

special
> editions put out by Woman's Day magazine) for one, and while I used

my own
> meatloaf recipe, I followed their suggestion for how much meat to use

and
> the timing.
>
> Know what? It was fantastic! There even was crust!!!! The best part

of the
> meatloaf is the ends, right? Well, the ends were perfectly crusty!
>
> Crock Pot Meatloaf
>
> 1.5 lbs ground beef
> 1 egg, beaten
> italian bread crumbs (i don't measure--a handful? more as needed)
> onion flakes
> salt and pepper
> ketchup
> shot of worcestershire
>
> Combine the meat with all ingredients, mix very well.
>
> Pat in the bottom of a 3-4 quart oval slow cooker.
>
> Top with about a quarter cup of ketchup. (I just squirted some on top

in a
> close east-west zig zag pattern)
>
> I did all this last night. I put it in the fridge with the lid.
>
> Then, in the morning, I set the crock part into the outside part. And

set my
> light timer to go on at noon, off at 6:30. I plugged in the slow

cooker and
> off to work I went.
>
> When I got home, after a 2 hour trek in sleet, snow and ice, my

apartment
> smelled like meatloaf! Delicious, warm, crusty meatloaf!
>
> I popped a russet potato into the microwave for 5 minutes, then

popped some
> frozen sugar snap peas in a cereal bowl into the microwave for 3

minutes....
> while I scooped out the potato and mashed the inside with some

butter, salt
> and pepper. I was sitting down to my favorite dinner of freshly

cooked
> meatloaf, real mashed potatoes and sugar snap peas within 10 minutes

of
> getting home.
>
> The drive home stunk, but I had a great, warm, comforting meal

waiting for
> me when I finally walked in the door!
>
> Life is good.


Another method for quick meat loaf is to cook it in the microwave... I
used to do this occasionally many years ago when I lived in
southern-cal, when I still had my large GE nuker with a probe... didn't
like turning on the stove oven because I had no AC back then and it can
get stifling hot in LA. Then my large GE nuker died and I got a GE
under-counter unit, much smaller and no probe, but will still cook a
meat loaf if it's not more than about 2lbs... takes about 20-30 minutes
(depending on size and shape) and comes out pretty good, although
admittedly not as good as one done in a conventional oven. I have
never done meat loaf in a crock pot/slow cooker so I can't compare
results.

Another method, for yoose dieters, is to cook meat loaf in a colander
with a pan underneath to catch the grease... use a nylon colander in
the microwave and a metal colander in a conventional oven... metal loaf
pans with a perforated insert are also available but won't work in the
nuker. I've used this colander method once each, microwave and
conventional oven... results are kind of dry but I suppose if one is
cutting their fat intake it's okay... although if you use a lot of
bread crumbs the colander's defatting is defeated.

For many years now I do meat loaf only in a conventional oven, large
loaves, 4-5lbs of meat and lots of veggies... I grind the meat and the
veggies, and the crumbs too... the time I save by not having to chop
veggies more than compensates for the time it takes to grind meat,
which really is very little time. Meat loaf freezes and reheats
extremely well... so for me making a large loaf when I do have time is
the fastest way to have meat loaf for when I don't have time... just
reheat the LOs. It's not even possible for anyone to know they're
served reheated meat loaf (even nuked) unless you tell them... of
course you'll know... but I think meat loaf is better the next day
anyway. I enjoy cold meat loaf too, so if you're really in a hurry
simply leave a couple of frozen slices in the fridge to thaw for when
you come home from work. Meat loaf is a good thing to have stocked in
the freezer, and I do. I think meat loaf is the most versatile food
there is... versions limited only by ones imagination. One of the best
uses for skinless-boneless chicken breasts (which otherwise is the most
blah tasting meat there is) is to grind them up for a savory juicy meat
loaf... yum... you'll never waste your time trying to keep them from
becoming tasteless shoe leather again.

Sheldon

  #5 (permalink)   Report Post  
 
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no. I have very basic crock pots. Rival had put one out with the timer
a few years ago, but I don't think they did very well. No, I just used
a standard issue GE timer that one would use for lights.

I checked with my brother, who knows about such things, if it was safe,
electrically, and we looked at the watts on the appliance and it was
only 350w, so however you do that math, it worked out to be ok for the
light timer. I checked the rating on the timer--it's some sort of
formula....watts divided by something---gives you the number of amps,
and as long as it doesn't exceed the number of amps the timer is rated
for, you're ok.

And he assured me this would be ok. And I have been using it that way
ever since. I am gone for 10-11 hours at a time. And that's too long
for most foods to cook, even on low. But the timer has ended that issue
for me and I have been using the crock pot weekly ever since I
discovered this trick.

If you really long for a removable crock and you can spare $15-20,
treat yourself to one of the newer ones. I have a tall, 6 quart round
one and a small 3.5 quart oval one. The small one cost me about $13 at
Walmart. West Bend. Works great. I'm not being sarcastic about being
able to spare the $15-20. Although I'm working, my budget is really
squeezed, and sometimes, I just can't spare that small amount of cash
for something that I "merely" want, vs. something I really need.

Anyway, go for it!!!



  #6 (permalink)   Report Post  
Gal Called J.J.
 
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Default

One time on Usenet, Sheryl Rosen > said:

<snip>

> I've often wondered if meatloaf would turn out well in a slow-cooker. I
> really only use them for braising or simmering, never really as an oven.
> But I found a recipe in a Slow-Cooker recipe magazine (one of those special
> editions put out by Woman's Day magazine) for one, and while I used my own
> meatloaf recipe, I followed their suggestion for how much meat to use and
> the timing.
>
> Know what? It was fantastic! There even was crust!!!! The best part of the
> meatloaf is the ends, right? Well, the ends were perfectly crusty!


<snip>

I confess, it never, ever occured to me to make *meatloaf* in the
crock pot. What a great idea, Sheryl, thanks for sharing! I just did
my two weeks worth of shopping today, so it will be a while before I
can try it, but I'm putting this on my menu for next time...

--
J.J. in WA ~ mom, vid gamer, novice cook ~
"You still haven't explained why the pool is
filled with elf blood." - Frylock, ATHF
  #7 (permalink)   Report Post  
 
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Sheryl,


About the timer...was the crockpot on the timer? How long did the
meatloaf
cook?


I will have to try this sometime. It's been too long since we've had
meatloaf I only wish we had the kind of crock pot with the removable
crock!


Chris


Ok, I didn't answer your question really--yes, the crock pot was
plugged into the timer. It cooked for 6 hours and 30 minutes, but it
also sat without heat for 1 hour. (that was not by design, just how it
worked out). So....7 1/2 hours total.

Hope that helps.

  #8 (permalink)   Report Post  
Ophelia
 
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> wrote in message
oups.com...
> Sheryl,
>
>
> About the timer...was the crockpot on the timer? How long did the
> meatloaf
> cook?
>
>
> I will have to try this sometime. It's been too long since we've had
> meatloaf I only wish we had the kind of crock pot with the removable
> crock!
>
>
> Chris
>
>
> Ok, I didn't answer your question really--yes, the crock pot was
> plugged into the timer. It cooked for 6 hours and 30 minutes, but it
> also sat without heat for 1 hour. (that was not by design, just how it
> worked out). So....7 1/2 hours total.
>
> Hope that helps.


For those who have a non removeable crock... mine gives recipes for putting
a loaf pan inside the crock to cook, pouring water around it

Ophelia


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