I have tried every conceivable meatloaf recipe on the planet. Well, close anyway. I still really don't have a favorite version. That I am even able to eat meatloaf any more is a miracle. When I was growing up and my dad was still alive we ate meat loaf every blessed week (he always got the two end pieces). This was in no way due to my mother's short comings in the kitchen---she's a wonderful cook and appreciates a gourmet meal with the best of us. My father was just very limited when it came to what he would eat. No steak (except filet mignon, medium-well :( ), no lamb, no chicken that still looked like a part of the chicken, no fish. Canned Corned Beef Hash and SPAM were okay though!
This is in large measure due to my Irish grandmother who could suck the flavor out of anything...don't even get me started on the shoe leather pot roast, no gravy, with frozen mixed vegetables with those nasty lima beans in them and jarred pickled red cabbage. Thank God for the red cabbage! It was the only moisture on the plate that enabled you to swallow said shoe leather. I obviously have a lot of emotional baggage when it comes to meatloaf, huh? That said and out of my system (blogging can be so cathartic, can't it?), I still on occasion want meatloaf and mac n cheese (See seperate post).
This tomato jam makes ho-hum into something special. My mom and I having been making this for years and is our answer to the above tirade...we just love it. It's not just for your meatloaf dinner either. It's also for the leftover sandwiches the next day which I quite frequently prefer. The next time you're faced with making meatloaf again give this a try. It might even get you to want to make it again. Enjoy!
Recipe: Martha's Tomato Jam
From Martha Stewart Living
Makes 1-1/2 cups
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 small cloves garlic, minced
1 piece ginger, peeled and minced (1 tablespoon)
1 small red onion, peeled and finely diced
1 can (28 ounces) plum tomatoes
1/2 cup red-wine vinegar
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
Pinch of ground cloves
2 cinnamon sticks
2 star anise
1.In a medium saucepot set over medium heat, heat olive oil, add garlic, ginger, and red onion, and saute until translucent. Add tomatoes, breaking them up with a wooden spoon. Add vinegar, honey, brown sugar, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, and star anise.
2.Simmer, stirring occasionally, until tomatoes have dissolved and liquid has evaporated, 60 to 75 minutes. Discard cinnamon sticks and star anise before serving. This jam may be stored in an airtight container in the refigerator for up to 2 weeks.