Monday, May 16, 2011

Foggy City Meatloaf

Meatloaf is one of those comfort foods, but it is not something I really crave for or order at a restaurant.  Yet, there is something very special about this particular slab of ground beef and pork. Look closely at the picture above and you will see a pink smoke ring on the edge of this slice, indicating that this meatloaf was smoked.

Smoked meatloaf may sound weird, but after one bite I was hooked.  The meat includes a combination of spices and a tomato/onion saute.  It would probably be good enough baked in the oven, but it is the smoking process that really imparts a wonderful dimension of flavor to this hearty loaf.

Preparing the meatloaf was an easy task, so the only real time involved is the smoking process. So, take some time to celebrate summer. Get outside and smoke up the backyard by preparing this unusual and tasty main course.

Foggy City Meatloaf
courtesy of Barbecue America:A Pilgrimage Cookbook 

1 dash hot pepper sauce
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp lemon pepper seasoning
1 1/2 cups Ritz or Waverly crackers
1/4 cup red wine
1 egg
3 tbs barbecue sauce (additional for brushing on meatloaf)
1 tbs minced garlic
2 tbs olive oil
1 minced, medium size onion
1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes
1/2 lb ground pork
1 1/2 lbs ground beef
non stick cooking spray

Prepare your smoker and let it preheat up to 220 degrees.

Fill a small bowl with the sun dried tomatoes and cover with hot water.  Set timer for 10 minutes for tomatoes to soften.  Once the timer goes off, drain water.  Then mince the tomatoes, either pulsing in a food processor or by hand. Set aside.

Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat.  Place minced tomatoes and onions in the saucepan and cook for 3 minutes or until all vegetables have become soft.  Remove from heat and set aside to cool for 15 minutes.

In the meantime, place all other ingredients in a bowl and mix thoroughly with your hands or a wooden spoon.  Then take out pan or rack that has holes in the bottom.  This can be a perforated pizza pan, cooling rack or screened pan designed for the grill.  I used a pan made for grilling fish.  Spray pan with non stick spray.

Take meat mixture out of bowl and place on pan, forming into a loaf shape.  Place the pan of meatloaf in the center of grill over a water pan.

Then cover and cook for about 2 1/2 hours or until meat thermometer registers 165 degrees Fahrenheit.  The cover should stay on as much as possible during this process and meat should not be moved.  Once done, open the cover and brush with barbecue sauce. Cover again and cook for an additional 10 minutes.

Remove from the grill and transfer to large heat proof serving platter.  Cover with foil and let meat rest for 10-15 minutes.  Then slice and serve with additional barbecue sauce as needed.