Thanks go to Epicurious.com and Armandino Batali (Mario's Dad) for this beauty, although I'll admit to using cook's license and making a few adjustments. So sue me.
If you're looking for something different to make in the meatloaf department, this one's a real keeper. I used spicy Italian sausage rather than sweet, and once again divided the recipe in half so we're not eating it indefinitely, but otherwise I almost followed the recipe as is. It's loaded with garlic, fresh basil, chopped onion and sun dried tomatoes ...if it sounds like too much fuss for you, just throw it all in the mini chopper attachment for your immersion blender like I did and the job's done in no time. Oh, rather than shredding the mozzarella, I cut it into chunks and stuffed it in the center of the loaf before rolling it up like a jelly roll.
The end result is a moist basil filled celebration of all that's fabulous about Italian flavors. Delicious with smashed potatoes and a large green salad, just wait until you see what we're doing with the leftovers.
Mozzarella Stuffed Beef and Sausage Meatloaf (from JBug’s Kitchen adapted from Epicurious.com)
1.25 pounds lean ground beef
1 pound sweet or spicy Italian sausage (I used spicy)
1 cup chopped fresh basil
1 cup fresh breadcrumbs
1/2 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup chopped oil packed sun dried tomatoes
1-1/2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
1/2 cup tomato sauce
2 large eggs, beaten
1/2 pound fresh mozzarella cut into half inch sticks
Preheat oven to 375. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except the mozzarella until well mixed. Pat out onto a sheet of foil or parchment paper as you would if you were making a jelly roll. Lay a layer of mozzarella down the center of the loaf and using the foil, fold the meat up over to meet in the center, covering the cheese. Press loaf together to seal the seam and turn over so seem is down. Transfer loaf using the foil to a sheet pan. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until loaf is cooked through. Allow to rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
A year ago - Creamy Onion Horseradish Sauce
Two year's ago - Crispy Orange Beef
Three year's ago - Tamale Pie