Meatloaf is one of those things when done well is absolutely fantastic, but when just mediocre or even worse, a disaster, is really, really bad. Meatloaf got a bad rap in the 80s. As a kid my impression of meatloaf was built on an array of negative portrayals: kids in shows refused to eat it, mother's smothered it in ketchup (for some reason I find baked on ketchup to be disgusting), cafeteria's served it up dry and rubbery. Meatloaf was just bad, bad, bad.
But, as an adult, I've rediscovered meatloaf and it is pretty darn tasty. Its really a giant delicious meatball that can be eaten with mashed potatoes. I don't know about you, but that just sounds delicious. So I started experimenting with meatloaf recipes that skip the ketchup. I chose to use barbecue sauce in place of ketchup, but I don't just use any old barbecue sauce. I use Salt Lick barbecue sauce. It turns out that Salt Lick sauce loves meatloaf.
For those of you unfamiliar with the Salt Lick its a barbecue institution in the Austin area. They serve up smoked meats served along side their wonderfully tangy vinegar and mustard based sauce. It is wonderful smothered on ribs, barbecue, or with this meatloaf recipe.
1 lb ground pork
1 lb ground beef (91%)
1/4 cup cream
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tbsp Salt Lick barbecue sauce
1 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 egg, beaten
2/3 cup bread crumbs
Preheat the oven to 375.
Place the pork and beef in a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, combine everything but the bread crumbs.The add the liquid spice mixture and bread crumbs and using your hands combine with the meat until everything just comes together. Be very careful not to over mix.
Then form the meat mixture into a free form loaf on a sheet pan, and bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes or until the meatloaf is cooked through and a crust has formed on top. The cooking time will depend on the thickness of your loaf.