The Recipe For A Big Life Is Full Of Small Moments
It was February of 2007 and the weather was 60 degrees and sunny in Independence, Kansas. Here let me repeat that just in case you didn’t hear me the first time; It was February of 2007 and the weather was 60 degrees and sunny in Independence, Kansas. I bet that if you think hard enough you will know what I did that day. If you said, “Ride your motorcycle” you are only partially correct.
I cannot tell you how it felt to put the wind in my face. I cannot tell you because I do not wish to explain it. Those, like me that ride, know what it felt like, those that do not ride cannot even imagine. My bike and I got re-acquainted with the road today. My bike coughed and protested it’s awakening from its winter long sleep but I soon had the cobwebs blown out of her. Soon she purred like a content lion as we hugged each and every curve.
In Riverside Park I saw a father blowing bubbles with his son. An elderly woman walked her dog along the road. Big horn sheep frolicked upon icy slopes in the hollow along the road that passes the zoo and all was right with the world.
When I returned home I saw patches of green within the yard fighting to force back the grays and browns that have dominated for so long. I went into my home studio and started on a painting that was inspired by my friend Jana. It will be outstanding when completed because it was inspired. I had been in a creative slump for awhile and it felt good to make my brush do my bidding as it skipped and danced upon the canvas.
I also did some cooking in the kitchen, real cooking, not Hamburger Helper. It had been awhile since I had felt like exercising my culinary skills. I had debated what to fix. I had thought about Spaghetti with a nice thick meat sauce and Asparagus patties (recipe courtesy of my friend Dianna), but I opted instead for something that I had not made for along time, Meatloaf. “What, Meatloaf again, that’s the third time this week!?” For you maybe but not for me. So I rolled up my sleeves and went to work.
I wish that I could give each and everyone of you a taste because it came out fantastic but since I can’t I will do the next best thing. I will give you my recipe so that you can make it yourself and melt into its rich and many layered fountains of flavor.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit
- 1 pound of Ground Beef
- 1 can of Rotel Diced Tomatoes with Chili, Cilantro and Lime Juice
- 1 Can Tomato Soup
- 1 small yellow Onion
- 1 7.5 or 8 ounce can of Tomato sauce
- 2 tablespoons minced Garlic
- 2 large dashes of ground Basil
- 1 large egg
- 1 sleeve of Ritz Snack Crackers
- Pam butter flavor spray
- Peel and Dice the whole Onion into fine cubes.
- Crush the Ritz crackers into an almost fine powder.
- Drain the juice from the Rotel.
- Combine all the ingredients, except for the tomato sauce, into a round oven proof casserole bowl.
- Get your hands into the bowl and thoroughly mix the ingredients together.
- Make the mixture into a large loaf and remove from casserole bowl. Place on plate.
- Clean and dry the bowl and coat liberally with Pam butter flavor spray.
- Place your loaf back into the bowl and gently pat down until it covers the entire bottom of bowl. DO NOT hard pack the loaf.
- Place casserole onto center rack of oven and bake for 30 minutes.
- Remove Casserole and drain off grease.
- Pour the can of Tomato soup evenly over the entire loaf.
- Cook 15 More Minutes
- Remove from oven and allow cooling for 15 minutes before serving.
A large baked potato with real butter, sour cream, real bacon bits and shredded sharp cheddar cheese. It makes a perfect side to my Gypsy Meatloaf. I would also suggest adding Texas toast with Garlic butter to complete the meal. A nice Merlot goes well with this meal. Bring your appetite because you’ll need it.
This is a very moist meatloaf and very flavorful. You will taste it for hours afterwards and will not be able to resist the urge to sneak bites from the leftovers. You can make it dryer by cooking for an extra 15 minutes but I don’t recommend it.
I have other meatloaf recipes and if you like this one I might share the others with you someday.
It was a great day and I got to do three of the four things that I enjoy most in the world. And who knows I still might get to number four before midnight. So how was your day? I hope that it was at least half as enjoyable as mine. And if it wasn’t don’t worry because there is always tomorrow.