Old Fashioned Meatloaf

Summer Wiggs

When I think about this recipe, all I can imagine is coming to my grandmother’s house on Sundays and smelling the aroma of a feast in the air.  It’s what I looked forward to every Sunday when I was a little girl.  I remember sitting in church and asking Mom, “What’s Mamaw cooking for lunch?”  Meatloaf didn’t sound appetizing.  I knew it as the “mystery meat” they served us in school, and I swore I would never eat it.  But come to find out, after my grandmother passed away, Mom told me that Mamaw would put the meatloaf on a hamburger bun and tell me it was a burger.  And it was the best “burger” I had ever had.  From the spices to the juiciness, I knew it was more than just a hamburger.  The recipe was passed from my great-grandmother down to my mother, and it’s still my favorite dish to this day.

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
¼ cup ketchup
½ cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 ½ teaspoons salt
1/1/2 pounds lean ground beef
1 large egg, beaten
¾ cup oatmeal
3 tablespoons water or milk

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add chopped onion and celery and cook until tender, about 7 to 9 minutes.

In a large bowl, mix ground beef, oatmeal, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, salt, egg, celery and onion mixture, and the water or milk.  In a 13 x 9-inch baking pan, shape meat mixture into a 9 x 5-inch loaf.  Bake at 375° for 1 hour.  Using a spatula, carefully move meatloaf to a serving plate and slice.  Serves 6 to 8.