GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

Lifestyle

March 6, 2013

Try a new meatloaf sauce

Meatloaf is the king of comfort food.

And it’s also one of those dishes that yield sought-after leftovers. When I mention meatloaf to a friend, she relishes the thought of a leftover meatloaf sandwich.

Today’s recipe came about, in part, because I found mini ceramic loaf pans at a local HomeGoods store. They are the perfect size for making individual, but generous meatloaves. They are also ideal if you’re trying to pay attention to portion control.

And, I had ground sirloin and hot Italian sausage tucked away in the freezer and wanted to re-create a meatloaf I sampled some time ago at the Kona Grill in Troy, Mich.

I remembered that the recipe had a mix of beef and Italian sausage — a good combination for producing a juicy, tender meatloaf. After searching the Internet, I came up with today’s recipe: Mini Meatloaves with Shoyu Cream Sauce.

The meatloaf recipe is fairly basic; what sets it apart is the Shoyu (SHOH-yoo) Cream Sauce. It’s a simple mixture of heavy whipping cream and soy sauce, brought to a boil and thickened with slurry — a mixture of cornstarch and water. You can substitute regular or reduced-fat whipping cream or fat-free half-and-half.

Shoyu is Japanese sweet soy sauce. At many grocery stores you will find several varieties of soy sauce. Not all soy sauces have the same flavor profile. Some are sweeter; some are darker, and some are slightly thicker. It is a salty condiment, and some brands can be saltier than others. For this recipe, I used Kikkoman reduced-sodium soy sauce.

One technique I learned some time ago when making meatloaf is to saute any vegetables first, so they get nicely caramelized and take on a sweet flavor. If you put the vegetables in raw, they will steam. Also, let the meatloaf rest before slicing. If you slice it right away, it may crumble and likely will be dry.

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