Hmmm... another food blog event. So, the funny thing about this one for me was in the timing. I have never liked meatballs or meatloaf. Meatballs because I didn't much like the texture or think they had enough flavor. Meatloaf - same problem - amplified. Then, funny enough, just after Cole was born back in October, I started craving - gasp - of all things, meatloaf! What!? I am thinking that after basically starving for all seven months of the pregnancy (yes, only seven months... 33 weeks to be exact - Cole was seven weeks premature) from being so sick all the time that I was just hungry for anything! Still, meatloaf?
Anyway, after fighting the urge for about a week, I decided to just wing it and make some meatloaf for the first time in my life. Honestly, and how un-american is this, I can't remember ever having meatloaf at our house growing up. I don't feel like I missed out, because it would probably have been like all the other meatloafs I remember eating since then made by others.
There are a few key things about this meatloaf that are different than any traditional meatloaf I've ever had though. My first issue, taste, I solved by amping up the flavors I like, and second, texture - as in too much loaf, not enough of the sweet crusty glaze on the outside - I solved by making the loaf, well, not a loaf. I decided to make "mini-loaves" or really, just big meatballs with lots of sweet, sticky glaze on the outside.
So, there you have it. I designed this recipe to satisfy me, and in the process, found something that my husband really loves - and even bragged to his mother about. Well, then. I guess I got something right.
Anyway, I have now made this at least once a week for the past month or so. When I saw the foodie event for "Meatballs for Seth" on Is My Blog Burning and hosted by Serge the Concierge I couldn't resist putting this one out there. So, whether you think of it as meatballs or meatloaf, I hope you enjoy it as much as we have been. I like mine with a heaping pile of sour cream mashed potatoes and ginger glazed carrots. Yum!
For the Meatballs:
Preheat oven to 400 degress F.
Put the onion soup mix into a microwave-safe bowl with the 1/4 cup water, stir and microwave 1 minute. Stir again, then strain to remove the onion pieces (if you like the onion piece texture, then skip the strainer step). Place all the meatball ingredients into a large bowl and mix together until a uniform color and texture throughout. Form into meatballs, approximately fist size or about 1/2 cup each (they shrink).
Line a large baking pan with aluminum foil and a cooling rack, sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Place the meatballs on the rack and place in the oven. Bake the meatballs for 10 minutes while you prepare the glaze. (Remaining instructions continued below).
For the Molasses Glaze:
Place all ingredients into a small saucepan, heat until bubbling, then continue to simmer.
Brush a generous amount onto each meatball after the first 10 minutes of baking. Place the meatballs back into the oven to bake for 10 minutes more. Remove from oven and turn the meatballs over with spatuala and glaze the other side with another generous amount of sauce.
Place the meatballs back into the oven for 10 more minutes to finish baking. Continue to simmer the remaining sauce, adding a little water, to serve along with the meatballs on the side, if desired.