One of the earliest cookware that I have purchased when we first came to the USA was a slow cooker. I’ve had mine for about 7 years now and it has truly been my best friend in the kitchen. I rely on it when we have guests. I like that you can just place your favorite ingredients there and then leave them to cook for 6-8 hours and you come back with the yummiest dish (as you smell the aromatic flavors waft through your house) and you didn’t even fuss. I can cook hours ahead of time which leaves me more time to do other things (like clean the house perhaps before the guests arrive!). And of course, it’s indispensable in summertime ’cause I can cook desserts in it without having to turn on the oven. What a big help.
I have quite a few recipes that I cook in the slow cooker over and over again. One of them is the Meatloaf – a classic American comfort food. If you don’t do it right, meatloaf can be dry and bland. But since this one is cooked in the slow cooker, it has never happened to us. It always comes out moist and flavorful, too. For this, I am indebted to Taste of Home’s – Melt-in-Your-Mouth-Meat-Loaf recipe. I adapted it to suit my small family and, at that time, used the ingredients available in my pantry. Since it all worked out well (sometimes we finish the whole loaf in one sitting, courtesy of William!) I decided to just stick to my simple adaptation.
Also, since we have been dabbling on a more gluten-free diet, I have replaced the breadcrumbs with ground almonds, but if you’re not into this, feel free to just use bread crumbs. Honestly, I can’t say which is better because they are both good. I don’t even miss the breadcrumbs when I use the ground almonds but I leave that decision to you! Enjoy!
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1/2 cup milk
1/3 cup ground almonds (I use Trader Joe’s)*
1 small onion, chopped
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp rubbed sage (the most important!)
1 pound ground beef
1/4 cup ketchup
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp yellow mustard
1 tsp Gluten-free soy sauce
*Use seasoned bread crumbs instead if not doing the gluten-free version
In a large bowl, combine the first six ingredients. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well (mixture will be moist). Shape into a round loaf.
Place in the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours or until no pink remains and a meat thermometer reads 160°F.
In a small bowl, whisk the ketchup, brown sugar, mustard and soy sauce. Spoon over the meat loaf. Cook for another 15 minutes or until heated through. Let stand for 10-15 minutes before slicing.
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