Wednesday, October 24, 2012

recipe: Italian Inspired Meatloaf

If you’re a regular reader of this column (or my monthly newsletter) then you’ll definitely recognize the name “Tina Roberts”.  Tina is a friend, fellow foodie and cookbook author.  I’ve featured many of her recipes over the years.  Tina’s “Two Sisters” cookbook, published in 2011, is a Canadian best seller. 

November 14th is World Diabetes Day and five percent of the net profits from Tina’s cookbook go to support JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation).  Tina’s nephew, Jonny, has type 1 diabetes (juvenile) and was diagnosed on his 11th birthday.  He was also one of the cookbook testers - Jonny loves to cook and invent recipes - just like Tina.

 One of his favourite recipes is the "Italian-inspired Meatloaf", featured on page 49 of his aunt’s cookbook.

 Three million Canadians have diabetes - with only ten percent having type 1 (juvenile) diabetes - they can't adjust diet or exercise to manage their diabetes - they have absolutely no insulin production in their body – so they must monitor their blood sugar and make insulin injections.

 Most recently, Jonny received an insulin pump from Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto and he has an electronic device which makes it easier to measure blood sugar levels, calculate carb ratios and the amount of insulin needed.  Before that, he needed upwards of fourteen needles, every single day.

Tina says “I hope with cookbook sales, more awareness is raised about type 1 diabetes, and with my donations to JDRF we can find a cure!”

The “Two Sisters” cookbook can be found at my shop (Dana Shortt Gourmet), Relish Cooking Studio, Vincenzo’s, The University of Waterloo bookstore, Aesthetica Face + Body and the Framing + Art Centre.  For more information and free recipes, please visit Tina’s website at:

Tina’s Italian Inspired Meatloaf

This meatloaf can be served warm or at room temperature.  Thickly sliced, it also makes an incredible meatloaf sandwich – crusty bun, mayonnaise, sliced tomato, and some caramelized onions.


·         2 (two) lbs. medium or lean ground beef

·         ½ (one-half) lb. ground pork

·         1 (one) medium Spanish onion, minced

·         3 (three) cloves garlic, minced

·         ½ (one-half) cup minced Italian parsley

·         2½ (two-and-a-half) cups fresh breadcrumbs

·         2 (two) large eggs

·         1 (one) cup tomato juice

·         1 (one) tbsp. Dijon mustard

·         1 (one) tsp. kosher salt

·         1 (one) tsp. freshly ground black pepper

·         1 (one) tsp. red hot cayenne pepper sauce

·         ½ (one-half) tsp. Worcestershire sauce

·         8 (eight) oz. sliced smoked mozzarella, mild Provolone, or fontina cheese


1.       Gently mix ground meats, onions, garlic, parsley, and breadcrumbs in a large bowl until just combined.  Add eggs, juice, mustard, salt, pepper, pepper sauce, and Worcestershire sauce and combine until just combined.

2.       Preheat oven to 350˚F.  Line a baking sheet with foil.

3.       Place a 13 x 18-inch sheet of parchment paper on your counter.  Shape meat on paper into a 10 x 15-inch square rectangle.  Arrange cheese in an even layer over meat mixture.

4.       Start at the long end of the rectangle, roll up meat like a jellyroll, and pat ends gently to form a loaf.  Using paper as a guide, transfer paper and meatloaf onto baking sheet.  Bake meatloaf for 60 to 80 minutes or until juices run clear.

5.       Tip: You can also omit the cheese and bake the meat mixture in a large loaf pan.

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