Turkey Meatloaf & Whipped Potatoes

I know what you’re thinking. Meatloaf? Really Paige? What is it, 1953? No, no it isn’t. But this isn’t your mother’s meatloaf. Or your grandmother’s. Or the one in Wedding Crashers. (Ma!) This stuff is delicious–packed with flavor thanks to savory sauteed onions and a sweet topping of ketchup. (It wouldn’t be meatloaf without it.) Not only did I make and eat meatloaf, but I served it at a dinner party of eight. That’s how much I trusted its crowd-pleasing abilities.

If you had asked me just a few months ago whether I had any interest in cooking or consuming meatloaf I would have said absolutely not. For starters, there’s the name. Must it be so descriptive? But my sister made it over the holiday, and from my first bite I was hooked. So totally comforting, and yet surprisingly light (credit the turkey meat) and tasty.

Yet the loaf (sorry) wasn’t the only star of this meal. I discovered a brand-new way of making mashed potatoes and I’m never going back to any other method. The secret is using the KitchenAid mixer. I stumbled upon a recipe in Cook’s Country just last week that suggested using the mixer and this meal was the perfect opportunity to give it a whirl. So here’s the gist of how you make these light-as-air whipped potatoes. (Full recipe is below.) Basically, you peel, boil, and drain the potatoes per usual. While they’re boiling you melt butter in milk in a saucepan on the stove. The potatoes go into the mixer with the whisk attachment. You start on low speed until they look like regular mashed potatoes. Then you slowly stream in the milk-butter mixture. Once that’s combined you blast the mixer to high and let the thing go to town, whipping its little heart out, for two to three minutes. The result: Perfectly fluffy taters with minimal effort. I served the loaf and potatoes alongside my current favorite green, sauteed haricots verts with shallots. (I doubled the original recipe.)

All puns aside, this meatloaf is an ideal dinner-party staple since most of the prep work can be done ahead of time and requires no effort or attention once it goes into the oven. And if nothing else, it definitely gives people something to talk about.

Turkey Meatloaf
Serves 8-10

2 large yellow onions, chopped
Olive oil
salt & pepper
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce
3/4 cup chicken stock or broth
1 1/2 tsp tomato paste
5 pounds ground turkey (I asked the butcher to do 3/4 of it breast and the rest dark meat for added flavor, but for the lightest version you can do all white meat.)
1 1/2 cups plain bread crumbs
3 eggs, beaten

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a saute pan over medium heat, cook the onions, olive oil, salt, pepper, and thyme until the onion becomes translucent, but not brown–about 15 minutes. Add Worcestershire sauce, chicken stock, and tomato sauce. Mix until combined. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.

Using your hands, combine turkey, bread crumbs, eggs, and onion mixture in a large bowl. Mix well. Shape into two perpendicular rectangular loaves on a foil-lined baking sheet. Liberally top both loaves with ketchup and spread evenly. Bake for 1.5 hours or until the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees.

Source: Barefoot Contessa

Whipped (Mashed) Potatoes
Serves 8-10

4 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
1 1/2 cups whole milk
8 Tbsp (1 stick) butter
salt & pepper

Place potatoes into a large pot and cover with several inches of water. Bring to a boil on the stove. Boil until potatoes are tender, about 15-20 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat butter and milk on medium-low heat on the stove until butter is melted. Whisk to combine. Keep warm until ready to use.

Once potatoes are cooked, drain in a colander. Return potatoes to pot and mix with a wooden spoon until potatoes are dried. Add potatoes to bowl of a stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment. Begin on low speed until potatoes are mashed, about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Slowly add the milk and butter mixture until combined. Increase speed to high and whip until potatoes are light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Whip just a few seconds until incorporated throughout.

Source: Cook’s Country 

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