A special thanks to Chef BigFatPanda for sharing his recent kitchen adventures with us! Follow along as he (and Chef Mickey!) take us right into the kitchen with them as they create Mom’s Meatloaf (whose name has oddly been changed to Dad’s Meatloaf recently) from 50’s Prime Time Cafe Restaurant in Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Take it away, Chef!
Hello! Chef BigFatPanda here, embarking on duplicating Mom’s Meat Loaf as served in 50’s Prime Time Cafe. I chose this recipe because I love meatloaf — when it’s done right — and because it’s a cost effective meal for the family. This recipe calls for a hearty 3 pounds of meat. That’s a lot of meatloaf, but unused portions can be refrigerated or frozen for another day, or for a sandwich lunch. This recipe has us making 2 loaves, so, theoretically, you can halve the ingredients and make one.
My Italian heritage takes over when I make meatloaf, and it becomes a giant meatball with Pecorino Romano cheese, etc. I am resisting that urge and am going to follow Disney’s recipe to the “T,” then give you my honest feelings on it. I feel like Julie & Julia 🙂
To make this easier to follow, I have bolded all the official instructions. This is especially useful if you want to save this recipe for future use and skip my ramblings. I will be hurt, but I’ll recover 😉
INGREDIENTS AND INSTRUCTIONS
This is straight from a Disney Cookbook — let’s begin with what ingredients we need:
2 Pounds of Ground Beef
1 Pound of Ground Pork
4 Large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
½ cup finely chopped onion
¼ cup finely chopped green bell pepper
¼ cup finely chopped red bell pepper
2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
(another) ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce (to be used separately)
½ teaspoon of coarsely ground black peppercorn
½ teaspoon coarse salt
½ cup Ketchup
1 Tablespoon Brown Sugar
1 Teaspoon Dijon Mustard
First of all, don’t let any of the ingredients scare you; for example, you can certainly substitute regular salt for coarse salt if you need to. There will be a slight variation in flavor, but nothing earth shattering. I say this because some people (me included) can look at an ingredient list and abandon trying the recipe because some of the ingredients are just funky or not too common. I personally try to be authentic to the recipe whenever possible, but improvise when necessary.
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F – Lightly oil or spray 2 loaf pans (even lasagna type trays)
2. In a large bowl, combine the beef, pork, eggs, bread crumbs, onion, green pepper, red pepper, 2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce, cracked peppercorn, and salt until well mixed.
Pork tends to contain more fat than beef. I would bet a reason they ask for pork is to make sure the meatloaf remains moist. That being said, you could certainly omit the pork and go with all beef. It would be healthier to use a Sirloin-type beef as I did, but the higher the fat content (e.g.: Chuck), the moister the meatloaf will be.
Okay, so we are going to get our hands dirty! Don’t be shy! Dump those ingredients in and start churning. Smoosh it! Yes, I said SMOOSH it! Churn it upside down, left, right –- get your groove on, and make sure everything has touched everything.
Now that I am looking at my mixture, I probably could have chopped my peppers more finely, but there’s no going back now. I use a handy little inexpensive food chopper for the onions. It gets them finely chopped in no time. It is not, however, good for chopping peppers. You wind up with skins and juice only. So, you’re going to have to cut the peppers as finely as you can on your own. It’s Fun!
3. Divide the meat mixture in half, shape into 2 loaves. Place them into your pan or tray. Bake for 50-60 minutes. Temperature should reach 155 degrees. If you’re unsure, leave them for 60 minutes.
There is a sense of accomplishment when those halves go into the oven. They are transforming from ugly to delicious. It just happens! 🙂
We are not done yet. This next step sounded gross to me until I tasted it!
4. In a small bowl, stir together the ketchup, brown sugar, mustard and 1 Tsp of Worcestershire sauce. After your meatloaf cooks it’s initial 50-60 minutes, brush the tops of them with this sauce and bake an additional 10 minutes.
I know –- I thought we were done too, but we are going back into the oven. So, listen: This ketchup mustard worcestesherry thing is really not bad. I promised to follow this recipe to the “T,” but I kinda “slipped” with the Worcestershire sauce and it tastes much better than I anticipated.
I am tasting it now! Wow! I have to tell you: I am surprised. I really like it. I like the peppers in there. I was worried that there wouldn’t be enough flavor without an onion soup mix packet, but I was mistaken. I might add a bit more salt (even though I am not a heavy salt user). I am pleasantly surprised by how much I am enjoying this meatloaf!
What would I change if I made it again? I love cooking, learning, and then making my own variations. With this recipe, I really wouldn’t change too much. If I did it again, I would add more onion than they ask for, and triple the amount of Worcestershire sauce.
Thank you so much for allowing me into your kitchen! And keep wishing upon those stars! I’d love to get your opinions and comments about this recipe. Did you order it at 50’s Prime Time Cafe? Would you try it at home? And if you have, did you like it? Let us know in the comments below.
Again, thanks to Chef BigFatPanda for this awesome trip into the kitchen! You can also find him at DisneyBoy.com Hopefully he’ll join us again with some more fantastic Disney recipes! For more information about 50’s Prime Time Cafe Restaurant, including well-known dishes and links to menus and online reservations, click here: 50’s Prime Time Cafe.