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This recipe is an ode to the brilliant, resilient and delicious Smollett family. (Check out their cookbook – it's off the hook!) They (Mom Janet and kids Jojo, Jocqui, Jake, Jussie, Jazz and Jurnee) thought that everyone made their meatloaf this way (no breadcrumbs, cover the loaf with mashed potatoes instead) because their brilliant mom did. We ALL just got schooled! Thank you, Smollett family!
P.S. I Googled this and even my staff at Rachael Ray Every Day did this in 2013! What? Okay, here’s my first try…
And here's a suggestion for a side dish:
Serve with 2 bundles of roasted broccolini dressed with olive oil, seasoned with salt, pepper and granulated garlic. Roast along with meatloaf on a separate rack until tender and crisp at tops, include a halved lemon. Top the broccolini with juice of roasted lemon.
For the potatoes, preheat oven to 375˚F. Roast bacon on slotted pan or wire rack-lined baking sheet until very crisp and well browned, cool to handle and crumble or finely chop into bacon bits. Turn oven temperature to 400˚F.
For the meatloaf, heat olive oil, 2 turns of the pan, in a sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and brown, then add shallots or onion, celery, carrot and garlic and season with salt, pepper and thyme. Cook to soften 5-6 minutes, stir in tomato paste 1 minute, then add wine or sherry or stock and let it absorb. Remove from heat and cool.