Someone may claim that a certain recipe creates the most heavenly whatever-it-is ever tasted by man. It probably does. The problem with a lot of those recipes, is they usually require special equipment, special knowledge, lots of time, or expensive ingredients. Case in point: we had glazed meat loaf for dinner Wednesday night, when Sarah came to have supper with us.
Now, Dad has been the meat loaf chef all these years. He makes a few things well, and meat loaf is one of them. He loves meat loaf; I could always take it or leave it (and that is precisely how he got to be the meat loaf chef). So, back to Wednesday night. The perfect meat loaf was featured in the latest issue of Cook’s Illustrated, one of my favorite magazines, and so I thought I would try it out and hopefully make a meat loaf Dad could drool over. Actually, Dad discovered what I was planning and, getting interested in the ins and outs of perfect meat loaf cooking, took over preparing the dinner for me. I did not complain (thank you, honey!).
But back to the point, which was adjusting recipes. The glazed meat loaf recipe I posted is not the original from the Cook’s Illustrated magazine. I adjusted it in several places, so what we ate might not have been the absolute perfect meat loaf after all. But it was really good, the best meat loaf we have ever made, actually.
Which brings me to my point (finally!). The original recipe called for 1 pound each of ground chuck and ground sirloin, which they strongly encourage everyone to use, being the combo preferred by the overwhelming majority of the taste testers. I can imagine that meat loaf made from ground sirloin is wonderful. But, really, who has ground sirloin in their freezer? Who buys ground sirloin? We are trying to feed our families the best food we can make, but on a budget. Perfection is not the goal of most wives or moms. The best that can be made out of common and affordable ingredients is the goal.