This is kind of a cross between kofte and meatloaf, with the familiar shape of meatloaf and the deep spiced flavor of kofte. This isn't a hot spice necessarily, but rich and complex. And since it's not meatloaf without ketchup on top, I made a cinnamon-y twist.
This is one of the fun things about learning a basic recipe, like meatloaf. Different spices and fillings, make it a versatile go-to. I think some sort of Vietnamese take may be my next foray. The point is that you should have fun with it and make it your own. Put the stuff in there that you like. So long as you don't put anything too wet, you'll be good.
Aren't those red peppers and herbs gorgeous in there? Such bright, fresh ingredients for a dish that is synonymous with being old-timey or drab.
What you get is a refreshing and unexpected twist on classic comfort. It's kind of a fun way to expand your horizons.
Middle Eastern Spiced Meatloaf
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 red pepper, finely chopped
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
1/2 cup milk
1lb ground beef
1lb ground turkey
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup dates, chopped
1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped
2 tablespoons mint, finely chopped
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 1/2 t cumin
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup ketchup
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Heat olive oil over medium heat and add red pepper. Saute until softened, about 5 minutes. Allow to cool. In a small bowl, combine milk and panko. Allow bread crumbs to soak up milk.
In a large bowl, combine cooled red pepper, bread crumb mixture, beef, turkey, beaten egg, dates, parsley, mint, paprika, nutmeg, cumin, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Use clean hands to combine mixture, taking care not to pack it or overmix. Turn out mixture onto a lined sheet pan and form into a 2-inch thick loaf.
In a small bowl, combine ketchup, cayenne and cinnamon. Spread in a thin layer over meatloaf.
Bake loaf for 45-60 minutes, until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees. Allow to rest for 5 minutes before slice. Serve over tabbouleh or couscous. Enjoy!