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6, with leftovers
3 Tbsp olive oil
3 cups of grated peeled carrot
1 1/2 cups of grated yellow onion
1/2 tsp salt or 2 tsp shio koji (shio koji will add sweetness and savoriness)
2 Tbsp unflavored gelatin
2 large eggs
2 pounds ground beef (I like to use a pound each of chuck and sirloin)
1 1/2 - 2 cups of panko breadcrumbs
Worcestershire sauce or Tonkatsu sauce
6 cups cabbage, very thinly sliced
2 cups carrot, very thinly sliced
In a large skillet over medium-high heat add the olive oil, grated carrot and onion, Riviera Herbs, and salt or shio koji. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are lightly browned and just starting to dry out, about 10-12 minutes. Remove to a large metal bowl to cool.
Whip the gelatin and eggs together with a fresh grating of nutmeg (you can use a whisk or a blender or do it by hand).
When the cooked vegetables are no longer hot to the touch, add the gelatin and egg mixture and stir well. Add about 2 tablespoons of Worcestershire and/or tonkatsu sauce. Add the ground beef and 1.5 cups of panko and mix well with a spoon, clean hands, or in a mixer with a dough hook. If the mixture seems too wet or sticky, add the remaining panko (it will depend on how much you cook the vegetables and on the moisture content of the meat).
Test seasoning by shaping a small flat patty and frying it in a pan until cooked. Adjust the batch to your tastes with additional sauce, spice, sweetener, salt, etc.
Mix the slaw and allow to rest in the refrigerator. Adjust seasoning to taste and add some lemon juice if you like it more tart.
Form the meatloaf mix into ovals the size of a small egg (approximately 2 ounces each) and cook in batches in a lightly oiled pan with a lid. Cook covered for 9-10 minutes over medium heat. Then uncover, raise the heat a bit, and cook for 2-3 minutes more to crisp the bottom.*
Extra crispy version: make the meatloaves half-size, then roll in a light coating of flour and deep fry them.
Serve with tonkatsu sauce and slaw.
*They can also be baked on a sheet tray if you'd like to cook them all at once. In this case rub them with tonkatsu sauce or ketchup, place on a parchment lined or greased baking sheet and bake at 375°F until done (about 20 minutes).
• I like making these in patties like a small burger as well. In this case cook for about 4 minutes per side, covered, then 2 minutes per side uncovered.
• For a great sandwich using leftovers: slice a soft roll, toast it lightly, then fill with a few cold cooked meatloaves (cut them in half and they will fit together better), top with slaw and tonkatsu sauce.
• Gluten free? Try substituting the panko with instant mashed potatoes. We've done this a few times and it works great. Start with about 2/3 of a cup wetted with 1/2 cup warm water or stock, as they absorb much more moisture than breadcrumbs do.
• Play with the spices for an easy way to explore other flavors. Omit the spices, Worcestershire, and tonkatsu in the recipe above, and substitute as follows:
Food images and recipe © Christian Leue
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