Believe it or not, this is one of my favorite sandwiches in all of New York City (next to pretty much everything available at Graham Avenue Meats and Deli in Williamsburg). When we first moved to the city, one of the places our friend Morgan, who had moved out here about a year before we did, was ‘Wichcraft, surprisingly enough. He told us to get the meatloaf sandwich and couldn’t stop singing its praises, so we figured that we had better try it. I’m telling you right now, there is no better meatloaf than this one right here. There’s nothing fancy about the meatloaf itself – it’s pretty straightforward, actually, but somehow it is the most delicious thing I’ve ever tasted. I added some spicy pork sausage to mine, but that is completely unnecessary, as this meatloaf speaks for itself. My favorite part of this sandwich, though, is the tomato relish. It’s the perfect sandwich accompaniment, and is great on not only this sandwich, but in a salad or even as a side dish. I especially love the pickled mustard seeds in the relish, because they pop in your mouth with each bite and add a texture that you won’t find anywhere else. Of course, melty cheddar cheese and crispy bacon tie this meatloaf sandwich all together and make it into the stuff of dreams.
So, to recap: I am completely obsessed with The ‘Wichcraft Cookbook; so much so, that I bought a second copy of the book to give away to one of you. To enter to win the book, just comment on any of my ‘Wichcraft posts and tell me what your favorite sandwich is, what your favorite sandwich was when you were a kid, or anything else you love about sandwiches. So far, I’ve made the Slow-Roasted Pork with Red Cabbage, Jalapenos, and Mustard and the Roasted Pork and Prosciutto Sandwich with Pickled Pepper Relish, so this is the third installment in my ‘Wichcraft series. You can also like me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter for more information on how to win!
First, prepare your meatloaf.
I didn’t have any breadcrumbs on hand, so I made my own. Using a knife or a food processor, take your bread and pulse (or mince) it until you have fine crumbs, about 3/4 cup worth.
Toast until golden, then set aside to cool to room temperature.
Saute your onions, then your garlic.
Combine the rest of your meatloaf ingredients, and using your hands, form them into a loaf.
Place it on your makeshift roasting pan (or real roasting pan).
Coat your meatloaf in the ketchup and cook at 350 degree F for an hour, or until cooked through.
When cooked, set aside until ready to use, as it will be heated back up in the oven.
Also be sure to cook your bacon and set it aside. I did mine in the oven (instructions to follow), but you can cook it in a pan, too.
Now make your pickled mustard seeds.
Bring everything but your mustard seeds to a boil.
Then add in your mustard seeds and cook until they double in size, about 5 minutes.
Drain the amount you need for the relish, then store the rest in the liquid in an airtight container in the fridge.
Now to make the tomato relish.
Caramelize your onions and garlic.
Then add in your tomatoes.
Along with the rest of the ingredients, except the parsley and pickled mustard seeds.
When your relish is ready, strain it through a sieve.
Save the sauce to use to reheat the meatloaf the next day!
Place your relish on a cutting board.
And roughly chop.
Then add in the mustard seeds and parsley.
And stir to combine. Taste, and add salt and pepper as necessary.
Now assemble your sandwiches. Place 1 slice of cheese on each slice of bread, followed by a thick slice of meatloaf, then the relish and bacon. Toast in the oven until the meatloaf is warmed through and the other slices of bread are toasted.
Cut in half and serve.
- ½ medium yellow onion, diced
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 2 pounds ground beef (I used 1.5 pounds ground beef and .5 pounds of ground sausage)
- 2 large eggs
- ¾ cup fresh bread crumbs
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano, or ½ tablespoon dried Sicilian oregano
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons ketchup
- 12 slices bacon
- 4 ciabatta rolls (I used sourdough rolls)
- 8 slices yellow Cheddar cheese
- 8 tablespoons Tomato Relish (recipe follows)
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 small yellow onion, halves and thinly sliced lengthwise
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon curry powder
- 1 teaspoon sherry vinegar (I used red wine vinegar because I didn't have sherry vinegar)
- 1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano, or 1 teaspoon dried Sicilian oregano
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ cup flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped
- 2 tablespoons drained Pickled Mustard Seeds (recipe follows)
- ½ cup water
- ½ cup white wine vinegar
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons dry mustard
- ¼ cup mustard seeds
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. If you are making your own bread crumbs, do that first. Using a sharp knife or a food processor, dice or process the bread into crumbs. Place the crumbs on a baking sheet and toast at 350 degrees F for 10-12 minutes, until browned (I put mine under the broiler, so you can do that if you are impatient, but they will toast in 2-3 minutes, so keep an eye on them!). Set aside until ready to use. In a skillet over medium heat, saute the onion in the oil until golden. Add in the garlic and saute for 1 minute or so, until fragrant. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool to room temperature.
- In a large bowl, combine the beef, eggs, onion and garlic, bread crumbs, oregano, Dijon mustard, salt, and pepper. Form a loaf (approximately 7x5x3 inches in size) and place it in a roasting pan, or place a cooling rack in a lined baking sheet and use that as your "makeshift" roasting pan. Cover the loaf evenly with the ketchup, then bake for 1 hour, or until it reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees F. Remove from the pan and allow to rest slightly, then cut into ½-inch slices. Set aside until ready to use.
- In a heavy skillet over medium high-heat, cook the bacon until golden brown and crisp on both sides. Alternatively, you can cook the bacon in the oven, like I did. Line a baking sheet with foil, then place a cooling rack on top. Spray with nonstick spray, then place the bacon on the cooling rack. Cook at 400 degrees F for 18-20 minutes, until crisp. Transfer to paper towels so that the fat can drain and set aside.
- Slice the ciabatta rolls in half. Top each bottom half with a slice of warm meatloaf, followed by the cheese. Place the tomato relish (recipe follows) on the top halves and then top with bacon. Place all the rolls on a baking sheet and into a 350 degree F oven and remove once the cheese has melted and the meatloaf is heated through. Close the sandwiches, cut into halves, and serve.
- Pour the olive oil into a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and saute over medium heat until golden brown, about 8-10 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook for a minute or two, until fragrant. Add the sugar and curry powder and cook for 5 minutes. Add in the vinegar and deglaze the pan, scraping up any browned bits.
- Add in the tomatoes, oregano, salt, and pepper to taste and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and pour the contents into a strainer. Stir the reslish so most of the liquid drains. Keep the liquid in an airtight container in the fridge to use later - it's great to spread onto the meatloaf when you re-heat it, or makes a great base for a tomato sauce or dressing. Transfer the relish to a cutitng board and roughly chop. Transfer it again to a bowl and mix in the parsley and mustard seeds. Check the seasoning and adjust if necessary. Use immediately or store refrigerated for up to 1 week. This relish is great on sandwiches, eggs, salads, pasta...you name it!
- In a sauce pan, bring 1 cup of water, vinegar, sugar, and dry mustard to a boil. Add in the mustard seeds and simmer for 5 minutes, until the seeds bloom, or double in size. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. Store the mustard seeds in the liquid, and they will keep well if refrigerated for up to 2 weeks in an airtight container. These are wonderful in salads (even tuna salad or egg salad), as well as with any kind of meat. For an example, see my Salsa Verde Brisket with Cabbage, Carrot, and Fennel Salad.