Seriously, guys, tell me… have you ever seen a meatloaf that looked so pretty?
I honestly don’t think I have! On the account of its looks alone, I simply could never pass on a slice of this beauty.
Something a parent could very well take great advantage of, if they were trying to say… get their kids to eat something that they normally wouldn’t?
Because believe it or not, this meatloaf has way more to offer than just good looks: it’s actually a very yummy looking and tasting nutrient powerhouse, filled with the typical bold, spicy and explosive flavors of Tex-Mex cuisine.
Its center hides all the obvious, the stuff that the eyes can easily see and taste buds can shamelessly enjoy, such as creamy avocado, salty olives, tangy onions, sweet tomatoes as well at the obligatory hot and spicy jalapeño peppers. But this beauty also conceals a great big secret: within that dense, chunky and beefy meat mixture lies hidden a healthy dose of… beef liver.
Honestly though, unless you actually know it’s in there, there’s no way you could ever tell. You can absolutely not feel nor taste it. Absolutely, positively not.
HA! Talk about a great way to sneak this superfood onto your kids, partner or even yourself!
About that beef liver: I strongly recommend that you marinate it in lemon juice or balsamic vinegar overnight. It really changes its texture, making it much “creamier” and also tones its slightly metallic flavor down a notch.
You then want to rinse it off under cold running water and process it to a smooth puree in a small food processor.
It almost looks good just like that, doesn’t it? Sure looks like a nice base for a mousse… oooooooh, now that is giving me ideas!
But I’ll save that for another post. For now, let’s focus on this Loaded Tex-Mex Meatloaf.
Add all the ingredients listed under meatloaf, including the pureed liver, to the bowl of your stand mixer equipped with the paddle attachment
Mix on medium speed until well combined and fairly sticky, about 2 minutes. You could also knead this by hand but the texture of the meatloaf won’t be quite as fine.
Transfer about one quarter of the meat mixture to a well greased loaf pan and spread it evenly across the bottom. It might help to work with slightly wet hands, as the mixture will tend to stick to your fingers.
Top this meat layer with the chopped tomato and sliced jalapeños.
Cover this with another quarter of the meat, making sure to push the meat down with your fingers along the sides so that the layers of meat come in contact and create a good seal.
Time to add the avocado slices.
Before we continue, I’ve a great tip for ya: to easily peel and slice the avocado, slice it while the peel is still attached to it and then remove the peel from each individual slice. Trust me, it’ll make your life much easier!
Now lay the slices of avocado over that second layer of meat and then cover with another layer of meat. Again, make sure to create a good seal along the sides.
I know, you’re probably thinking that your loaf pan is full enough as it is and that there’s no way you’ll ever be able to fit all of the remaining ingredients in there. Trust me, they’ll fit. Meat doesn’t really expand as it cooks, so you can mound that meat really high!
Go ahead and add the diced onions and sliced olives over that last layer of meat and cover with the rest of the meat, shaping the top into a nice dome.
Garnish the top with alternating slices of red and green jalapeño peppers, cover loosely with aluminum foil and bake in the oven for 75 minutes.
After 75 minutes, remove the foil and continue cooking for an additional 10 to 15 minutes, then remove the loaf from the oven and allow it to cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.
Now is that beautiful or what? And just you wait until you taste it. This meatloaf is a veritable explosion of flavor, a true Mexican Fiesta for the mouth, complete with mariachis, maracas, piñatas and all.
The whole 9 yards, I tell ya!
- ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
- 200g [7oz] beef liver
- 900g [2lb] lean ground beef
- ½ cup almond flour
- ¼ cup raw cacao powder
- 2 large eggs
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon smoked chipotle powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon Himalayan salt
- the zest and juice of 1 lime
- 1 tomato, seeded and diced
- 3 jalapeño peppers, sliced
- 1 ripe avocado, peeled and sliced
- ½ cup sliced black olives
- ½ small white onion, finely chopped
- Red and green jalapeño pepper slices to garnish
- The night before, place your beef liver to marinate in the lemon juice in a non-reactive container with fitting lid or re-sealable plastic bag.
- Preheat your oven to 350F and grease a loaf pan with lard, ghee or coconut oil.
- Rinse your beef liver under cold running water and process it to a smooth puree in a small food processor.
- Add all the ingredients listed under meatloaf, including the pureed liver, to the bowl of your stand mixer equipped with the paddle attachment and mix on medium speed until well combined and fairly sticky, about 2 minutes.
- You could also knead this by hand but the texture of the meatloaf won't be quite as fine.
- Transfer ¼ of the meat mixture to the loaf pan and spread it well across the bottom. It might help to work with slightly wet hands, as the mixture will tend to stick to your fingers.
- Top this meat layer with the chopped tomato and sliced jalapeños.
- Cover this with another ¼ of the meat, making sure that the layers of meat come in contact and create a good seal along the sides.
- Lay the sliced avocado over that second layer of meat and then cover with another layer of meat. Again, create a good seal along the sides.
- Add the diced onions and sliced olives over that layer and cover with the rest of the meat, creating a nice dome shape.
- Garnish the top with slices of red and green jalapeño peppers, cover loosely with aluminum foil and bake in the oven for 75 minutes.
- Remove the foil and continue cooking for an additional 10-15 minutes, then remove from the oven and allow to cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.