My decision to start blogging was mostly due to my kids pushing me into it, and when I say pushing I mean they had a bulldozer to my back and weren't taking no for an answer. They seemed to both agree that I was going to be absolutely fabulous and this would be a huge hit. I, on the other hand, did not share their certainty. I was shocked when I began getting hits on the blog. I kind of figured it would be family and friends and I would get the obligatory "Oh yes, it is a great blog honey we really enjoy it" or, in the case of my older relatives, "What the heck is a blog?". But then again I have never been a big risk taker. I have a huge fear of failure that will leave me not just running, but breaking the sound barrier to go the other way. I have been terrified to make mistakes and look like I don't know what I am doing. Then it struck me, of course I don't know what I am doing, I have never done this before! But with the encouragement of my family and friends I am learning that I don't have to be perfect, I just need to be me. My daughter even bought a shirt that says "My Mom's kind of a big deal on the internet"! Now I wouldn't go that far, but bless her heart for loving and believing in her Mom.
One of the great perks of being a food blogger, at least in my mind, is doing product reviews. You get to try all sorts of new things and write about them. I will call my family over if possible so we can all try it and then I have more opinions to work with. My kids have even begun to call me and ask me if we get to sample anything that week. This week the were very excited to hear what I was working with. The girls love balsamic and my son and Kevin love meatloaf, so the fact that they were both being put together made them all very happy and anxious. Did I say anxious? Let's change that to annoying. "Mom when are you making the meatloaves?" "I thought we were having the meatloaf tonight" "You did say you were making meatloaf right?" YES...sheesh. I do have a schedule I work with here people. But don't tell them that. It seems Burger King and I are supposed to have the same motto "We do it your way". Wait, I think Burger King has even dropped that. I need to renegotiate this whole thing!
Well, in this instance, I should have listened to them and thrown the schedule out the window. This meal should have been on the table ASAP!!
This little bottle changed my life. OK maybe that was a bit dramatic, but I can tell you it sure has changed how I will be cooking in the future. No more reducing balsamic vinegar only to mess up and have it reduce too far or even burn (yes that has happened to me more than I would like to admit). This glaze is fantastic! Sweet and tangy, just the right consistency. Perfect for any protein, vegetable (stay tuned for a terrific veggie side dish), or even dessert (yes I said dessert! Try it on ice cream, life changing....I am telling you right now!).
Mandarano's Glaze & Sauce is made from a centuries old family recipe. It is 100% authentic, made from 100% Modena grown grapes, and bottled at the source. You can't get any better than that folks! It is 100% natural, gluten free, and suitable for all vegetarian diets.
They have get that rich flavor by blending 25, 12, and 2 year old balsamic, which achieves many of the same taste characteristics found in very expensive aged balsamics.
I have purchased some of those expensive balsamics and I can tell you that I won't be doing it again. Why would I when I have access to this? Don't believe me? How about the whole family? They were all gathered in the kitchen drizzling on their fingers and licking it off. I had to fight my way in to get the bottle from them before they finished the entire thing!!
In this recipe I used the sauce not only in the glaze of the meatloaf, but in the mix of the meat as well.
Then in the glaze that went on top. The result? My house smelled insanely fabulous as the meatloaves cooked, and when they were finally done the family attacked them like a pack of wolves. I will be making these again soon, the family has requested them already, and you know how they are about waiting.
Mini Meatloaves with Balsamic Glaze
2 pounds ground beef (could use turkey)
1 large zucchini, grated
1 large carrot, grated
1/2 large onion, grated
5 cloves garlic, grated or minced
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup parsley, plus more for garnish if wanted
1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
Cracked black pepper
1 cup ketchup
1 cup Mandarano's Blasamic Glaze & Sauce, seperated
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl combine the ground beef, zucchini, carrot, onion, garlic, eggs, bread crumbs, parsley, cheese, and 1/4 cup Mandarano's Blasamic Glaze & Sauce. Mix until just combined. Do not over mix as this can result in a tight meatloaf.
In a small bowl combine the ketchup and the remainder of the Mandarano's Blasamic Glaze & Sauce.
For 4 loaf shaped patties on the parchment paper. Brush the loaves with the glaze. Bake for 45 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
Now do you want a bottle of this fabulous sauce all to yourself? Of course you do! Well this is your lucky day, Mandarano is giving away one free bottle to a reader of my blog!!
The contest starts today and ends August 30th so spread the word!
But that is not all! As an added bonus, Mandarano is offering a 10% discount on their website to all of you!
Just go to www.balsamicsauce.com and at checkout, enter this Promo Code: TBC
Disclosure: I received a selection of products to sample but was not compensated for this post. All opinions are my own.
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