We are getting ready for our final summer bliss: a week long vacation. Think beaches. Sunsets. Quiet. Oh, wait, the kids are coming. At least most of them. Now that Alex and Caleb are gainfully employed, they are staying home. Alone. Well, as alone as they can be with 3 dogs and 3 cats underfoot.

And why not? They are both young adults. Those two have big plans for their week alone. As far as they are concerned, they get a vacation, too: away from the younger siblings and the parents.

What could go wrong?

They just returned from grocery shopping. Yup, that’s right, they went out and loaded up the refrigerator for their week without Head Chef Mom. My kitchen now holds more junk food than I think they’ve eaten in years. Chips, Dr. Pepper, and candy are flung about. My freezer is full of burritos and ice cream novelties. Something tells me the stove top isn’t going to see much action for a week.

I hope upon my return they will have a new found appreciation for real food. At least their digestive tracts should!

I will have to make Caleb’s favorite: meatloaf under wraps. Want to try? Here is the recipe:

Meatloaf Under Wraps


6 ounces tomato paste
1.5 cups water
1.5 pounds ground beef (or chicken or turkey or whatever)
1 cup finely crushed crackers or bread crumbs
1 medium sized onion, finely chopped (1/2 cup-ish)
1 green pepper, finely chopped (1/2 cup-ish)
an egg
  • salt and pepper as you like
5 pounds potatoes, for mashing
butter and milk as needed for mashed potatoes
2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 can mushrooms, sliced

To prepare:

  • Set oven for 350 degrees F
  • blend tomato paste and water in saucepan; set aside
  • in a large bowl, combine 1/2 cup of the paste mixture from the pan, the ground beef, cracker crumbs, onion, pepper, egg, salt, and pepper
  • Shape into 2 loafs on a shallow baking sheet.
  • Bake for 45 minutes, or until meat is a safe temperature.
  • While the loaves are in the oven, prepare the mashed potatoes.
  • Add the 2 tbsp brown sugar and Worcestershire sauce to the tomato paste and water sauce pan. Stir well. Add the mushrooms. Heat until simmering.
  • When the loaves are done, “frost” them with the potatoes.
  • Top with the sauce. Serve and enjoy!

A slice of the finished meatloaf

One thought on When the Chef Takes a Vacation:

  • Corbin's avataron August 14, 2014 at 1:44 pm said:

    Well here we are, planning a vacation, okay cool sounds like fun right?
Right, okay so we plan it. In the planning my big brother wants to stay home. Okay, fine I can live with that.

(He says it’s for his work, I think it’s to play on his computer for 1 week) (just kidding).
 So we are going to a lake, yeah! Sounds like good fun!

But then my second big brother gets a job and just like that, he is staying home.


Oh well it should be fun… should.

Well, I will put on a new post when it is done so, talk to you then.

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