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Rumor has it you're hungry.
While I'm otherwise occupied with life's eventualities, please enjoy this recipe for a cold meatloaf sandwich as excerpted from The Irish Hungarian Guide to the Domestic Arts.
Step-by-step: How to make a cold meatloaf sandwich
1. Unwrap a two-or three-pound package of meatloaf mix (like your mom used to buy: that three-different-ground-meats thing in the butcher case, usually 1/3 beef, 1/3 pork and 1/3 veal) and plop it into a bowl.
2. Add a good shake of dry parsley, lots of salt and pepper, two or three squarshy shots of ketchup, a couple of shakes of Worcestershire sauce, a handful or so of dry bread crumbs and one very finely chopped medium-to-large yellow onion.
3. Bask in a surge of overconfidence and tell self, "Self, you have made this meatloaf so many times that checking the recipe Mom typed out for you and put in a mini three-ring notebook when you got your first apartment is redundant."
4. Get your damn hands in there and mix it up (use disposable latex gloves if you don't want to get icky meat stuff under your fingernails).
5. Add more ketchup if it seems too dry and more breadcrumbs if it seems too blucky. (You just sort of have to know what constitutes too dry or too blucky. If you figured out squarshy from step 2, you're already on the scene.)
6. Plop resulting mixture onto a large piece of heavy-duty foil (the duty of which is not nearly as heavy as it used to be, just ask your mom) and form it into a loaf.
7. Discard gloves. Wash hands.
8. Wrap loaf up tightly in tinfoil so it looks like a giant silver turd.
9. Put loaf in freezer.
10. Sit down and pop a beer.
11. Mid-sip, realize you forgot to put the egg in the meatloaf.
12. Engage in futile argument with self over importance of the addition of beaten egg to meatloaf.
13. Simultaneously win and lose argument
14. Say "aw shit" and let out a big sigh.
15. Retrieve meatloaf from freezer.
16. Say "aw shit" again when you look at the mixing bowl full of soapy water in the sink.
17. Wash and dry bowl.
18. Open meatloaf and plop into bowl.
19. Beat and add one egg.
20. Get out another pair of gloves.
21. Get your damn hands in there and mix in the egg, while noting how cold that meatloaf got even though it was only in the freezer for steps 9 through 15.
22. Not wanting to use yet another pair of gloves, remove only the left one and retrieve meatloaf recipe Mom typed out for you 20 years ago and make sure you haven't forgotten anything else.
23. Add some oregano and basil per Mom's recipe.
24. Using only the one hand that remains in a glove, mix that into the meatloaf as best you can.
25. Plop meatloaf back onto the tinfoil you used previously.
26. Realize that the used tinfoil is too crinkly to reuse, no doubt due to the decreased heaviness in the assertion "heavy-duty" on the box as noted in step 6.
27. Take off other glove and say "goddamnit."
28. Fumble around in the impossible plastic-bag-and-Saran Wrap drawer and retrieve not-as-heavy-duty-as-it-used-to-be tinfoil.
29. Swear when it doesn't tear properly.
30. Assign improper tearing to tinfoil dispenser box instead of operator error.
31. Place torn piece of tinfoil atop the microwave for future yet-to-be-determined use.
32. Tear off another piece of tinfoil.
33. Internally refuse to use another pair of gloves.
34. Using bare hands, form meatloaf into a loaf.
35. Wash hands, making sure to get icky meat stuff out from under fingernails.
36. Put meatloaf in freezer.
37. Finish the beer you poured in step 10.
38. Pay the Mortgage, clip the 50¢-off coupon for cottage cheese, buy cottage cheese while forgetting to use the coupon, scrub the toilets, make love, cry, laugh, shine, and fade for a few weeks.
39. Wake up one day and realize there is nothing for dinner.
40. Remember frozen meatloaf.
41. Forget to take meatloaf out of freezer to thaw.
42. With only step 40 in mind (and, naturally, not step 41), conduct day as if dinner will be homemade meatloaf.
43. Realize planned dinner is frozen solid.
44. Spend eighteen seconds deciding whether or not to schlep to the store, amass dinner ingredients and cook dinner.
45. Delude self into believing sufficient time does not exist between present time and dinnertime to complete step 44.
46. Read, employ marital aid, or nap until 25 minutes before dinner.
47. Order pizza from the two mean Italian ladies at the corner pizza joint who make the best pizza despite meanness.
48. Take meatloaf out of freezer for tomorrow's dinner.
49. Live another 23 hours or so.
50. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
51. Place unwrapped meatloaf in shallow baking pan with 1/2" of water.
52. Bake uncovered for about an hour and a half.
53. Make some mashed potatoes or salad or something while the meatloaf is baking.
54. Open a five-dollar bottle of wine.
55. Knowing that this is nothing more than an obligatory stop on your quest for a great cold meatloaf sandwich, consume meatloaf (deluged with A1 Steak Sauce if desired), potatoes and wine with family.
56. Refrigerate leftover meatloaf.
57. Spend the next 18 hours in sublime anticipation of forthcoming lunch.
58. Remove cold meatloaf from fridge and precisely cut one or two slices, depending on cross-sectional area of meatloaf and bread.
59. Marvel at how much easier it is to cut cold meatloaf than hot meatloaf.
60. Lightly toast two pieces of bread.
61. Slather one or both pieces of toast with mayonnaise.
62. Build sandwich: toast, meatloaf, shake of salt, shake of Tabasco, lettuce, toast.
63. Cut sandwich in half and part the halves such that satisfying cross section of sandwich is viewable.
64. Put a handful of Ruffles on plate, along with a pickle spear.
65. Turn on some Van Morrison, set plate on kitchen table.
66. Sit down.
67. Smile and consider sandwich.
68. Bite sandwich.
69. Inflate with breath as your shoulder blades unfurl into silken wings.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this departure from my normal format. See you next Friday!
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