4 lbs. ground chuck
1 cup bell peppers, coarsely chopped
1 cup onions, coarsely chopped
½ cup celery, finely chopped
8 cloves garlic, slivered and mashed
¼ cup parsley, minced
2 tsp. Frank Davis Beef Seasoning
2 cups cracker crumbs, more if needed
3 eggs, slightly beaten
2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp. Kitchen Bouquet
2 packets powdered brown gravy mix
2 cups whole milk
1 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. black pepper
12-16 small B-size creamer potatoes, whole
First, take out your crock pot and spray the crockery insert thoroughly with Pam. Then set it aside for a moment or two.
Meanwhile, in a large stainless steel bowl, mix together all of the ingredients (except the B-size potatoes). The preparation turns out best if you add the individual ingredients one at a time.
Now continue to knead everything together with your hands until the ground meat mixture is smooth and well blended.
Next, place two 8-inch non-stick skillets on the countertop. Using one skillet, fill it with the ground meat mixture and shape it into one large mounded meat pattie the size of the skillet.
Then place the skillet on the stovetop over medium-high heat and pan-fry the pattie (which should resemble a large hamburger) until it turns toasty brown and semi-crusty on the bottom.
At that point, place the other matching skillet over the one containing the pattie.
Then flip the skillets over quickly so that the top one ends up on the bottom and the bottom one ends up on top, effectively transferring the pattie from one skillet to the other.
Then pan-fry the pattie on its flip side until it, too, becomes toasty brown.
When the meat is well seared, walk it over to the crock insert and quickly slide it out of the skillet and into the crock.
Then place the small, uncooked, unpeeled potatoes around the edges of the pattie. (Note: if you'd like to do a double meatloaf, arrange the potatoes all over the top of the bottom pattie, then form and sear a second pattie, and drop that one directly onto the potato layer).
Finally, all that's left to do now is to put the lid in place on the crock pot and cook the dish on LOW for 8 to 10 hours or on HIGH for 4 to 6 hours.
A single pattie will feed a family of 6. You should make the tandem described above by stacking the second meat loaf on top of the first if you have a larger group to feed. Oh, yeah, and it's okay to place another layer of potatoes on top the second meat loaf. They'll cook just fine!
When you're ready to eat, a tossed salad, some hot bread right out of the oven, and a hearty scoop of meatloaf and potatoes will put the crowning touch on your Fat Tuesday celebration.
By the way, the best way to serve this recipe is to spoon it country-style right out of the crock pot onto your plate. Believe me, it's way too tender to attempt to slice it.