Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Tyler Florence Family Meal: Book Review Featuring Tolan's Glazed Turkey Meatloaf

There are a lot of “celebrity chefs” who I admire…their recipes inspire me to flex my culinary muscles and try new foods and cooking styles. They also feed my cookbook addiction. One of my favorite chefs is Tyler Florence...his demeanor on his TV shows is always so friendly and approachable. He’s rarely steered me wrong. In fact, Tyler's Ultimate is one of my go-to cookbooks! Rodale Press graciously sent me a copy of Tyler’s latest cookbook, Tyler Florence Family Meal, to review and test some of the recipes. If you have any of his cookbooks in your collection, you know that his books are written in a very down-to-earth manner. This book is no exception. The recipes featured run the gamut from simple homestyle food to more upscale items that are featured in his restaurants. 

The concept of the “family” meal is explored in all its iterations: meals he serves his family at home, foods that are served at potlucks and dinners he hosts for friends and family, and foods that are served at his family of restaurants. There’s a bit of something for everyone here. One thing that I loved about the book is that Tyler proves he’s no snob when it comes to food. A family coconut cake recipe that he shares starts with a cake mix, making it less intimidating for someone like me who can be a bit baking-challenged. He even has a recipe for Chile Relleno Rice that uses cream of chicken soup as part of the base!

I don’t know about you, but I really admire a professional chef who’s well-versed in the classics like Beef Bourguignon but can still whip up a simple rice dish for a potluck! Simply put: Tyler gets it! Sometimes home cooks want to pull out all the stops to make a Wow Meal...but sometimes they want to whip up something fast without sacrificing flavor in the process. I appreciate a chef who doesn’t look down their nose at incorporating a few convenience products now and then.

So many of the recipes in the book caught my eye. Especially his Waffle French Toast with Warm Berry Compote, Apple Brown Betty with Ice Cream, and Salt-and-Pepper Chicken Wings. When it came time to pick one recipe to spotlight for this post, I went with a comfort classic: meatloaf. Tyler includes a killer recipe for his wife Tolan’s meatloaf. It’s a glazed turkey meatloaf flavored with sautéed onion and crispy pieces of bacon. Do I have your attention? Good...because this meatloaf is off-the-hook good!!

Tolan's Glazed Turkey Meatloaf
from Tyler Florence Family Meal

Step 1:  Preheat oven to 350. Combine 1 slice bread (torn in pieces) and 1 cup whole milk in a measuring cup. Set aside for a few minutes. Meanwhile, add 1/2 diced yellow onion, 1 minced clove garlic, and 1/2 cup diced thick-cut bacon to a small skillet. Saute over medium heat for 10 minutes, until the onions are translucent.

Step 2:  Add the following ingredients to a large mixing bowl: 1 lb. ground turkey breast, the sauteed onion-bacon mixture, the milk-soaked bread (discard the extra milk), 1 large egg, 1.5 tbs. ketchup, 1 tbs. Worcestershire sauce, and 1 tbs. salt.

Mix well to combine -- clean hands are PERFECT for this! Shape the mixture into an oblong mound on a non-stick baking dish or on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment.

Step 3:  Make the glaze by combining the following ingredients in a small saucepan: 1/2 cup ketchup, 1/4 cup Dijon mustard, and 1/2 cup lightly packed light brown sugar. Bring to a boil, stirring often.

Step 4:  Spoon or brush the glaze on top of the meatloaf, letting it go down the sides. 

Bake the meatloaf for about 1 hour, until the internal temperature reaches 160F. Let the meatloaf rest for 15-20 minutes before slicing, to let the juices redistribute.

This meatloaf is full of flavor and moist, and the kitchen smells wonderful while it cooks! I served it with organic corn on the cob and roasted spiced baby potatoes. The only deviation I made from Tyler's orginal recipe was to leave off the strips of bacon that he wrapped on top of the meatloaf before adding the glaze and cooking. I only had enough bacon in the fridge for what went into the actual loaf!  I also halved the original recipe since it's just two of us a Casa Garcia. I hope you'll give this meatloaf a try and that you'll add Tyler Florence Family Meal to your Christmas Wish List!!


  1. Oh my word that looks so delicious! The mention of bacon definitely got my attention. I am making this soon!

  2. Thank you for the review. I seen this book the other day in the bookstore and almost added it to my collection, but thought that maybe I would reserve it for another time. I am purchasing this book now. Thanks again.

  3. Ooh, Wendy, this loaf looks amazing! My husband has been craving it like crazy lately, and this will be right up both of our alleys! Thanks for sharing this droolworthy dish. Have a great day!

  4. Wendy, this looks SO good! I have never really made really good meatloaf, but I'm thinking even I could do well with this recipe. I really like Tyler too!

  5. I love a new cookbook! Thanks for the review. I don't own any of Florences books, but they are on my ever growing wish list :)

  6. This has to be the best-looking meatloaf I've seen! I also love Tyler, and I was excited to see that you had such a glowing review of his book. Thank you so much for sharing, sweet friend. I hope you have a wonderful Thursday!

  7. LUCKY!!! I LOOOOOVE me some Tyler Florence, too! His recipes are always spot on for me and my family. I will have to gift this recipe to my friend and of course myself. Thanks!

  8. Love meatloaf and Tyler Florence, lol. Delicious meatloaf, Wendy, and I really the glaze is gorgeous.

  9. This meatloaf is nice and juicy -- likely from the bacon :lol:! The glaze is really nice...tangy and a touch sweet. We like meatloaf, so I'm always looking for new versions to try. This one is really a winner!!

  10. This meatloaf looks so good. I will substitute Trader Joe's uncured turkey bacon, which even my husband will eat. It is wonderful, no nitrates.
    Will add this recipe to my collection. Thanks for sharing.

  11. This recipe caught my eye because it has turkey in it. My husband can't eat much red meat, and I'm always looking for new recipes substitute turkey. This looks so delicious, I'll have to try it:) Oh, and Tyler Florence is one of my favorite chefs too, his recipes are great....and he's just too darned cute!

  12. Oh, I also love Tyler Florence! So does my husband... Tyler's show is one of the few food network shoes that my husband will happily watch (along with Good Eats). He seems like such a down to earth guy. Great job with the meatloaf!

  13. Ok everyone, here's my 15 minutes of fame.... Tyler Florence tweeted me once... yes, it's true. He commented on a tweet I made when I was making his lemon hollandaise..... He said (and I quote) "That's a great recipe."
    This meatloaf looks really good - I love turkey!

  14. I agree with Becky on the bacon... It's great and will work well in this. Thanks for sharing this great recipe at Saturday Swap! I'm bookmarking to try this. Sounds like the perfect comfort food on a cold night!!! Have a great start to your week.


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