How’s about a little tweak for Valentine’s Day?  Polpettone, which sounds very glamorous indeed, is Italian for meatloaf and I have to say, in the light of the crazy blizzard around here, you may want to consider losing your plans to sally forth to some overcrowded, overpriced  restaurant and instead, wire up this baby for tonight.

Now I do know that this photograph is not, well, perhaps my best or most inspiring.  If it’s any kind of recommendation, however,  please know that the polpettone was very picturesque, just moments before this when it came out of the oven.  Before I could so much as grab my camera, the hungry maniacs around here had torn into it and this is all that I could salvage for a photograph.  In fact, it was such a hit, I was grateful even to have snagged this rather pathetic shot. That funny gooey thing poking out from the middle is the salami/smoked mozzarella with which it’s stuffed.  I know. Completely over-the-top.  But “what th’?” as Mark Trail would say.  It’s only Valentine’s Day once a year, so why not give him something to make those statins worth it.

Now, I have to say that my normal meatloaf, which I recounted here in November 2010 is pretty darn good.  In fact, I continue to get reader response about it all of the time,  and people have literally stopped me in the street to opine on how great it is.  It’s easy as can be, delicious and, while not fancy, for some reason the only thing Felix ever wants to be his welcome home dinner when he arrives back from college.  High praise indeed I would say, because there’s no telling what fancy-schmancy stuff that kid could  be looking for on those rare occasions when his old ’83 diesel wends its way back from Williamsburg.

Now the original recipe for polpettone comes from my friend, Silvestro Silvestori, at the Awaiting Table cooking school  in Lecce in Puglia, Italy.  We made it when I was there in November and it was superb.  That being said, I’ve added and subtracted some things from Silvestro’s recipe to make it, well, my own.  I guess it’s more Italian-American now, and I do hope Silvestro won’t take offence as I’m headed back there in September and perhaps we’ll even make it then. 

In any case, I made this using a batch of my own meatloaf, the recipe for which you can find in the index on the right of my blog, or very easily by googling: “ClareFare meatloaf” , when it will pop up instantaneously.  

Should you decide to make it, I promise it will look prettier when it emerges from the oven.  No matter how it looks, however, please be prepared, for your Valentine to  take his first bite. He may swoon, but when he picks himself up off the floor, he will definitely proclaim you to the very best Valentine in the world.  

But really, there’s no need to send me flowers.  Just have a very happy Valentine’s Day, with lots of love from ClareFare.

Clare’s Polpettone

Serves 6

I batch of my meatloaf mix to be found on ClareFare from November 16, 2010

3/4 pound thinly sliced Genoa salami

3/4 pound smoked mozzarella, chopped into 1-inch dice


Prepare the meatloaf as directed in the previous post. Place half of the meat mixture in the baking pan.  Pat into a loaf-like shape and make a trough in the middle.  Line the trough with 1/2 of the Genoa salami, cover with the smoked mozzarella, and then top with the rest of the Genoa salami making it into a sort of smoked mozzarella filled envelope.  Pat the remaining meat mixture over the top and seal in the filling, retaining the loaf-like shape.

Bake as directed in the previous posting.

–Adapted from a recipe by Silvestro Silvestori at http://www.Awaitingtable.com 



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6 Responses to Polpettone

  1. Jeremy Marlton says:

    Twerking an old recipe?

    Sent from my iPhone


  2. Kristen Meyer Hallwas says:

    Clare, Thank you so much for this wonderful recipe! After the first bite I decided to marry myself. I’ve been making ‘Clare’s meatloaf’ for about a year now and adding the Genoa salami and smoke mozzarella has changed my life. As a child my mom and I would make what I now call ‘basic’ meatloaf and I loved it so much, so like you I’ve tweaked meatloaf many times and tried several things however this is the best ever…I am going to make this again and take it to my mom! Thank you for always making me look like a genius in the kitchen!

    • clarefare says:

      I’m delighted my meatloaf, and now this new Italian twist have made you so happy! Let me know what your Mom thinks too, cause it’s always top priority to keep Mom happy! Thanks so much for taking the time to write.

  3. ssilvestori says:

    Clare, this is great! I look forward to seeing you in Puglia in September! We have a lot to cook together!
    Silvestro Silvestori

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