- Heat the oil in a saucepan over a moderate heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook, stirring often, for about 5 minutes or until the onions are soft and golden.
- Transfer half of the onion mixture to a large bowl and set aside. Stir the tomatoes with their juice, the stock and mixed herbs into the onions remaining in the pan. Season to taste. Bring to the boil, then cover and leave to simmer very gently, stirring occasionally, while preparing the meatloaf.
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC (350ºF, gas mark 4). Wash the spinach and put it in a large saucepan. Cover and cook over a high heat for 2–3 minutes, shaking the pan often, until the leaves are wilted.
- Tip the spinach into a colander to drain. When it is cool enough to handle, squeeze it dry with your hands, then chop it roughly and put it into a bowl. Stir in the crème fraîche and season with half of the nutmeg and salt and pepper to taste.
- Add the meat to the reserved onion, with the celery, carrot, porridge oats, thyme, milk, egg, mustard and remaining nutmeg. Season to taste. Mix the ingredients well.
- Lay a large sheet of cling film on the work surface and place the meat mixture in the centre. With a palette knife, spread the meat into a 23 x 18 cm (9 x 7 in) rectangle. Spread the spinach mixture evenly over the meat, leaving a 1 cm (½ in) border all round. Starting at a short end, carefully roll up the meat and spinach like a Swiss roll, using the cling film to help. Pat the sides into a neat shape and place the roll on a non-stick baking tray, discarding the cling film.
- Place the meatloaf in the centre of the oven and cook for 45 minutes, then remove from the oven and brush lightly all over with a little of the tomato sauce. Return to the oven and cook for 5 minutes to set the glaze and brown it slightly. To check if the meatloaf is cooked right through, insert a skewer into the centre and remove after a few seconds – it should feel very hot when lightly placed on the back of your hand.
- When the meatloaf is ready, remove it from the oven, cover loosely with foil and leave to stand for 10 minutes. Serve cut into slices, with the rest of the tomato sauce.
Each serving provides
Excellent source of niacin, vitamin A, vitamin B1, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, vitamin C, vitamin E, zinc. Good source of calcium, selenium, vitamin B2. Useful source of iron.
Some more ideas
Minced beef can be used on its own for a more traditional meatloaf, or you can use minced turkey, chicken or veal instead of either the beef or the pork. You could also use a combination of three different meats. * Leftover meatloaf is delicious sliced and served cold with salad or in sandwiches. * For 2 meatloaf and potato pies, each serving 4, make the meatloaf mixture as in the main recipe, but use 900 g (2 lb) spinach and 4 tbsp crème fraîche or soured cream for the spinach filling. Cook 1.5 kg (3 lb 3 oz) peeled potatoes in boiling water until tender; mash with enough milk to make a light fluffy texture and season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide the meat mixture in half and press into two 23 cm (9 in) springform tins. Top each with half of the spinach, spreading it into an even layer, then cover with the mashed potatoes. Set the tins on baking trays and bake in a preheated 180ºC (350ºF, gas mark 4) oven for 55 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes, then remove the sides of the tins and serve the pies cut into wedges.
Spinach provides good amounts of carotenoid compounds and several antioxidants, including vitamins C and E, and substantial amounts of the B vitamins. * Porridge oats are an excellent source of soluble fibre, which can help to reduce high blood cholesterol levels.