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Chef's Hat Recipe: Mini Meat Loaves

Mini Meat Loaves

1 egg, lightly beaten

1 cup pasta sauce (your favorite canned/bottled variety)

1/2 cup fine dry bread crumbs (use Italian bread crumbs if you like)

1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped coarsely (or 2 tablespoons dried basil)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon white pepper

1 pound lean ground beef

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

In a large bowl combine egg, 1/2 cup of the pasta sauce, bread crumbs, 2 tablespoons of the basil (1 tablespoon if dried basil), salt and white pepper. Add beef and 1/2 cup of the cheese; mix well. Divide beef mixture into four equal portions. Shape each portion into a 5 1/2- by 2-inch oval loaf.

Spray the bottom of a 15- by 10- by 1-inch baking pan with non-stick cooking spray. Place the loaves in the pan. Spoon remaining pasta sauce over the top and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake 15 to 20 minutes until meat is thoroughly cooked.