Meat Loaf with Piquant Mushroom Sauce

Meat Loaf with Piquant Mushroom Sauce

2 lbs ground beef chuck, 3/4 lb spicy pork sausage or Italian sweet sausage links w/casings removed (with ground fennel), 1 onion finely chopped, 1 celery rib finely chopped, 1 lg garlic clove minced, 1/2 tsp dried thyme, 1/2 tsp dried crushed bay leaf, 1 TB chopped fresh dill, 1/4 c ketchup, 2 eggs, 2 slices toasted white bread, 1 tsp salt, Tabasco and freshly ground pepper, 2 c beef stock, 3 TB ketchup, 1 c finely chopped mushrooms, watercress for garnish

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine chuck, sausage, onion, and celery in a large mixing bowl and mix lightly with hands. Add garlic, herbs, the 1/4 c ketchup , eggs, and mix again thoroughly. Crumble toast finely over mixture, add salt, Tabasco, pepper to taste, and continue mixing till all ingredients are well blended. Pack mixture tightly into a 1 1/2 quart loaf dish, and bake 1 1/2 hours or till nicely browned on top. Shortly before loaf is finished baking, bring stock to the boil in a saucepan, add the 3 TB ketchup, stir, and reduce slightly. Add mushrooms, reduce heat to moderate, and cook for about 5 minutes or till sauce is reduced to desired consistency.