What to do when the book is so boring you can’t finish the page?

plllog

Make meatloaf!




2 lbs. ground beef (grass fed)

1 lb. Italian turkey sausage

3.5 sheets matzah, pulerized

1/3 lb. carrots, minced

1 onion between baseball and softball size, minced

overflowing handful of parsley, fresh chopped or dry

3 eggs

salt & pepper

neutral oil or oil spray


Run the matzah through the food processor, to small crumbs, first, while it's dry. Dump in A big stainless bowl. Run the carrots, onion, and parsley if it’s fresh, through the FP until minced. Dump in the bowl, inc. parsley if dried. Add seasoning, generously. Peel and break up sausage into bowl. Break up beef into bowl. Add eggs, break the yolks, and use fingers to combine all well. Don't overwork or squish. Coat two 8” loaf pans with oil. Form the meat mix into two loaves without mashing And place in pans. Bake at 350° F for one hour. Let rest before slicing.

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lindac92

Interesting...I don't make my meat loaf in a loaf pan....I shape it like I would a loaf of bread and put it in the middle of a larger pan and the fat drains away, Everyone I know does it that way....although the recipes are all very different.

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plllog

The sausage was fattier than the kind I’m used to, which I didn't realize until it was cooked. It's all rendered out of the loaves, which taste fine. I'd never seen meatloaf made in a large pan until I joined this forum. Everybody here whose meatloaf I know uses a loaf pan. Some use ones with draining bottoms. I don't have those, but my mix is usually a lot leaner and doesn't need it.

Of course the point is meatloaf is more fun than this book I need to finish. :)

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fawnridge (Ricky)

Close the book and open one of mine.


Ricky's books



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plllog

Ricky, I have your books, but I have to finish this one before Tuesday.

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bbstx

Plllog, on a reading forum that I once participated in, the rule was subtract your age from 100. Stick with the book that many pages. If you still aren’t interested, don’t waste more time on it.


I’ve also always made meatloaf without a loaf pan, usually shaped and placed in the middle of a pie plate because that’s what Momma did. Once I was caught up in something at the office, but DH was home. I called him and told him how to make a meat loaf, including putting it in a pie plate. I forgot the “shape it like a loaf” instruction. When I got home, he had patted the meat loaf out to fill the pie plate! Who doesn’t know at meatLOAF is shaped like a loaf? I can name one.... HA!

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plllog

LOL! Kiddie Lit.? Double LOL! Meatfrisbee?

i actually want to read the book. I've plowed through another 50 pages, which got better after the one in question.

To me, it doesn’t even look like meatloaf if it doesn’t have straight sides. 8” loafs pans are popularly called “meatloaf pans”, here, and that’s what I bought mine for. It really isn't unusual! I do believe that the freeform loaf is common, too. Or so I’ve seen in CF.

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gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)

Have never made meatloaf in a loaf pan in my life!! Mom made hers in a large cast iron skillet just shaped like a large loaf. I inherited that skillet and still make mine the same way. That way, you get a crispy brown crust on all surfaces!

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bbstx

Ooh, garden gal, I’m going to try a cast iron skillet next time. Never thought of that, but it sounds like a super idea!


plllog, at one time I had a loaf pan with the perforated inner pan for meatloaf. It got lost in some move and I never replaced it. Just went with what Momma had always done.

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Jasdip

I used to always make meatloaf in loaf pans until fairly recently. Always had to drain the fat, but it made for nice slices for meatloaf sandwiches.

When I'm tired of tossing and turning and can't sleep after waking up in the middle of the night, I've been known to get up and make bread.

I'm on a real Outlander series kick. Each book is hundreds of pages, the one I'm currently on is 1008 pages. I'm currently on 396. :-)

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colleenoz

In my book club, often I’m one of the few (sometimes the only) who actually finished the book. There are a handful I just couldn’t plow through, and I am reminded of a quote often (erroneously) attributed to Dorothy Parker: “It is not a book to be lightly thrown aside. It should be thrown with great force.”

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plllog

LOL! It's not a book club assignment, but I appreciate the sentiment. Years ago, I was tapped to guest moderate a book club meeting. I knew that only one or two people would have read it, because most people in book clubs are more for the snacks than the books, so I prepared a bunch of background information to share, and questions of the what would you do variety, so that all could participate. It actually went very well, but if I were a member of that group, I'd resent the lack of reading. :)


I was going to make stew today, but stuck to the book. ;)

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seagrass_gw Somewhere

I was invited to join a book club in our neighborhood after one of their members passed away. I went to their first meeting where each person was asked to bring titles of books to vote on for the year. I like spy/espionage novels. That didn't fly with them. I tried reading the first book they agreed on by a Canadian author about a young gay man coming of age and just got depressed reading about the angst of his life. And then the next one was a book of poems.

So I backed out and said "thanks, but not for me". I read to escape, not engage or ponder. Enough of that in the here and now.

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Fun2BHere

When I was younger, I always made myself finish a book whether I liked it or not. I think I did that because purchasing a book was a luxury and I needed to squeeze every bit of value out of it. These days, if I dislike a book after a chapter or two, I read the end and then recycle the book in some way. There are many books that are highly recommended that hold no interest for me at all.

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plllog

Okay, I undersold the book. ;) It's actually a good read. Most pages aren't boring, either. It's Madame Fourcade’s Secret War, about the leader of one of the biggest groups of French underground intelligence gathering for MI6 during WWII. I'd just finished A Woman of No Importance about an American woman, not really known much prior to the book, who ran an Important underground French resistance group who also did intelligence gathering, as well as guerrilla actions and sabotage, but working for SOE, British rivals of MI6. The latter is a better book, but the one I'm reading now is also good. The stories are interesting in their differences and similarities. A friend recommended it, and at first I thought it was the same book I had. They came out within a month of each other, one Random House, one Penguin, and those imprints merged some time ago... Both of these boss ladies, in a very sexist France, were beautiful young women with limps. Mme. Fourcade reads more like a series of reports, and based on memoirs published after the war. Woman is more immediate and chronological, and seems to be more from primary sources. Even if you prefer novels, you might like these books.

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Sooz

I was in a book club where the selections of the books were all hoity-toity, to show how very cultured and worldly we are. Right, like I fit right in (NOT!). I was more in it for the socialization than the reading of those uninteresting tomes. My default was to read the synopsis on Amazon and other book sites so I could add something to the discussion. As for a book that doesn't grab my attention after a few first pages, I'll skip to the end and figure I didn't miss much in between & I saved myself from excessive boredom.

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seagrass_gw Somewhere

Plllog - I'm going to to look both of those titles up. We traveled on business for many years to Europe and lived in the Netherlands. I'm intrigued about what happened during WWII. I learned so much history when we were there. We lived in a row house near Den Haag and the landlord bought it from a man who had to go to a nursing home. When the previous owner was a young boy, Nazi troops came to the neighborhood to conscribe young men into their service and he escaped them by crawling under the foundation of the row house. I could never get it out of my head that Nazi boots had gone up the stairs where we lived.

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colleenoz

My book club isn’t terribly intellectual - there’s 11 of us so each person has a turn at hosting and January off. It’s rare that everyone attends any given meeting. The hostess chooses the book to be discussed the following month, and there are no rules about what she chooses, though informally we encourage each other not to get into a rut.

I tend to choose books that are a little “out there”, like foreign writers, or science fiction or other books I think will stretch the envelope. Most of the members (many of us have been in book club for over 30 years) choose fairly intelligent and interesting books and many I’ve enjoyed are books I wouldn’t have otherwise read, so that’s a plus.

One member, though, is a bit hard of understanding (and lately I’ve been wondering- along with another member who brought it up in private - if she’s starting down the dementia trail) and usually chooses some chick lit fluff which is eminently forgettable. Her book is next up for reading but I’m not in a rush 😁

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seagrass_gw Somewhere

Colleenoz - I just couldn't put myself out there to discuss what I read. Sometimes at the end of a novel there are actually questions to ponder about the story, I always find that odd. I might have enjoyed a discussion about cookbooks!

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Elizabeth

If I dislike a book I have started I delete it or recycle it. I make note of the author and avoid them. As a child I was scolded for doing this and pushed to read the whole book as I was told I was being hasty and might like it after all. My first instincts with books was always right.

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neely

Curiously I thought...’A woman of no importance’...I’m sure I’ve read that but it turns out not to be yours. I am thinking instead of the Oscar Wilde title of the same name.

During lockdown I’ve been reading lots of books about foreign countries and have Google maps open at the same time to see the various towns and villages mentioned.

I am also a bake in the loaf tin person but will give free form a try next time.

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bbstx

@neely if you are looking for books where the locale is nearly a character, try the Bruno, Chief of Police books by Martin Walker. They are set in the Dordogne. I often have Google maps pulled up trying to see where things are. Even though the main town name is fictional, there are other towns/sites in the area that are real. While the books are murder mysteries, there are no gruesome descriptions. They are more like cozies without the tea and crumpets. Regretfully, they need to be read in order. And since we are on the Cooking Forum, let me mention that Bruno cooks often. There are no actual recipes, but there are fairly detailed descriptions of what he is preparing and how it is being prepared. However, I do not ever recall his making meatloaf. A terrine, maybe.

I’ve never been in a book club. It sounded too much like homework to me. DD’s MIL is in one. When it came out, they read Forty Shades of Gray. I would have liked to have been a fly on the wall for the discussion that ensued!

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colleenoz

We mostly talk a bit about the book in turns - what I liked/didn’t like, what does this bit mean?, why did s/he do that?, easy stuff, then it devolves into a good local gossip session, then we have tea/coffee and home baked goodies 😁. All very low stress.

Robert Parker‘s “Spenser” detective series has a lot of cooking and eating in good restaurants in it.

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bbstx

Love the Spenser series, including the continuation by Ace Atkins. Spenser may cook, but Susan Silverman never seems to eat more than half a pea!!

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Jasdip

LOL so true about the Spenser and Susan Silverman. He's quite a cook!

The Outlander series that I alluded to that I'm reading, actually took me by surprise that I'm enjoying it so much.

A woman from the 1960's Boston was visiting Scotland with her husband, and visited a stone henge and was transported back in time to the early 1700's. She experiences both centuries. The love between Claire and Jamie is more than addictive and heart-warming (and wishful!). We all should have a Jamie in our lives!

I actually mentioned to my friend who recommended the series that if I win the lottery, she and I will travel to Scotland! The lush greenery and mountains is drawing me.

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plllog

I'm so glad you're enjoying that, Jasdip! I started to read it when it first came out, and had been billed as sci fi, was appalled in a feminist way with the opening bits, and when it turned out to be Scotland, I threw the book across the room. I've actually enjoyed the TV show, which is ridiculous in the plotting (but no more so than other romantic adventures) but fun, and a feast for the eyes. I admit, there might have been worth in the books past those opening bits, but I just can't go there. I also threw a John Grisham novel across the room. It was from later in his career, so I assume it was suffering from I'm-too-famous-to-be-edited-itis.

The only book I regret not finishing is The Intuitionist by Colson Whitehead. I read most of it when it first came out, loved it, but real life made me put it down for awhile, and I would have had to start over to finish it. I should put it on my list. Many authors don't know how to end, and there comes a point where they run out of steam 2/3 of the way through. I feel no compunction abandoning them when I feel they’ve abandoned me! But I had wanted to finish The Intuitionist, and really should.

@Neely, so sorry! I forgot about the play. That may be the inspiration for the title. The Resistance book is by Sonia Purnell, an Englishwoman of merit. Full title: A Woman of no Importance: The Untold Story of the American Spy Who Helped Win World War II.

I do belong to a group of readers, and every so often we do all read the same thing, but more often we discuss what we're reading, ourselves, or have a general theme where we all choose our own books. Sometimes, it’s more like book reports than a discussion group, but the books are interesting, because people like what they're reading, and when we all read the same book, it's usually something old and seminal, so likely to be enjoyed by all. Usually, people will also be reading up about the authors, related materials, Interpretations in other media, etc., rather than a single book. It's very different from the standard book club format.

Re food in novelss, generally, I’m not too impressed. Nero Wolfe was a character who was both gourmet and gourmand, and discussed food a lot. A paperback edition of the books awhile back included afterwords with recipes, I think also by Rex Stout (the author). One of them, which has stuck with me for many years is scrambled eggs. His recommendation: cook on very low heat, and as edges form, worry them, until the eggs are cooked. I've always thought that must lead to phenomenal eggs, but I've never had the urge to try it. ;D

Today, I probably don’t have time, but I just got a beautiful cabbage. I read or saw something about braising it with salty things between the leaves. I want to try that.


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donna_in_sask

My husband is stubborn about finishing a book he's started. If I grow disinterested or really dislike the main character, I've been known to abandon a book (maybe I'll read the last page or two, lol).

The meatloaf recipe I use most often is from a Canadian magazine called Chatelaine. I just checked and it's online, look up Meatloaf in the Round.

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bbstx

At some point, John Grisham started phoning in his books. They were just too formulaic for me to enjoy. One of his latter books that I did enjoy was Playing for PIzza. It was about a washed up pro American football player who goes to Italy to play. Grisham also wrote a mystery set in Italy. I can’t remember the name. The plot was so thin, it was almost a travelogue. I came to the conclusion that at some point, Grisham had taken a trip to Italy and decided to turn it into “research” so it became a deductible business expense.


Plllog, your book group sounds like a friend’s “book club.” They each read whatever interests them, then meet and talk about what they are reading. From time to time, they will have an author come speak to them. It sounds interesting, but you basically have to be a legacy to join. The number is limited and membership is bequeathed from mother to daughter.


When DH and I did a 2 week trans-Atlantic repositioning cruise to Italy, I took the complete Outlander series on my Kindle. There was so much to do on the ship, I never got around to reading it. I tried to watch the TV series, but I couldn’t get into it, even though I really wanted to. So many people seem to enjoy it.

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party_music50

I need to seek out this Spenser series. lol!

Re meatloaf, my mother made hers loaf style in a glass loaf-pan -- her topping was some kind of tomato-based thing, but I can't remember whether the base was ketchup or tomato sauce. My BF makes his into a disc-shape, baking it in a cast iron pan. He concocts some topping mix that I'm sure includes ketchup, brown sugar, various things and something a little spicey -- I love his topping. lol! Meatloaf has never been a favorite of mine, but I definitely prefer my BF's version over my mom's. :O)

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plllog

My meatloaf is different than my mother's but tastes the same. No topping, Crunchy crust.

i’m happy to report that the book was finished yesterday, and there’s still some meatloaf.

Hint: A wheat flour tortilla makes an excellent meatloaf sandwich, because it’s easier to keep the meatloaf from squishing out the sides, and one can cut the meatloaf thicker without making it too tall to bite.

I don't make meatloaf often, but I really like it. :)

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nancyofnc

I have been reading and reading all the books I can get through our local library. Books on the Go lets you choose the books you want, they package them up and put in paper bags to pick up at a prescribed time and then you return to an open bin. I loved to just scan the shelves, now it is so different I end up with stuff I wouldn't have normally picked up so it is fun. The librarians can also send you a list of authors/fiction titles that you might like based on the ones you read and enjoyed. I haven't disliked any they have picked for me!

For meatloaf, I make a double batch in large cupcake tins. I like the crunchy edges that happens when they bake and they're perfect for popping from the freezer into the micro for instant meals. Always have to have ketchup/brown sugar topping at the last few minutes. I do hide carrots, onions, sometimes diced green beans, sweet peppers or celery in them.

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plllog

Nancy, not “hiding”! Flavor and moisture!

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