Embutido: Filipino-Style Meatloaf

Embutido

If there’s one comfort food that both Americans and Filipinos can identify with, it’s meatloaf. I have some fond memories from my childhood of stabbing a piece of my mother’s meatloaf
with my fork, dipping it in some ketchup, and then plunging the
tomato-clad meat into my mouth, followed by a forkful of steamed rice.

Oh yes, we Filipinos loves us some meatloaf–or more specifically, Filipino Meatloaf known as Embutido.

What makes Embutido different from regular ol’ meatloaf?

Well firstly, instead of being baked in a loaf pan like meatloaf, Embutido is usually rolled into a log shape in cheese cloth or foil and then baked or steamed. I’ve read that Embutido is cooked in this way because in its original form (a long, long time ago) Embutido was nothing more than ground meat stuffed into big hog casings–much like a giant sausage (hence the current practice of rolling it in cheese cloth or foil).

Embutido also sets itself apart from regular ol’ meatloaf in that Embutido is usually stuffed with whole hard boiled eggs and whole hotdogs!

Yes, hot dogs. Or if you’re really lucky, Vienna Sausages.

I’m sure there are some of you out there scratching your domes over the thought of a meatloaf studded with whole eggs and wieners. In fact, when serving Filipino Meatloaf to someone who’s never had it
before, they are likely to say something like:

“Why, there’s whole eggs and wieners in
this meatloaf! Either this is some sort of cruel joke or
[takes bite of Embutido] this is the awesomest meatloaf known to man!”

Indeed, Embutido is the awesomest meatloaf known to man.

Not only does the filling of wieners and eggs make for a striking presentation when the Embutido is sliced, but wieners and eggs taste good too. Mmmm, wieners and eggs.

Wiener-Free (sigh)

If you couldn’t already tell from the pictures in this post, I did not include any hot dogs or Vienna Sausages in my Embutido. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy wiener-stuffed meat as much as the next guy (culinary speaking of course). But on account of the wife’s current condition, I kept any and all wieners out of my loaf since processed nitrate-laden meats are supposedly bad for pregnant women (the shame!). Under less fertile circumstances, I definitely would have rolled with Vienna Sausages.

As a kid, I also remember having Embutido at parties in which it was studded with raisins. I remember my mother putting raisins in her meatloaf too, but over time, those additions disappeared altogether–mostly because my brothers and I hate raisins, but also possibly because my mother was getting lazy in the kitchen… I never know what she’s doing back there.

Ah, Wedding Crashers. It’s a classic.

Anyhoo, to make up for the absence of raisins in my own Embutido, I added a touch of dark muscovado sugar to give the meatloaf just a hint of sweetness. And even though my Embutido is plenty moist and flavorful when it comes out of the oven, I still do enjoy it dipped in ketchup with some rice on the side.

Embutido: Filipino-Style Meatloaf

Serves 6-8

Makes 2 loaves

1 Tablespoon muscovado sugar, or brown sugar
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1 pound ground pork
1 pound ground beef
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
4 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 eggs, beaten
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Filling:
Hard boiled eggs
Hot dogs or Vienna sausages, left whole

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine the sugar and soy sauce in a small bowl, stir until sugar dissolves, and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the pork, beef and vegetables. Add the beaten eggs, the soy and sugar, and the black pepper to the meat mixture and stir until everything is well-combined (mixing with your hands is best for this).

Evenly divide the meat mixture between two sheets of aluminum foil about 15-inches long. Spread the meat into a rectangle (about 10×6 inches) in the middle of the foil, and then place filling (hard boiled eggs, hot dogs and/or Vienna Sausages) in the center of the meat:

2 eggs, sans wieners

Using the foil, tightly roll the meat over the filling and into a log shape. Twist the ends of the foil closed, ensuring the meat is tightly packed:

Rollin’ up a couple of fatties.

Place the rolled meat onto a cookie sheet (it may be helpful to line the cookie sheet with more foil, as the meat will leak fat and juices), then place in the oven for 1 hour to 1hour 15 minutes. You can also check for doneness (160 degrees F. is good) by sticking an instant-read thermometer through the foil and into the meat–just make sure the thermometer is stuck in all meat rather than in an egg or sausage, otherwise you’ll get a false reading.

Allow the meat to cool in the foil before unwrapping. Once meat is cool, unrwrap and slice. Serve with white rice, or enjoy leftovers in some Pan de sal for a Pinoy Meatloaf Sandwich.

The Awesomest Meatloaf Known To Man!

  • Norm Montes May 12, 2009, 6:01 pm

    I had forgotten about this dish! It is one of the best!
    Wasn’t there a sauce when this was served, or am I thinking of another dish?
    Marvin, I think you’re awesome as a blogger. You are in the same league as MarketMan!

    Reply
  • Efren May 12, 2009, 6:16 pm

    wow, i haven’t had embutido in so long….my dad used to put raisins in his too, and i’d have to go in and take them all out because i hate raisins also.
    oh, i did your green mangoes and bagoong–though i let the green mangoes ripen too much so they were actually pretty sweet. bleh. still tasty though.

    Reply
  • Katherine May 12, 2009, 6:43 pm

    The raisins were always my least favorite part. Which is a shame because this was always one of my favorite dishes :)

    Reply
  • jenn May 12, 2009, 7:15 pm

    I was actually think about making some embutido the other day, but I didn’t have enough ingredients. This is one os my fav pinoy dishes. I remember going home last yeat and this was almost the only thing i ate everyday. Oddly enough it was during a fiesta so there were leftovers.

    Reply
  • caninecologne May 12, 2009, 7:33 pm

    i loved having raisins in embutido but my brother and sister hated it, so my mom would make separate ones! sometimes my mom would also put in tiny chopped pieces of chorizo de bilbao…

    Reply
  • Mila May 12, 2009, 7:59 pm

    I wonder if there are Pinoys who don’t put eggs and/or hotdogs in their embotidos… Sacrilege, I’m sure.
    This dish always makes me think of xmas, my mom would make a hundred of these in the weeks leading to xmas, and we’d have them practically everyday after the big noche buena. Sort of like our version of turkey, and all those leftovers. She would add olives to the mix, and pimiento. I always wanted the slices with the egg in it.
    To make sure the mix tasted just right, she’d fry a small piece, let us kids taste it. I loved that bit the most, a bit crunchy, like a slightly sweet pork patty.

    Reply
  • pleasurepalate May 12, 2009, 11:06 pm

    Awwww…I haven’t had embutido in sooooo long. I think I’m going to pick up some ingredients and make it this weekend. Thanx for the recipe!

    Reply
  • Manggy May 12, 2009, 11:59 pm

    Thankfully only my brother hates raisins, so he’s the only one tormented when there’s embutido– love ’em :) Our version, though, grates the carrots (or processes them in the FP). This is one of my favorite “party” foods ever! :)

    Reply
  • joey May 13, 2009, 7:13 am

    I have to confess…I am the sacrilege Mila speaks of! Since I was a kid I wouldn’t eat meatloaf that had stuff in it…eggs, carrots, sausage, raisins, whatever. So we always had plain meatloaf with bacon on top (not inside)…I wonder if it’s too late for me…

    Reply
  • Erika May 13, 2009, 9:50 am

    Good lawd, I want some embutido now (with raisins, of course!)

    Reply
  • ahnjel May 13, 2009, 9:56 am

    omg! i miss my lolas meatloaf! oh marvin! try to fry it also its ggod as hell with more grease on it! hahaha
    i never knew pregnant women has to stay clear of processed food, crap! what have i been eating when i was pregnant?!
    anyway, that one mighty fine looking embutido you have there, never tried making one myself… maybe its about time i make one. thnaks for the recipe!

    Reply
  • Katrina May 13, 2009, 10:52 am

    I’m with Ahnjel — I likes my embotido fried! I actually don’t enjoy it much when it’s straight out of the wrapper. But once it’s sliced and fried up till it’s toasted and the edges are crispy…YUM!

    Reply
  • veedee May 13, 2009, 12:31 pm

    Haven’t made this in years, thanks! Can ground turkey be substituted for the pork and beef? I wonder how this will work out and taste like?

    Reply
  • veron May 13, 2009, 12:44 pm

    I really mucy prefer the filipino version of meatloaf than the american one. i guess it might be the addition of eggs.

    Reply
  • Joelen May 13, 2009, 3:07 pm

    Wow – its been ages since I’ve had embutido and I loved the vienna sausage part the best!

    Reply
  • Jerby May 15, 2009, 2:35 am

    Embutido, as we spell it here in Leyte, is an obligatory dish during fiestas and poncions. Left overs are fried for breakfast. People either bake or steam it. Oh and there’s another embutido they used to serve in the 70s and 80s which i remember because I liked it better. Fried embutido that’s dipped in an egg batter! My 70 year old father still knows how to cook it.. Cheers. Great site..
    If you wanna learn about Waray Cooking please check this little video blog I did on Hinatukan nga Baka (Beef with Coconut Milk)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FHLDay8CAxI
    thanks again..

    Reply
  • _ts of [eatingclub] vancouver May 15, 2009, 5:00 pm

    LOL: “I never know what she’s doing back there.”
    Since we are lazy, we’ve done embutido in a free-form rectangular shape (like “regular” meatloaf).
    Hmm, I didn’t know there was such a beast as FRIED embutido!

    Reply
  • lavaflow May 16, 2009, 2:24 pm

    Discovered your blog yesterday and kept reading into the early morning hours. You’re a great writer. And funny, too. Your love of Pilipino food is contagious. I’m a fan now and will check here often.

    Reply
  • Words and Nosh May 16, 2009, 6:09 pm

    Hey there- just found your blog. You are my foodie soul twin! Keep on, kasama.

    Reply
  • Tangled Noodle May 17, 2009, 8:46 am

    I never like embutido as a kid (maybe it was those pesky raisins that seemed to be in EVERYTHING!) but now this is looking might fine to the adult me! Thanks for the recipe – I’d love to try this out. But I think I’ll add an extra egg – I’d hate to be the one who ends up with the eggless slice!

    Reply
  • Arnold May 17, 2009, 6:33 pm

    I used to hate meatloaf and embutido, but a few years ago I had some embutido that made me realize that this dish is the shit. After that I had a meatloaf renaissance and have loved it ever since.
    And count me among others who don’t like raisins in this dish…or in torta. Why do they do that? There’s was always a pile of raisins on my plate when I was a kid. Actually, there would still be a pile today. hahaha.

    Reply
  • Burnt Lumpia May 18, 2009, 10:54 am

    Thanks very much for the kind compliment, Norm, but Markeman kicks my ass any day;) And I’m not sure about a sauce, I never had it any other way besides with ketchup.
    Hi Efren! Raisins are overrated. And I’m glad I got you to do the green mangoes and bagoong too.
    You could always leave the raisins out, Katherine:)
    It always seemed to be a party dish for us too, jenn. Though I think embutido is easy enough to make anytime.
    Mmmm. chorizo! That would be a sausage I would love too caninecologne!
    Hi Mila! If there are those who don’t add the eggs or hotdogs, hopefully they just call it meatloaf;)
    No problem, pleasurepalate! I hope you enjoy the recipe.
    That’s a great tip, manggy, grating the carrots. I will definitely do that the next time since the diced carrots were still a bit too crunchy for me, but still good.
    Even with your sacrilege, joey, I think the bacon more than makes up for it. My wife actually suggested I add bacon on top too because that’s how she likes meatloaf.
    Whatever floats your boat, Erika;) Raisins are OK, just not in MY embutido!
    Ahnjel, I had no idea that embutido could be fried! And yes, processed food is supposedly bad, though I’m sure it’s ok in moderation.
    You too, Katrina? I’ve never had embutido any other way than out of the wrapper. I never even considered frying it, but it sounds genius!
    Hello veedee. Yes, ground turkey can be used, but the loaf may end up drier than if a fatty meat was used.
    The eggs make a huge difference don’t they, veron? I love the yolk!
    I think vienna sausages are my favorite part too, joelen.
    Thanks for the video link Jerby! Great stuff!
    I was considering doing a free-form loaf too, ts. But I figured I should try the rolled version first.
    I’m glad you found me, lavaflow! Thanks for visiting!
    Thanks Words and Nosh!
    Yes, add as many eggs as will fit, tangled noodle. Ending up with an eggless slice is no fun!
    You and me both, Arnold! I would definitely still pick raisins out.

    Reply
  • Julie May 18, 2009, 1:34 pm

    I feel cheated! My mom never gave me meatloaf! ;D I’m trying this recipe soon.

    Reply
  • katalina May 18, 2009, 10:50 pm

    Hi!=) I have been running through your blog from time to time and find it so amusing that a Filipino-American like you has the fondness in cooking and eating Filipino food. Just like my Fil-Am cousin who easily chomps down a balut or two, putting me to shame coz I only eat the yellow-part:P Keep it up!=)
    I didn’t grew-up in a household that puts hotdogs or whole eggs inside their embutido regularly but we always have the raisins:P It’s quite common in our area to cook embutido without anything in the middle. The ones with the egg or hotdog in the middle is saved for fiestas and special occassions I guess.
    Fry your embutido’s until you get it crisp on both sides. The oil you fry the embutido in is good for steamed rice but not to your heart.=)

    Reply
  • pulutan May 22, 2009, 6:39 pm

    we love day old embutido it taste better and yeah fried embutido in butter is super delicious with pan de sal with a squirt of mafran banana ketchup, yummmm

    Reply
  • Lori Lynn @ Taste With The Eyes May 30, 2009, 10:08 am

    Looks so pretty, like stained glass. I have never added sugar to my meatloaf, very interesting. I bet it was delicious.
    LL

    Reply
  • Pat June 1, 2009, 9:48 am

    i don’t like regular meatloaf but embutido is yum!

    Reply
  • den June 6, 2009, 12:03 pm

    i miss eating imbutido. i would have to try this recipe later for dinner.very simple recipe marvin. Thanks for the post.

    Reply
  • Beth June 9, 2009, 7:22 pm

    I used to hate the raisins too. But now it’s okay with me and I understand its function in the dish. It provides a tinge of sweetness every once in a while. Some raisins = good. A lot of raisins = not so good. My mom puts some green peas in her embutido as well. And yeah, pan fried is the stuff.

    Reply
  • Burnt Lumpia June 10, 2009, 10:27 am

    Don’t feel cheated Julie, just make some for yourself;)
    Thanks very much Katalina. And I will definitely try frying my embutido next time.
    Thanks pulutan.
    Hi Lori Lynn. The touch of sugar I added was just for a hint of sweetness, I guess to make up for the lack of raisins.
    Embutido is yum indeed, Pat!
    Thanks den. It really isn’t that difficult to do.
    Thanks Beth. I guess I also now understand the role of raisins in embutido, but I still like to keep them out;)

    Reply
  • ivy July 8, 2009, 1:22 am

    we do it with raisins and quail eggs instead of chicken eggs

    Reply
  • greasemonkey July 19, 2009, 8:01 am

    hmm.. i thought i had posted before on this topic, must’ve dozed off..
    i wanted to tell you about our versions of meatloaf in marikina, embutido and everlasting.
    far from being leftover frankensteins or mystery meat meals, these 2 dishes are made from scratch. embutido, just as you made, are rolled into logs of foil wrapped porkiness while everlasting is first cooked in a pan and then plopped into a llanera (the aluminum/tin flat oval mold also used for leche flan) with some beaten eggs and steamed.
    let me know when you guys come over to this side of the pacific again, i’ll whip you up a batch and then some. =)

    Reply
  • The Philippine Island August 3, 2009, 1:50 pm

    It looks very delicious! Thank you for sharing this recipe. I’ll try to make it on my own.

    Reply
  • Heather September 22, 2009, 1:51 pm

    Are there advantages to steaming over baking? I don’t really have the proper items needed to steam. Does the finished product come out differently or look differently than the other depending on which you do? Thanks!

    Reply
  • amancia December 14, 2009, 8:25 pm

    this is my first attempt at one of your recipes, although i have been a fan for awhile. my mom is from cebu & dad is american. unfortunately my mom never whipped up one of these for us. my embutido’s just now came out of the oven and i can not wait to try them. i put raisins in one, but not in the other. can’t wait to taste it!

    Reply
  • u8mypinkcookies December 25, 2009, 9:31 pm

    love it w/ lotsa hotdogs and egg.

    Reply
  • Rob Poulos July 29, 2010, 4:32 pm

    That looks very unique and very tasty! Thanks for sharing the recipe! =)

    Reply
  • Moomin April 25, 2011, 5:46 am

    I made this for today for the first time. Its amazing! Cheers!

    Reply
  • Chef_aaaa December 30, 2011, 1:04 am

    Omg tis look delish…

    Reply
  • mhallare April 5, 2013, 4:08 pm

    a few years later…

    just placed this in the oven with a hungry family waiting… wish me luck and may the force be with me!

    Reply
  • kiezia July 8, 2013, 12:24 am

    I haven’t try this recipe, it looks delicious and tasty. I’m gonna try this at home, hopefully I can get the taste.hehehe. Thank you for sharing. :)

    Reply

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