Open-Faced, Crispy-Fried Meatloaf Patty Sandwich, As Beautifully Vulnerable As An Open Soul

Open-Faced Meatloaf Patty Sandwich

There’s a delectable allure to an open-faced sandwich, don’t you think?

It rests on the plate, there in its full glory, proudly showcasing the mouthwatering ingredients that it is comprised of; and in the case of a soul-comforting, open-faced meatloaf sandwich, those enticing morsels are the thick, crusty bread that the fluffy and creamy mashed potatoes are piled on top of, with the crowing jewel being the succulent and juicy, crispy-fried meatloaf patty that has been glossed with a flowing little river of gravy and a few scattered, earthy mushrooms.

Open-Faced Meatloaf Patty Sandwich

Open-Faced Meatloaf Patty Sandwich

Ah, what a sight for the eyes of someone with an appetite to behold!

An open-faced meatloaf sandwich carefully placed down on the table in front of a hungry soul stirs up the interest and the desire of that soul, and engages the senses through it’s very openness—it’s “availability”—and creates a complete and intentional experience for the one about to bite in. There’s a sort of vulnerability there, an honest display of what is happening on the inside, not obscured at all by a piece of bread on top.

The open-faced sandwich is special; there’s a beauty in what it’s willing to reveal, which is everything.

And it reminds me a bit of how beautifully vulnerable our own souls are when we are willing to bare them, and share them with one another in order to elicit the compassion that lies within us, as well as that appetite for connection.

Open-Faced Meatloaf Patty Sandwich

My husband and I belong to a wonderful group that gets together for about an hour and a half prior to our church service each week. Our group has been together for about a year now, and the openness that has developed between us as we share our stories and our spiritual journeys with one another is amazing and inspiring to witness; we’re also discovering that it is incredibly therapeutic to our spirits, as well.

A member of our group, and a dear friend of ours, shared with all of us this past weekend that she had made the decision to quite smoking after being a life-long, two-pack-a-day smoker. She had never previously spoken openly about her struggle with smoking and how she had already tried to quit numerous times, but now felt the desire to open her soul and ask each of us to help her along by keeping her in our thoughts and prayers.

Open-Faced Meatloaf Patty Sandwich

She had also shared with the group that the few people she had already confided in about this a few days earlier, had been offering her incredible support and encouragement through their positive text messages that were filled with kind words and heart-felt prayers for her peace, success and comfort as she embarked on this very challenging and even physically painful process.

Our friend described how difficult her previous attempts at quitting were, but that this time, she wanted to try a new approach. She wanted to become vulnerable and share what she was going through and not keep it to herself; to engage us, her friends, in hopes that this would be the final, successful attempt, in large part, because of the very support and love that each of us could bring to her.

And though each day not smoking has been extremely difficult for her, she is doing wonderfully, taking all of our hopes and desires for her success and using them to strengthen herself and bask in the glow of our love and care for her. She explained to us that she had never felt as much power and ability to put this habit behind her as she did this time around, and it was because she chose to be vulnerable, open and receptive to what each of us are willing to provide her with, which is our connection, compassion and desire for her well-being—the prayers of our hearts.

Open-Faced Meatloaf Patty Sandwich

It is not easy for most of us to be vulnerable and open about what is happening in our lives, or to communicate what we need from one another. It is difficult to put on display all that we have within us for others to see in full view. I understand this on a personal level.

But when we do decide to be courageous and reveal what we have inside, we give opportunity to those around us to rise to the occasion of being involved in our life, activating their desire to be compassionate and encouraging, which is so much a part of what bonds and strengthens us as human beings.

Open-Faced Meatloaf Patty Sandwich

When we choose to open ourselves up and put on display all of the “ingredients” that we contain within us—those ingredients that make up who we are and what we’re all about—then we entice those around us to partake in our life, and enjoy the flavor of who we are and who we will one day be.

We become like that comfortingly delicious open-faced, crispy-fried meatloaf patty sandwich, fully showcasing what we are made up of, in order to engage and entice others to participate in our life experience with us.

And, somehow, divinely, that ends up feeding everyone involved.

Taste what’s good and pass it on.


{ 9 comments… add one }

  • Wendy April 19, 2014, 9:50 am

    This is a wonderful sandwich! Real comfort food. I particulary like the panko coating. We love the gravy also! thanks for sharing.

  • Gail April 24, 2014, 7:05 pm

    Vulnerability is difficult, but vitally important. How great that you have a group that cares about each other. That is a gift to be treasured!

  • The Cozy Apron April 25, 2014, 4:58 pm

    Yes, so true, Gail! Thank you of commenting.

  • Marie December 23, 2014, 9:22 pm

    Made this for dinner tonight – absolutely fantastic!! Thank you for sharing!

    • The Cozy Apron December 24, 2014, 5:37 am

      Marie, that’s fantastic! So glad you enjoyed this recipe, and thanks for taking a moment to share your experience!

  • hifigator February 4, 2015, 3:53 pm

    I’m down visiting my mom right now, and even though I’m a very good cook, and aspiring chef in the making, we’re pretty much forced to make meals from what we have on hand, due to monetary constraints. Ok, you get the gist. In any case, yes I can cook great food with high end ingredients, and amazingly good food with almost nothing. But there is a noticeable gap there ‘somewhere.’ I want to make my mom something great, with good but limited supplies. We have the protein, in the firm of half a loaf of meatloaf. And we have ‘crusty’ French bread … ok … stale, French bread. And some leftover gravy as well. Any tips on elevating my own faced meatloaf sandwich to make it awesome, rather than just very good? Last question: any comment on flash flying the already cooked meatloaf slices, and if so, any specifics? Thanks

    • The Cozy Apron February 4, 2015, 4:53 pm

      Hi there, thanks so much for your question! You seem to have the basic components for this open-faced meatloaf sandwich; you asked about frying the already cooked meatloaf slices, and I think that’d be great! Why not? I think skip the breadcrumbs/panko; it would take too long to get ’em brown & crispy, and may make the slices tough since they’re cooked. So just add a little oil to a pan, get it hot, and add a slice or two. Let it brown up on the first side and flip, then repeat. And perhaps to “revive” the stale French bread, slice it and toast it up a bit and then spread some butter on it for added flavor; then it’s “toasted”, not stale. You’ve got some gravy, which is great; any potatoes? If not, you sound like you’re creative, so just take a peak and see if you have something to dress it up. Hope that helps some!

      • The Cozy Apron February 4, 2015, 5:06 pm

        One more idea: if you have onions on hand, those would be a great addition if you sliced one into semi-circles and caramelized them in butter or oil until golden-brown and slightly sweet, then added them on top.

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