Last night I was not feeling super motivated to cook supper. (PS- it’s only called supper on Sundays. The rest of the week it’s just referred to as dinner.) I wound up leafing through the most recent issue of Bon Appetit looking for some inspiration and found recipes for parsnip and Brussels sprouts side dishes and since I happened to have both on hand (and also love both) the meal was starting to take shape. (Check back later in the week for the side dishes.) But what to do for a main course?
A few weeks ago when I was home my dad sent me back with a cooler full of beef from his farm. Grass-fed goodness right there in my freezer. I’m not even a big meat-eater but this is definitely the way forward if you’re going to partake.
I started researching meatloaf recipes because that is always a great way to stretch out a small amount of meat into a proper dish. Problem is now that I am off the wheat I was having a hard time finding a recipe that didn’t involve breadcrumbs and then I found not one but two recipes where oatmeal was substituted for breadcrumbs. Eureka! Better yet the recipe I landed on had lots going on in it including prunes and bacon. Sold!
This loaf is moist and a little salty with a touch of sweet and I dare say it’s the best meatloaf I’ve ever had in my life and my dining companion (who doesn’t hand out compliments freely) agreed completely. The perfect main dish for a Sunday supper.
Meatloaf (adapted loosely from Gourmet magazine recipe from 2008 found at www.epicurious.com)
- 1 cup rolled oats
- ½ cup whole milk
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 medium celery rib, finely chopped
- 1 medium carrot, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
- ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
- ¼ pound bacon (about 4 slices), chopped
- ½ cup pitted prunes, chopped
- 1 ½ pounds ground beef chuck
- ½ pound ground pork (not lean)
- 2 large eggs
Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle.
Soak oats in milk in a large bowl.
Meanwhile, cook onion, garlic, celery, and carrot in butter in a large heavy skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Cover skillet and reduce heat to low, then cook until carrot is tender, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, allspice, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper. Add to oat mixture.
Finely chop bacon and prunes in a food processor, then add to onion mixture along with beef, pork, and eggs and mix together with your hands.
Pack mixture into a 9- by 5-inch oval loaf in a 13- by 9-inch shallow baking dish or pan.
Bake until an instant-read thermometer inserted into center of meatloaf registers 155°F, 1 to 1 1/4 hours. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
Cooked meatloaf keeps, chilled, 3 days.