bacon and gruyere meatloaf

 

some of the the workhorses

unfortunately, meatloaf isn’t particularly photographable. however, it is extremely edible. lucky for you, the ingredient prep turned out looking prettier than the finished dish. though i included a photo of the loaf before i stuck it into the oven, don’t let it fool you: this modest loaf was no ordinary loaf.

MOM- YOU NEED TO STEAL THIS RECIPE. it has long been of my mother’s opinion that her meatloaf… well, she thinks it sucks. i can’t really remember what it tastes like and i’m sure it doesn’t suck. but i promise, this one is THE ONE. to those loaf-a-phobics out there: take this recipe and run with it. make it yours. tell everyone it is your family’s secret recipe.

normally, i don’t follow a “real” recipe for.. well.. anything. i find variation and experimentation to be exhilarating, and it satisfies some reckless behaviors i possess in the kitchen.

but when i spotted this recipe in real simple magazine, i knew by the title: bacon & gruyere meatloaf, i must make this divine dish, and i will keep from complicating it with my variations.

well, i did make a few adjustments, but only because the recipe called for a quarter cup of breadcrumbs, and i don’t eat those. also, i had a bunch of herbs i wanted to use up, so i threw them in.

the results of my “sticking with the recipe” trial? i’m so glad i did. i am so glad i followed this recipe. gruyere and bacon are priceless ingredients in any kitchen. worth their weight in gold, really. they lended smoky, salty quality to the flavor. the gruyere on top browns and sets up perfectly, forming a perfectly thick crust on top. and no, you can not taste the ketchup in this dish. it is just enough to slightly sweeten it, give it a little acidity, and a lot of moisture. i would gladly serve this dish at any social gathering, potluck, or  just as easily make it for a quick family dinner. it would be super easy to make this the night before needed, and throw it into the oven an hour before dinner time. this came together really quickly.

*notes:

i had my favorite deli guy slice off my 4 oz chunk of gruyere so i didn’t have to buy a 10 oz block.

you could use breadcrumbs in this recipe if you wish, but i don’t find them to be necessary. i used flax meal to soak up some moisture.

i graded the onions in my food processor and then drained them, but i am sure you could do this by hand if you so wish. separately, i also shredded the cheese in the food processor.

i am including my adjustments to this recipe, though the original can be found at real simple.

bacon & gruyere meatloaf

before it bakes

serves 4

ingredients:

1 1/2 lb ground chuck

1/4 cup ketchup

3 tbsp flax meal

1 graded onion, drained

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 tbsp finely chopped rosemary

3 slices bacon

1 egg, beaten

4 oz gruyere cheese, shredded

3/4 tbsp salt

good shake of coarsley ground pepper

method:

preheat oven to 400f.

with bare, clean hands, combine all ingredients, except for 1/3 cup of the cheese, in a very large bowl. smash, smoosh, pretend the meat is the kid who bullied you in middle school. do this for 5 minutes or so.

pat it all into your loaf pan, kinda tight so you don’t have gaps.

top with remaining cheese, decorate it with some more fresh rosemary if you wish.

bake for 45 minutes, turning once after 20 minutes so the cheese browns evenly.

use baster to suck up the excess liquid, or carefully pour it out. let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

ok, one photo of the loaf, after i sliced it. -just wanted to show off the cheese!

we served it with sauteed kale

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