Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Everything's Better With Bacon

Bacon-Wrapped Meatloaf with Roasted Garlic Smashed Potatoes and Bacony Brussels Sprouts

Meatloaf is just one of those great comfort foods perfect for warm and fuzzy family dinners or (in my case tonight) friends and Scrabble. A moist and well-seasoned meatloaf is a great and hearty meal for meat-lovers and a sneaky way of slipping lots of vegetables onto the plate of a picky eater.

This recipe is a full dinner menu- complete with two easy and delicious side dishes. The roasted garlic addition to the mashed potatoes steps up a tried and true side dish to something a little more elegant and, in the case of the Brussels sprouts (as this blog title would indicate) . . . bacon just makes it better! The sides can also compliment other great dinners, try them with roast chicken or a pork loin.


- 1 lb. ground beef
- 2 slices of whole wheat bread, ground up in food processor into breadcrumbs
- 3 carrots, peeled and minced
- 3 sticks celery, trimmed and minced
- 1 large onion, peeled and minced
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 1 Tbsp. grill seasoning
- 1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. pepper
- 1 Tbsp. ketchup
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 c. barbecue sauce plus 1 Tbsp.
- 8 slices bacon
- 1 head garlic
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 lb. russet potatoes, scrubbed clean and quartered
- 2 Tbsp. half and half
- 2 Tbsp. butter
- fresh chives, minced
- 1 lb. brussels sprouts, trimmed
- 3 slices bacon, diced
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tsp. dried Herbs d' Provence

In a large mixing bowl combine ground beef, bread crumbs, ketchup, 1 Tbsp. barbecue sauce, celery, carrots, onion, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, egg, grill seasoning, and salt and pepper. I find that the best way to combine meatloaf ingredients is with your bare hards. Work the mixture until all the ingredients are well combined. Transfer mixture to an 13" oval or rectangular baking dish and shape it into a 10x4" loaf shape. Brush loaf with half of the 1/4 c. of barbecue sauce, then wrap loaf in eight strips of bacon laying them lengthwise across. Brush bacon layer with remaining barbecue sauce. Place loaf pan into a preheated 350˚ oven and bake 40-50 minutes until meat is cooked through.

While meatloaf is baking, take head of garlic and trim top 1/2" away to expose individual cloves, place in a small sheet of foil, drizzle with 1 Tbsp. olive oil, and sprinkle with salt. Wrap head of garlic in foil and then place in oven on rack beside meat loaf pan. Roast garlic about 30 minutes, remove from oven, and allow to cool before handling.

While garlic is roasting, scrub and quarter potatoes (leave skins on), trim brussles sprouts, chop chives, dice bacon, and bring two medium heavy sauce pots of water to a boil. Place potatoes in boiling water and cook until they are soft enough to pierce easily with the tip of a knife (about 12-15 minutes). Drain potatoes and return to pot, add half and half, butter, chives, salt and pepper, and squeeze roasted garlic cloves from their skins into mixture. Whip potatoes with a hand-held mixer until creamy, add more salt and pepper to taste. Cover to keep warm.
When meatloaf is cooked through, remove from oven, cover with foil, and allow to rest about 10 minutes before cutting.

While meatloaf is resting, blanch brussles sprouts in boiling water until slightly softened and bright green (2-3 minutes). Drain. While sprouts are blanching, cook diced bacon in a medium skillet over medium heat until it begins to brown. Remove bacon from skillet and allow to drain on a paper towel-lined plate, reserve 2 Tbsp. rendered bacon fat in pan. Return pan to medium heat, add sprouts, and cook 3-4 minutes until softened. Season with salt and pepper and Herbs de Provence. Remove from heat and toss with diced, cooked bacon.

That's it! While not a lightening-fast dinner in 30 minutes, it's easy enough to put it all together in about an hour . . . not too shabby. Serve it all together! What a lovely plate. Serve potatoes with extra butter and try the meatloaf with either ketchup or barbecue sauce as a topping. It's quite tasty and really filling. I think you'll like it.

No comments:

Post a Comment