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Dining In — Recipe of the Week: Meatloaf is the ultimate in comfort food

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Father’s Day is almost here, and possibilities for celebrating are brighter than they were for Mother’s Day.

Families can book tables for outdoor restaurant dining or gather at home in larger numbers thanks to Bucks County’s moving to the yellow phase in combating the COVID-19 virus.

If you opt to stay at home you can have food delivered, including the Grill at Home Kits offered by Solstice restaurant in Newtown that offer a selection of steaks ready to cook along with prepared side dishes. For information see bbot.menu/solsticenewtowndeliveryorpickup/

If the dad in your life prefers to choose his own entrée for grilling, the options are large, including fish, seitan, chicken, burgers, sausages and vegetables. If a Father’s Day brunch works better for family scheduling, think past the usual bacon and eggs and consider making a breakfast casserole with fresh fruit, fried potatoes, or biscuits as side dishes.

Children can help with a special dish or assist in baking favorite cookies or dessert.

Meatloaf is often a favorite for dads, and this recipe from bonappetit.com ratchets it up a notch with a layer of bacon for a hearty dinner on Father’s Day or any time.

BA’s Best Beef-and-Bacon Meatloaf

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 onion, grated on large holes of a box grater

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

¾ cup ketchup

¼ cup apple cider vinegar

3 tablespoons dark brown sugar

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

¾ cup low-sodium chicken broth

½ cup chopped fresh parsley

2 large eggs

⅔ cup fine breadcrumbs

½ cup finely grated Parmesan

1 tablespoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 pounds ground beef chuck (15 percent fat)

6 thin strips bacon

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil, then parchment paper.

Heat oil over medium in a small skillet. Cook onion and garlic, stirring occasionally, until very soft, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl.

Meanwhile, bring ketchup, vinegar, brown sugar, and cayenne to a boil in a small saucepan, reduce heat, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until slightly reduced and syrupy, about 5 minutes. Transfer 2 tablespoons ketchup mixture to a blender; add broth and parsley and blend until smooth. Set remaining ketchup mixture aside.

Add broth mixture, eggs, breadcrumbs, Parmesan, salt, and pepper to onion and garlic; mix to combine. Add beef and mix well with your hands to combine. Transfer meatloaf mixture to prepared pan and form into a long log (about 12x5 inches), smoothing surface. Spread reserved ketchup mixture over top and drape bacon in a crisscross pattern over loaf, tucking underneath.

Bake until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center registers 165°F and bacon is crisp, 70 to 80 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before slicing.


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