Please accept (in advance) my sincerest apologies to all the ‘Meatless Monday’ folk out there. I’m officially changing Mondays to ‘Meatloaf Mondays’ in honour of the humble but magnificent meatloaf. Previously I’ve always thought of meatloaf as an antiquated dish, or perhaps more accurately, ‘a classic’. As a result, I’ve maybe made meatloaf three times in my (almost 40) years on this earth and now…I have a lot of catching up to do!
The family loved this meatloaf so much the first time I made it that I had no hope in getting any photos. I served it as one would classically serve a meatloaf; with mashed potatoes and peas. And it was so so good. Everyone was excited about having meatloaf sandwiches for school lunches the next day…until they woke up and discovered that their older brother had already left for work for the day, taking the rest of the meatloaf with him. No bread, no veggies, just a solid chunk of meatloaf for lunch. If there ever was a candidate for the paleo diet, he would definitely be it.
I knew that no one would be complaining if I made meatloaf twice in one week so I bought more pork mince and leeks then had another meatloaf ready in no time. This time everyone was happy. I was able to take photos during the daylight hours and everyone brought meatloaf sandwiches for lunch today. I guess I’ve learned a bit of a lesson too…always make a double recipe of meatloaf!
Pork, Bacon, Leek, and Thyme Meatloaf
- 1.2 kg/2.6 pounds lean ground pork (pork mince)
- 1/2 cup panko crumbs or regular bread crumbs
- 6 slices of meaty bacon; finely diced
- 2 leeks; finely diced
- 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley; finely chopped
- 1 egg
- salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 325° F
Add the bacon to a skillet and cook until most of the fat has rendered out. Add the leeks on top of the bacon and cover with a lid to sweat them for about 5 minutes. Place the ground pork, crumbs, egg, thyme leaves, and diced parsley in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper. When the leeks have softened, add them (with the bacon) to the rest of the ingredients in the bowl and mix well.
Cover a baking sheet with aluminum foil and grab all the ingredients in a large ball. Place on baking sheet and mold into a loaf shape, just like if you were actually using a loaf pan. I find that baking the meatloaf on a baking pan decreases the amount of oil in your meatloaf. It doesn’t make the prettiest photos but I prefer to cook my meatloaf this way.