Meatloaf is a simple comfort food that always reminds me of my childhood. It has never been my favorite for dinner and I usually prefer it the next day sandwiched between two pieces of bread. This recipe however takes a twist in flavors and I really enjoy it for dinner. Ground pork, beef and prunes give a delicious twist to a classic recipe. The prunes add a hint of sweetness that compliments the savory flavors and Worcestershire, vinegar and spices bring out complex flavors that will make this one of your favorite meatloaf recipes.
I don’t place my meatloaf in a loaf pan. Instead I free-form it in a casserole dish so it forms a crust all over instead of just the top. This meatloaf will cook off quite a bit of fat and juices so you may want to place it on a rack to sit above the juices as it cooks.
- 1 cup fresh bread crumbs
- ½ cup whole milk
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 medium celery rib, finely chopped
- 1 medium carrot, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
- ½ teaspoon ground allspice
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 teaspoons pepper
- 6 slices of bacon
- 1/3 cup pitted prunes
- 1 ½ pounds ground beef chuck
- ½ pound ground pork
- 2 large eggs
- 1/3 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
- Preheat the oven to 350°
- Place the bread crumbs and milk in a large mixing bowl. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat then add the onion, garlic, celery and carrot. Place a lid on the pan and cook for 8 to 10 minutes until tender. Remove from heat and stir in Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, allspice, salt, and pepper. Add this mixture to the breadcrumb mixture in the mixing bowl and stir well.
- Place the prunes and bacon in a food processor fitted with a chopping blade and process until finely chopped and the mixture forms a mass. Add to the bread crumb/onion mixture then stir in the beef, pork, eggs and parsley.
- Place the mixture in a 13 by 9 inch baking dish and form it into a 9 by 5 inch loaf shape.
- Bake for 60 to 75 minutes or until a meat thermometer registers 155°.
- Let rest for 10 minutes then carefully drain off the liquid and fat that formed while cooking.