For the meat loaf: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 5 by 9 inch pan with nonstick spray. In a saute pan, add bacon fat or butter, onion and garlic, and cook over medium heat, until onion has softened, about 5 minutes. Take care not to carmelize the onions. Remove from pan and reserve. In a large bowl, combine the remaining ingredients except the meat. Let sit for 5 minutes, which allows the crumbs to absorb the wet mix and soften, preventing the loaf from cracking. Add the meat and onion mixture to the bowl and mix by hand until well combined. Transfer the mixture to the greased loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes, rotating the pan half way through the cooking time. Let cool before unmolding.
For the gravy: In a large shallow saute pan over medium low heat, cook bacon with 1 tbsp. butter, the olive oil, shallot, garlic, and thyme. Add white wine, bring to a simmer and reduce for about 4 to 5 minutes to cook off the alcohol. Add the chicken stock and reduce by half. Stir in the remaining tbsp. butter and serve over the meatloaf. Serves: 6-8 Total time: 1 1/2 hours
We made this last night.
The meatloaf was good, nothing extraordinary, but the GRAVY is what made this recipe a winner! We used a “real” smoked applewood bacon (as opposed to a “sprayed on” hickory flavoring).
We doubled the recipe, and kind of eyeballed some of the ingredients (i.e. 2 eggs instead of 4, a little less milk than called for, cut the garlic in half, used poultry seasoning instead of some of the herbs called for).
One mistake we made was doing a single recipe of the gravy, because we had no idea how good it would be!
Even though we simmered it down, it was still a little thin for our taste, so we made a slurry out of cornstarch and water and thickened it up a bit.
This gravy will make it’s appearance again and again in our house!
I was born in the Redwood Country of Northern California. An honor student in high school, I turned down a full tuition scholarship to Humboldt State University to marry at age seventeen and go on to have three children in the next five years.
I’ve never forgotten that starry-eyed girl who dreamed of becoming a newspaper journalist. I settled for an AA in Sociology and a minor in Business from College of the Redwoods and eventually found a career in telecom. Starting as a telephone operator and working my way up to a management position in purchasing with a large independent telephone company, I assumed I would work there until I retired or was found slumped over dead in my office chair.
Life, however, often takes you on paths you never dreamed you’d travel. My husband had a stroke in 2005 and we found ourselves becoming a multi-generational family, moving 160 miles away and in with our younger son, his wife and two grandchildren.