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Stout and Cheddar Meatloaf

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Serves 8

  • by Allison Ehri Kreitler from Fine Cooking
    Issue 109

With an infusion of hearty, bitter stout and sharp Cheddar, this meatloaf would be right at home at a St. Patrick's Day dinner. Create your own customized meatloaf recipe with the Recipe Maker.

  • 2 Tbs. plus 1 tsp. canola or olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup small-diced carrots
  • 1/2 cup small-diced celery
  • 2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup stout beer, such as Guinness
  • 4 oz. medium-coarse white bread, such as Italian or French, cut into 2-inch pieces (about 2-1/2 cups)
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 lb. ground veal
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup grated Cheddar
  • 1/4 cup dried mushrooms, rehydrated in hot water and chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce
  • Kosher Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 10 oz. sliced bacon (about 9 strips)

Heat 2 Tbs. of the oil in a 10- to 12-inch skillet over medium-low heat. Cook the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic, stirring frequently, until softened and just beginning to brown, 6 to 8 minutes.

Add the stout, and simmer briskly, until almost dry, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool until warm.

In a shallow dish that holds it in a single layer, soak the bread in the milk, flipping once, until soggy but not falling apart, 5 to 10 minutes, depending on the coarseness and freshness of the bread. Lightly squeeze a handful of bread at a time to remove some of the milk (it should be wet but not drenched). Finely chop and add to the bowl with the vegetable mixture.

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 375°F.

Add the beef, veal and eggs to the onion mixture. Scatter the Cheddar, rehydrated mushrooms, and parsley over the meat, and then sprinkle with the Worcestershire, 2-1/4 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Use your hands to gently mix all the ingredients until just combined; try not to compact the mixture as you do this.

Heat the remaining 1 tsp. of oil in a small skillet over medium-low heat. Form 1 Tbs. of the meatloaf mixture into a small patty. When the oil is hot, cook the patty on both sides until cooked through, about 5 minutes total. Transfer to a plate and let cool slightly. Taste and adjust the salt, pepper, and other seasonings as needed. Repeat until you're satisfied with the flavor.

Line a 9x13-inch baking pan with parchment. Transfer the meatloaf mixture to the baking pan and form into a 10x4-inch rectangular block (it becomes loaf-shaped as it cooks). Finish the meatloaf by draping it with slightly overlapping strips of bacon, tucking the ends under the loaf.

Bake until an instant-read thermometer registers 160°F in the center of the meatloaf, 40 to 55 minutes.

Broil the meatloaf about 6 inches from the broiler element until the bacon is brown and crisped, about 3 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board or serving platter with a large spatula and cut into 3/4- to 1-inch-thick slices.

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 390; Fat (g): 23; Fat Calories (kcal): 210; Saturated Fat (g): 8; Protein (g): 32; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 10; Carbohydrates (g): 12; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 2.5; Sodium (mg): 840; Cholesterol (mg): 155; Fiber (g): 1;

Photo: Scott Phillips

Concur with other reviewers--this is pretty much the Platonic ideal of meatloaf!

I liked this recipe a LOT - made it for me & my 8 year old and even SHE liked it :) The only thing I would change is not as much salt. Other than that, I made it without the bacon to keep the fat content down - but it was still super moist and delicious...

This opinion is from a writer who has not ever cared for any meatloaf. My husband really likes them and so I keep trying for one I can at least tolerate. Well, my search has ended. We both think this meatloaf outstanding! Neither too dry or soggy and a very up scale flavor!!!! it is the quintessential meatloaf!

Takes a little bit to measure and chop, but what a treat! Meatloaf never got this kind of reception in our house. This and a couple others in the 'Make your own Meatloaf' article have got meatloaf on the agenda on a regular basis. The Stout and Cheddar is a nice combination. Followed this exactly, except I had to run the broiler for a bit. I used a thicker cut of bacon and it took a bit of extra heat to brown the bacon nicely. Great stuff!

Was a little bit time consuming, but well worth it! The best meatloaf I've ever had.

This is fabulous. Don't change a thing. My husband, who is a meatloaf fanatic, says it's the best meatloaf he's ever had.

Great recipe! Meatloaf shouldn't be made any other way.

This is the best meatloaf that I have ever made and was worth every bit of extra effort required by this recipe--no tweaking necessary. Trying some of the other combinations from the meatloaf article will be a hard decision considering how much I would like to make this one again!

Made this tonight and it was awesome. Followed the recipe to the letter except didn't use the parsley. The kids loved it, and my husband, who HATES meatloaf, raved about it. Since I have the mushrooms and the beer, I'm going to make another and put it in the freezer. Great recipe!

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