Thursday, June 18, 2015

Individual Meat Loaves a la Michael Symon

Watching The Chew the other day, Michael Symon made these little individual meat loaves, wrapped in bacon. As soon as I saw how easy they were, and then how much faster they bake (than a whole large meatloaf), I had to try them! The only step that takes any time at all is sauteing the onion, but I would do that anyway, as I really dislike crunching into undercooked onions in a meatloaf. It was already going on 3:45 PM when I came downstairs from my office yesterday. My husband likes his supper promptly at 5 PM, thank you.  I told him it might be a little later this evening.

Individual Bacon Wrapped Meat Loaf

I had thawed the meat earlier, so that was set. Michael Symon's recipe called for a pound of ground beef plus a half-pound each of ground pork and veal. I don't think they've heard of veal up here in these parts. I have never seen it. If they are going to raise cattle, by golly, they raise cattle! I used half and half beef and pork. I had bacon, thick sliced, which is the only kind I buy. I have been avoiding wheat and extraneous simple carbs, so I looked at the bread crumbs in his recipe and thought instead I would use psyllium husks. I keep them on hand for my daily dose of fiber anyway. Other than these changes, I pretty much followed his recipe.

They were most amazingly good! I was totally hooked. Of course I had not eaten meat for about 5 days, so maybe that helped them to taste so good, but I think the flavors were very hard to beat. Supposedly they were to be done at 35 minutes. The bacon on the outside, possibly because I used thick sliced, or possibly because on the show he said to set the oven at 400 degrees, where on the website they specified 375, was underdone at the 30 minute mark, so I increased the oven to 400 degrees and continued for 10 more minutes. If using thinner bacon, I am sure that may have been the case. Maybe next time (and there WILL be a next time!) I will just start out at 400 degrees and then they might be done at the 35 minute time.

There are really not a whole lot of things added to the meat; just simply onion and garlic, salt and pepper. The only other flavor additions are thyme leaves, which are visible in the photos, parsley and Worcestershire, and then the psyllium and an egg. Simple, easy and quick. While they baked, I made some mashed potatoes to contribute to my hubby's happiness, and supper was served, only 10 minutes late!

I will say, Michael divided the 2 pounds of meat into 6 portions. One of these portions was quite a bit more than I really wanted or needed in one sitting, though I certainly did it justice last night. I think I might make half of them this size for a manly portion, and the rest in smaller portions for me.

Just out of the oven - the house smelled heavenly

Individual Bacon Wrapped Meat Loaves

serves 6

1 pound ground beef
1 pound ground pork
2 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, chopped
2 - 4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, stripped from stems
2 tablespoons psyllium husks (can use 1/4 cup bread crumbs)
1 egg
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
2 teaspoons salt
pepper, to taste
12 strips bacon; more if making smaller portions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare a rimmed baking sheet by lining it with foil, for easy cleanup later. 

In a skillet, melt the butter over medium or medium low. Once butter is melted, add in the onions and saute until at least tender. I prefer them turning golden brown. Once nearing the point you prefer, add in the minced garlic and the thyme leaves. Stir and cook for another 3 to 5 minutes, until the rawness of the garlic is lessened. Allow this mixture to cool to just warm before adding to the remaining ingredients. 

Place the meats in a large bowl. Add in all the remaining ingredients except the bacon. Once cooled, add the onion mixture and stir to completely combine the ingredients. This can be done with hands or a spoon. Divide the mixture into 6 (or more) portions, as desired. Set two strips of bacon onto a surface, closely side by side. Make a ball of one of the portions of meat and set it towards one end of the bacon strips. Roll the bacon around the meat until the loose ends are underneath. Gently set the ball onto the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining bacon and meat portions. Bake the rolls for about 30 to 40 minutes, or until the bacon is done to your preference and the internal temperature of the meat is at least 155 degrees. 

My passion is to teach people how to create a harmony of flavors with their cooking, and help pass along my love and joy of food, both simple and exotic, plain or fancy. I continue my journey in ethnic and domestic cuisines, trying new things weekly. I would love to hear from you, to help me continue my journey to explore diverse culinary experiences and hopefully to start you on a journey of your own. Join me at A Harmony of Flavors Website and Marketplace, Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.