How do you improve on a huge lump of meat? Weave it a coat of other meat to keep it happy in the oven. The lattice of bacon not only adds to the flavour and gives it a nice crispy texture, but helps the loaf keep its shape whilst cooking. If you’re not quite so excited about bacon you could just put a layer over, or put it in a loaf tin and put bacon on the top. I suppose you could leave the bacon out altogether, but the mince tends to get a bit tough on the outside if baked on its own.
Paleo meatloaf is a bit of a challenge, because normal meatloaf uses breadcrumbs to keep it moist and hold it together. Nothing paleo really does the trick (that I’ve discovered so far…), and your options either seem to be 1) to add nothing, and end up with a very solid piece of meat or 2) add ground almonds which keeps it moist and light, but means it has a tendency to fall apart a bit. I go for option 2, because it’s going to end up in pieces anyway!
Ingredients serves about 3 people. Or 2, with leftovers for breakfast!
400g beef mince
3 tbsp ground almonds
1 tbsp chopped parsley
Salt & pepper
Finely dice you onion and gently sweat in a bit of ghee or olive oil. Whilst you’re waiting for it to finish, add all other ingredients except bacon into a large bowl.
When the onion is soft and a bit translucent, add to the rest of the ingredients. If you’re as clever as me, you’ll put your hand on the onion that’s just come out of a hot frying pan and burn yourself. I recommend either patience or a spoon.
When it’s all nicely mixed, plonk it onto a baking tray and shape into a loaf shape. Weave your bacon lattice, leaving a bit of extra bacon at the ends. When you’re done, tuck the ends underneath and gently reshape if necessary. Don’t worry if there are a few gaps, it’ll be fine as long as most of it’s covered! If you’re just doing a single bacon layer bear in mind that it will shrink a bit when cooked, so you might want to overlap slightly.
Bake at 180 for 30 minutes, then change to a hot grill for a final 5 minutes to crisp up the bacon. Gently slice, and eat the leftovers for a spectacular breakfast!