Meat Loaf_rt_004


  • Serves 6
  • Takes 40 min to make, 45-50 min in the oven, plus standing and chilling
  • Easy
Simon Rimmer's meatloaf recipe, an American classic, is served with a rich onion and ale gravy.

Nutritional info per serving

  • Calories548kcals
  • Fat25g (9.2g saturated)
  • Protein46.8g
  • Carbohydrates37.3g (9.5g sugars)
  • Salt2.6g

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  • 200g bacon lardons
  • 200g soft white breadcrumbs
  • 1 large, free-range egg
  • 150ml milk
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • Pinch of dried thyme
  • Pinch of dried basil
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 100g celery, finely chopped
  • Handful fresh curly parsley,
  • finely chopped
  • 700g minced beef
  • 200g minced pork

For the sauce

  • 2 onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp demerara sugar
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 250ml beef stock, hot
  • 330ml ale
  • 1 tsp cornflour, combined with a little water to form a paste

To serve

  • Mashed potato
  • Steamed greens


  1. Cook the lardons in a dry frying pan over a medium heat until well browned and crispy. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon, drain on kitchen paper and set aside. Put the breadcrumbs in a large bowl. Beat the egg and milk together in a jug, then pour over the breadcrumbs. Leave to stand for 10 minutes.
  2. Stir in the mustard, dried herbs, nutmeg, onion, celery, parsley and cooked lardons. Add the minced meats, season and mix well. Pack the mixture into a 2kg loaf tin. Cover the whole tin with foil and chill for at least 4 hours or overnight to firm up.
  3. Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan160°C/gas 4. Take the loaf tin out of the fridge, uncover and press down firmly. Re-cover and cook in the oven for 45-50 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, make the sauce. Fry the onions, stirring, for about 5 minutes or until soft and golden. Sprinkle over the sugar and cook for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the garlic and tomato purée and cook for a further 5 minutes. Add the stock and ale, bring to the boil and bubble for about 6-7 minutes to reduce by a third. Finally, mix in the cornflour paste and simmer for 1 minute, stirring until thickened. Season to taste, then set aside and keep warm.
  5. Take the meatloaf out of the oven and leave to stand for 10 minutes before turning out of the tin and slicing. Serve with a good dollop of mash and some steamed greens, and the sauce poured over the top.
  • Grab a no-nonsense, fruity red. Try a Rhône Valley red such as Châteauneuf-du-Pape or a less expensive Côtes du Rhône Villages.

From May 2008

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