Would you believe this red meat freak doesn’t like ground beef? ‘Tis true. For lemony polpettine and other scrumptious meatballs, I prefer ground, organic chicken. And for meatloaves, I favor ground, organic turkey. Obviously I’m…weird.
You might think this turkey loaf is a little weird, but trust me — it’s dreamy-delicious. Besides the usual eggs and bread crumbs, I added shredded carrots, chopped parsley, sharp cheddar cheese, and fragrant Worcestershire sauce to the ground poultry. Then I topped the loaf with rich tomato paste and ribbons of sweet, smokey bacon.
Please wipe the drool from your chin.
Tip the turkey mixture into a lightly-greased 9×5 loaf pan, pack it down evenly, and then spread the top with one small (6-ounce) can of tomato paste. I prefer paste to ketchup because it has a rich, concentrated taste. It adheres well, too. Like delicious red glue.
Bake until the loaf is thoroughly cooked, and the bacon has browned appetizingly — about 60 minutes at 350°F. The poultry is done when a meat thermometer inserted into the center of the loaf reads 165°F. Tilt the pan to drain off some of the fat which has accumulated. Let rest for 5-10 minutes before cutting into thick slices.
And what fabulous slices they are! Dense but moist, and infused the flavors of herbs, carrots, and beautiful-beautiful Worcestershire. Serve with goblets of Pinot Noir, and such sides as steamed, un-peeled red tomatoes and shimmering leaves of lightly-oiled arugula.
And what about the bacon? Well, that belongs to the cook. You deserve it. All 3 slices.
Here, because I love you, is a printable version of the above:
Think you’ll try this loaf of love? You can let me know by leaving a comment. And if you’d like to be the first kid on the block to receive my recipes and gardening articles, be sure to get my email updates.