Auvergne-Style Meat Loaf
This dense, savory meat loaf, usually a main course, is studded with sweet prunes.
Yield: serves 10
- 2 1"-thick slices white country bread (about 5 oz.), cut into chunks
- 1 1⁄4 cups milk
- 9 strips smoked bacon (6 oz.), cut into 1⁄2" pieces
- 1⁄2 onion, roughly chopped
- 1 1⁄2 tsp. kosher salt
- 3⁄4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- 6 oz. pancetta, cut into 1⁄2" x 1⁄4" pieces
- 4 oz. ground pork shoulder or belly
- 1⁄4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves
- 2 tbsp. chopped chives
- 1 egg
- 1 cup flour
- 40 pitted prunes (about 12 oz.)
- Heat oven to 400°. Combine bread and milk in a bowl; set aside to let soak for 10 minutes. Grease an 8" x 8" baking pan; set aside.
- Meanwhile, cook bacon in a 10" skillet over medium heat, stirring frequently, until it has rendered its fat, about 8 minutes. Add onions, salt, and pepper and cook until softened, about 15 minutes.
- In a food processor, process bread–milk mixture, bacon–onion mixture, pancetta, pork, parsley, chives, and egg to a fine paste. Add flour; pulse until combined. Scrape into a bowl; fold in prunes.
- Transfer mixture to the prepared pan, smooth top with rubber spatula, and cover with foil. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil; continue to bake until lightly browned and a knife inserted into center comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Let pan cool on a rack for 15 minutes. Cut into 1"-thick slices and serve.