“There’s nothing more comforting than a gorgeous meatloaf made with top-quality meat, lightened up with festive flavours. It’s a delicious, easy way to feed a big group of people. And when it comes out in a big tray it looks amazing, too. ”
- 4 medium bulbs of fennel
- olive oil
- 2 onions
- 2 carrots
- ½ a bunch of fresh sage (15g)
- ½ a bunch of fresh rosemary (15g)
- 1 x 125 g ball of mozzarella cheese
- 200 g sourdough breadcrumbs
- 1 kg higher-welfare minced pork
- 1 kg minced beef
- 2 teaspoons wholegrain mustard
- 2 large free-range eggs
- 12 rashers of higher-welfare smoked streaky bacon
- 500 ml organic chicken stock
- 2 tablespoons quality blackcurrant jam
- 1 tablespoon sun-dried tomato purée
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas 4.
- Trim each fennel bulb and chop into eight wedges, then place in a large roasting tray, drizzle with oil, season with sea salt and black pepper and roast for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, peel and dice the onions and carrots, place in a large pan with 1 tablespoon of oil on a medium-low heat and cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Pick the herb leaves, finely chop half of them and add to the veg pan, saving the rest for later.
- Leave the veg to cool completely, then tear in the mozzarella and add the breadcrumbs, minced meat, mustard, eggs, and a good pinch of sea salt and black pepper. Scrunch and mix well, then shape into a loaf.
- Make a space in the middle of the fennel tray and sit the meatloaf in the centre. Criss-cross the smoky bacon over the meatloaf, drizzle with a little oil, then cover the tray with tin foil.
- Roast for 30 minutes, then remove from the oven and discard the foil.
- Mix the chicken stock, jam and tomato purée together in a jug until smooth, then pour into the tray. Toss the reserved herbs with a little oil and scatter into the tray, then return to the oven for a final 45 minutes, or until cooked through.
- If the juices need thickening at this stage, simply put the tray on the hob to reduce for a few minutes, until they’re the consistency of your liking, skimming away any fat from the surface, if needed.
- Serve the meatloaf, sweet fennel and juices with mash and seasonal greens.
Source: Jamie Oliver