I have fallen in love with the butcher section at the chinese supermarket I go to. They have the most amazing american pork ribs that are at least $2/kg cheaper than I can find them anywhere else in the central market.
Last weekend when I was in there stocking up on ribs for a Fette Sau inspired meal, I spied some nice looking pork mince and grabbed a kilo. I had plenty of ideas on what to do with it but it ended up turned into Sunday night meatloaf.
I mixed in apple and fennel to give it good flavour and used quinoa in place of breadcrumbs.
It was good. Served up with some veg it was a perfect make ahead alternative to roast with easily enough for 2 meals for a family of 4 or enough left for lunches.
Pork, Fennel & Apple Meatloaf - Serves 8-10
1kg Good Quality Pork Mince
1 Smallish Fennel bulb
1 Large Apple (I used a Pink Lady, A Granny would be a good choice too)
2/3 Cup Quinoa
1 Tbs Fresh Sage or Thyme
1/2 tsp Fennel Seeds
Freshly Ground Pepper & Salt to Taste
Rinse and cook the quinoa then spread it out and leave it to cool. You will have about 2 cups.
Preheat your oven to 180C
Grate the fennel and apple and pop it in a large mixing bowl.
Add the pork mince, cooked and cooled quinoa, fresh and dried herbs and eggs. Season with salt and pepper.
Mix everything together and tip into 1 large or 2 smaller loaf tins that you have brushed with some olive oil.
Pop into the oven and cook until cooked through. Your cooking time will vary depending on the size and shape of your loaf tin. Make sure you time things to give yourself a bit of extra time to slice the meatloaf and lay the slices on a tray for a last blast of cooking if needed.
I made an apple cider reduction to serve with the meatloaf. I finely chopped a small onion and cooked it in a small saucepan with a knob of butter until caramelised. Next, I added 2 cups of apple cider and reduced it by half before serving with the meatloaf.
I served the meatloaf with some simple vegetables. We had baked sweet potato mash together with roasted broccoli and parsnips but feel free to cook up whatever vegetables work for you.
It was a winner all around.