Dry breadcrumbs or panko are good in meatloaves, but my favorite is absolutely stale bread soaked in milk. I do the same thing with meatballs. Suggested side: Spinach Salad with Dijon Dressing.
- 5 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons EVOO
- 2 ribs celery, finely chopped
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- Kosher salt and pepper
- 1/2 cup lager beer, at room temperature
- 2 thick slices white bread, crusts trimmed
- 1 cup milk
- 2 pounds ground turkey (white and dark meat blend)
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh thyme
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
- 1/2 cup shredded sharp white cheddar cheese
- 1/2 pound smoky slab bacon, sliced (have the butcher slice it on the thin side)
- Chicken stock, for reheating (optional)
Position the oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
In a saucepan, cover 4 of the eggs with water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Cover the pot, remove from heat, and let stand 10 minutes. Crack the shells and soak a few minutes in ice water, then peel and dry on paper towels.
In a skillet, heat the EVOO (2 turns of the pan) over medium-high heat. Add the celery, onion, and garlic, season with salt and pepper, and cook to soften, 7 to 8 minutes. Deglaze the pan with the beer. Let cool completely.
Soak the bread in the milk.
In a large bowl, combine the turkey and thyme; season with salt and pepper. Squeeze out the milk from the bread and pull it into fine crumbles it as you add it to the meat. Add the Worcestershire, blue cheese, cheddar, cooled vegetables, and the remaining egg, and mix gently to combine.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Use half the meat to shape a 10 by 4-inch rectangle on the baking sheet. Make a row of the hard-boiled eggs down the center of the loaf, end to end. Top with the remaining meat and form it into a loaf. Coat the meatloaf with overlapping strips of bacon.
Make-ahead: If you will be baking the meatloaf within 24 hours of assembling, wrap the unbaked loaf and refrigerate. Otherwise, continue with the baking as described.
Bake the loaf for 1 hour. Turn on the broiler and brown the bacon top until crisp.
Make-ahead: Cool, cover, and refrigerate.
Night of: Slice off just what you need from the baked meatloaf and reheat in a little chicken stock on the stovetop or covered in a 350°F oven.