As many comfort foods as there are, you would think that there would be a uniform, accepted way of preparing each one. However, this fails to be the case.
For one minute, I'm going to name every comfort food I can think of. Ready. Go
Mac and Cheese
Green bean casserole
mashed potatoes with gravy
Chicken Noodle Soup
Fried Green Tomatoes
Au Gratin potatoes
Okay, that wasn't a lot. And clearly my Southern roots are showing. I should touch them up. I mean really, who would put fried green tomatoes on the list of comfort foods besides a true Southern belle. Ditto for creamed spinach.
Tonight I made a fantastic meatloaf. I had a rather difficult night last night and an equally difficult day, so the only real answer was meatloaf. And Caramel Praline Crunch ice cream, of which I am partaking at this moment. Praline. There's the Southern-girl-ness again.
Sorry, I got distracted. My house started so smell like heaven smells (or what I imagine Heaven to smell like) about 25 minutes into the cooking process. The reason for this is that I WRAPPED THE ENTIRE MEATLOAF IN BACON. Let me say that again in italics in case you missed it in caps.
I wrapped the entire meatloaf in bacon.
It was insanely good. As a result, the meatloaf was not only tender and savory (thanks to some fresh sage and another result of my being brought up by a Maryland native - Old Bay seasoning), but when i cut into it, all the juices and bacon fat just poured out like the most incredible waterfall you can even dream exists in the rainforests of Hawaii. Or the jungles of Hawaii. Whichever. Of course I saved the fat. My brother and I are going to be making a substantial pot of clam chowdah tomorrow, and the bacon fat will come in quite handy.
The juice alleviated the need that some meat loafs have to be drowned in ketchup in order to stay moist. A friend and I were discussing the the addition of ketchup to meatloaf this evening and agreed that a meatloaf should be prepared so as to not require ketchup, but that it is an acceptable addition if said meatloaf happens to be dry. I think that my meatloaf tonight was the exact opposite of dry. That being moist. To the point of incredibleness.
I even forgot the Lea and Perrins. I'm amazing sometimes. I mean all the time.