In most dishes we prefer lean ground venison, but there are a few things that really need some fat....burgers & meatloaf are two examples. The added fat helps the dish to bind together, and using bacon for that fat adds to the flavor!
3 lbs ground venison
12-16 oz package bacon (frozen), ground fine (or dice finely, or use food processor)
meduim onion, diced
medium carrot, grated finely
dehydrated diced bell peppers, 1/8 cup
garlic powder, 1/4 teaspoon
onion powder, 1/4 teaspoon
liquid smoke, 1/4 teaspoon
Worcestershire sauce, 1 Tablespoon
ketchup, 1/4 cup (plus some for the top at the end of baking)
water, 1/3 cup
quick oats (dry), 1/2 cup
Step 1: Grind the bacon
Working with the bacon while still frozen is much easier. Cut across the strips of bacon, then feed into food grinder or processor. (It's possible to dice the frozen bacon up with a knife, but you will have a less uniform mixture of bacon & venison.) I used the finest blade on my grinder.
Step 2: Adding the venison
The easiest way to thoroughly mix the ground bacon & ground venison is to run them through the grinder again....alternating a handful of venison, handful of ground bacon, handful of venison....etc.
Then set the meat aside while you get the other ingredients ready.
Step 3: Veggies......shhhh, don't tell the kids!
I just used diced onion & finely grated carrot....but, there are others you could use....cauliflower, summer squash, turnip, whatever you think you can get away with. (Keep in mind that 'green veggies' will be harder to 'hide'.)
A bit of veggies helps keep meatloaf nice & moist!
Step 4: Spice it up!
In a small bowl, blend together the water, spices & flavorings, and the egg....and beat it well.
Step 5: Fiber!
Oatmeal is great to add to meatloaf, it helps bind the loaf together (so it isn't 'crumbly').....and its good for you! And it 'hides' in meatloaf really well....'oatmeal haters' will never know its there!
Add the oatmeal to the small bowl of seasonings, etc and stir well.