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Any views on meatballs?
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Lakritz



Joined: 07 Jun 2005
Posts: 120
Location: Birmingham, UK (via Essen, Germany)

PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 3:40 pm    Post subject: Any views on meatballs? Reply with quote

I'm currently doing some 'research' on meatball recipes. (I hardly dare to say this, on a sophisticated forum as this one...) It all started with trying to recreate a German dish - Koenigsberger Klopse - which turned out a great success with the family despite the unusual sauce (white with capers). Now I'm planning to compile the best meatball recipes as a present for a friend whose favourite dish is meatballs.
Obviously, this will mean cooking an awful lot of meatball dishes (maybe every Friday?) but that should please my kids. So, two birds with one stone...
As there are zillions of recipes out there - which is your favourite?

Another question: is anyone else still as cautious about beef? I haven't eaten any since the BSE crisis here in the UK, which means I always have to replace beef in recipes with something else; very often that isn't totally satisfactory. Any views?
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Dairy_Queen



Joined: 29 Jan 2005
Posts: 342
Location: Chicago and other places

PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 4:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What a fun topic, Lakritz!

I love, love, LOVE meatballs, of all kinds, shapes and sizes. I have two favourite recipes: Porcupine Meatballs (from my childhood on my Dad's side) and Swedish Meatballs, (from my childhood on my Mom's side.)

Whether eaten cold, with pasta, hot, or just as finger-food, this is one of my favourite wee foods.

And in the U.S., none of my friends or I were ever worried about beef health issues.

Oven Porcupines

1 pound hamburger
1/2 cup uncooked rice
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup chopped onion
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon celery salt
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon pepper

Sauce

1 can (5 ounce) tomato sauce
1 cup water
2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

In a mixing bowl combine the hamburger, rice, 1/2 cup water, onion, salt, celery salt, garlic powder, and pepper. Mix well. Shape into balls. Place meatballs in an ungreased baking dish. Mix together the tomato sauce, 1 cup water, and Worcestershire sauce. Pour over the meatballs. Cover and bake in a 400 degree F. oven for 45 minutes. Remove cover and continue baking for an additional 15 minutes.
This meatball recipe will make 15-20 meatballs.

********************************************************

I forgot about this one until I looked it up in my recipe book:


Meatball Recipes with Sauerkraut

2 pounds hamburger
1 envelope onion soup mix
1 cup bread crumbs
3 eggs (beaten)
1 bottle (12 ounce) chili sauce
1 1/2 cup water
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 can (16 ounce) sauerkraut (drained)
1 can 16 ounce whole cranberry sauce

In a bowl combine hamburger, soup mix, crumbs, and egg. Mix well. Shape into balls and place in 9x13 inch baking dish. In a saucepan combine chili sauce, brown sugar, water, sauerkraut, and cranberry sauce. Mix well while cooking over a low heat until it begins to boil. Pour over the meatballs and cook at 325 degrees F. for two hours.
This meatball recipe will serve 4 to 6.

*********************************************************

SWEDISH MEATBALLS from a 1908 recipe that I still use today.

Saute 3 tablespoons finely chopped onion in butter. Mix together with: 1/2 lb. each veal & pork (preferably ground together) 1 c. half & half cream 1 c. bread crumbs 2 eggs 1 tsp. salt 1/2 c. catsup or tomato sauce 1/2 tsp. pepper 1/2 tsp. allspice A little chopped parsley, fresh or dried

Mix all together thoroughly and refrigerate several hours before using (very important). Make small round balls no larger then the end of your thumb. Fry in a little butter until brown. Shake skillet constantly to keep meatballs round. Place the browned meatballs in a covered casserole in a slow oven, 325 to 350 degrees for 30 minutes. They are delicious and have a very special flavor.
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Lakritz



Joined: 07 Jun 2005
Posts: 120
Location: Birmingham, UK (via Essen, Germany)

PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 5:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you Dairy Queen!

Until today, I hadn't even heard of porcupine meatballs or ever eaten any (to my knowledge) meatballs with rice, so that's a recipe I will try out first. (The kids will love the name, too!)

The one with the Sauerkraut and the chili sauce sounds intriguing, I'm quite partial to Sauerkraut but I haven't managed to convince my family yet, but they all love chili.

And of course, Swedish meatballs will have to form part of my collection. I also have some questions: when you say 'hamburger' would that be pork or a mixture of pork and beef?; when you say onion soup (I've come across this intriguing ingredient in American recipes before...), would that be something like Knorr's French onion soup? And the cranberry sauce, what sort of consistency would that have?
Sorry!! But when you try to recreate someone's fave dishes, you want to get it right, don't you?

Kind regards
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Lakritz



Joined: 07 Jun 2005
Posts: 120
Location: Birmingham, UK (via Essen, Germany)

PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 5:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

... another question: what's half and half cream? We have single, double and clotted cream here in the UK.
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Aprilia



Joined: 12 Jun 2005
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 6:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lakritz wrote:
... another question: what's half and half cream? We have single, double and clotted cream here in the UK.


Half and half is an light cream - in the UK you'd use light cream.
In Sweden I would choose "kaffegr├Ądde" with a small shot of a heavier cream. Which is exactly what my grandmothers meatball recepie calls for...
(The bartender at Churchills bar in SanFrancisco made a mean Irish Coffee topped with frothy half and half - so much better than whipped cream. Havent tried it myself, but a handmixer might do the trick....)

Grannys Swedish meatballs:
450 g ground beef (beef, or half veal/half beef), finely ground
1/2 c dry breadcrumbs soaked in:
1 c half and half/light cream
1-1,5 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground white pepper
1 onion, finely chopped (fry half of it in butter, use the rest raw)
1 whole egg + 1 eggyolk
and - grannys secret ingredient that makes all the difference: 1 tbsp anchovy juice
Of course, swedish canned anchovy is not easily found abroad - maybe at yr local Ikea? Substitute w 1 mashed "regular" anvchovy fillet, that works!

Mix beef, soggy breadcrumbs + the rest -dont overwork the mix.
Make tiny meatballs (if Im lazy I make flat and minisized hamburgers).
Cook in butter until nicely browned.

Serve w mashed potatoes (potatoes, warm milk and a good sized knob of butter, salt...), brown gravy and "lingon berry sauce" - cranberry will do in an pinch.

Or let grownups nibble as a starter, goes down great aw drinks.

And great in an sandwich by midnight...
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Vickie



Joined: 01 Jun 2005
Posts: 46
Location: Sydney, Australia

PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you can stop worrying about the BSE thing now. Beef on the bone was banned for so long and as far as I know, British herds have been clear for a long while now. The disease wasn't carried in the good quality meat, more in the bits that attach meat to the bone (hence the ban) and in the nasty bits that got put into low grade beefburgers etc. That's not the most scientific explanation in the world, but you probably know what I mean. A good quality mince is above reproach.

With regards to meatball recipes, Nigella has a nice one that uses pork which you can get through the channel 4 website.

My mother also does a fabulous one which involves putting a small piece of blue cheese (I think she uses Roquefort) in the centre of each meatball. Again, cook the meatballs in a tomato sauce a la Nigella. It just makes a standard meatball recipe a little more interesting. Add a little cumin to the meatball mix.
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Lakritz



Joined: 07 Jun 2005
Posts: 120
Location: Birmingham, UK (via Essen, Germany)

PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 7:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you, Aprilia and welcome! (I noticed you joined today. As you can see I haven't been here long either but I think it's fabulous!)

That's interesting that your grandmother's secret ingredient was anchovy juice. As the German (Koenigsberg=Kaliningrad now; Baltic) meatballs contain half a salt herring, I had been surprised that I had not yet come across any 'fishy' ingredients in the Swedisch meatballs recipes I looked at.
I have an anchovy essence (anchovies, oil, vinegar), which is a liquid and very potent, so that might do the trick. But I also have an Ikea nearby at which I frequently meet with a friend for a chat, so I will check out what authentic ingredients they stock. Probably the only place for lingonberry jelly/sauce. (Preiselbeere in German.)

Have fun!
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Lakritz



Joined: 07 Jun 2005
Posts: 120
Location: Birmingham, UK (via Essen, Germany)

PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 8:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Vickie - thanks, I've saved the Nigella recipe (I think I'll include 10 recipes by celebrity chefs).
I love your Mum's idea with the blue cheese (I love Stilton and Shropshire Blue) - I have done something similar before with hard cheese (Gouda or Cheddar) or soft herb/garlic cheese like Philadelphia or Le Roulet. That works well, too.

Since writing the above, about the BSE, I've looked at the net to see what the expert opinion is, and found more or less what you are saying. Prime cuts and quality mince should be okay. So I think I can ease up on the beef front. Very Happy It'll be lovely to cook and eat some of the dishes I haven't had for yonks.
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Dawna



Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 125
Location: Vancouver

PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2005 11:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm very fond of lamb meatballs, made with dried or fresh mint, oregano, pomegranate molasses and cumin. I use egg white only as the binder, and panko-style breadcrumbs. We put them in pita-pockets with tzatziki sauce, sliced tomatoes and cucumbers... sort of Arabic and Greek at the same time.

A couple of years ago, I made "turkey dinner" meatballs. I used ground turkey breast and thigh, "stuffing" herbs - sage, thyme, etc. - finely chopped dried cranberries, and a little ricotta (pushed through a sieve) for moisture. I baked them in a lasagne pan in the oven, and served them on toothpicks. They were an unexpectedly big hit!

I don't think I've ever really followed a specific recipe for meatballs, though. I just kind of make it up as I go.
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Lakritz



Joined: 07 Jun 2005
Posts: 120
Location: Birmingham, UK (via Essen, Germany)

PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2005 10:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you Dawna,
I like the pitta pocket idea. I have cooked several types of lamb koftas before but one of my sons isn't too keen on lamb (or coriander, which I like to add). Confused
And the 'turkey dinner' meatballs sound similar to the turkey burgers that my kids do like (including the cranberries), though I don't think my recipe features ricotta. I very much like thew idea though. So thank you very much.
By the way, what are panko-style breadcrumbs?
And I agree, in general, most people will probably just make them up as they go along...
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Dairy_Queen



Joined: 29 Jan 2005
Posts: 342
Location: Chicago and other places

PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2005 1:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lakritz wrote:
Thank you Dairy Queen!

Until today, I hadn't even heard of porcupine meatballs or ever eaten any (to my knowledge) meatballs with rice, so that's a recipe I will try out first. (The kids will love the name, too!)
Shocked
You're so welcome, Lakritz! It's nice to identify with your thread because so many HERE leave me in the dust, from lack of knowledge or interest.

The Porcupine Meatballs are a quintessential MidWest American dish from the 50's (almost "vintage" now). They were served on 1000's of dinner tables to wee Baby Boomers, who are now in their 50's to 70's and have taught their OWN kids and grandkids (yipes!) to love this dish. The meatballs take their name from the rice sticking out, like the quills of a porcupine.


Lakritz wrote:
And of course, Swedish meatballs will have to form part of my collection. I also have some questions: when you say 'hamburger' would that be pork or a mixture of pork and beef?; when you say onion soup (I've come across this intriguing ingredient in American recipes before...), would that be something like Knorr's French onion soup? And the cranberry sauce, what sort of consistency would that have?
Sorry!! But when you try to recreate someone's fave dishes, you want to get it right, don't you?

Kind regards


Answers to questions:

1) If any of MY recipes call for "hamburger", it's BEEF ONLY. I always use ground sirloin so I don't have to deal with draining fat.

2) Onion Soup Mix, for most American's is Lipton's Onion Soup Mix, which again, became the Holy Spice of Choice during the 1950's. Obviously, you can use whatever brand tickles your fancy, but that's the one that I grew up using and tasting.

3) The ONLY cranberry sauce I use for recipes is OCEAN SPRAY brand. I've used every brand out there and always return to Ocean Spray;the others have "off-putting" metalic tastes...ick! And for the recipe in question, I use the version with WHOLE berries in the gel.

And while you're trying new recipes, Lakritz, here's a completely Retro 1950's recipe that is still wowing them "down on the farm." I know that the addition of "grape jelly" sounds weird, but really, no stranger than using currant jelly or pinot noir jelly in a contemporary recipe.

My Australian friend, Kay, who moved to Los Angeles over 20 years ago and married a Hispanic man, altered the Classic Grape Jelly meatball recipe years ago, to reflect more modern taste for zip and dash. She sent the recipe to me over 12 years ago and I whip it up whenever I'm going to a party and have to bring appetizers; these babies disappear off of the plate faster than you can restock them!

Sweet and Sour Jelly Meatballs AKA Jelly Meatballs

10-12 appetizers

4 hours 5 minutes 5 mins prep

1 (14 ounce) jar chili sauce (like Heinz)
1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (32 ounce) jar grape jelly
1 (7 ounce) can chopped mild green chilies ((4 ounce can can be used too, but I like 7))
3 tablespoons dried onion flakes
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon of your favorite curry powder, to taste
1/2 teaspoon dried ancho chile powder
1/4 teaspoon dried chipotle powder, to taste (optional)
2 lbs pre-cooked frozen meatballs (I prefer the ones from Ikea) OR home-made ones, if you prefer.

Put all the ingredients but meatballs into the crockpot and mix well.
Add the meatballs and stir to coat well.
Put the crockpot on low and let cook for 4 hours on low (if you use thawed meatballs, it'll only take a couple of hours in the crockpot, instead).
Serve, standing back so you don't get trampled by the rush of the crowd.

Note 1: We've tried other preserves and jam than grape jelly, but the sauce simply didn't taste as good; I'm sticking with plain, old grape jelly from now on and will be happy with it.

Note 2: the above makes a lot of sauce, a good deal of which will be left over when the meatballs have been eaten. I've found that having a *lot* of sauce is of real benefit when making meatballs in the crockpot - the meat remains nice and moist.
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Dairy_Queen



Joined: 29 Jan 2005
Posts: 342
Location: Chicago and other places

PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2005 1:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lakritz: I was chatting with my L.A. friend just now, and mentioned posting her Jelly Meatball recipe on this site. She emailed me another recipe that her and Juan gobble up, and this is a true compliment, because this guy LOVES HIS MEAT!!!

Kay mentioned that they are better the next day, and if they begin to fall apart, cook them first and then top them off with the sauce. They also freeze well.

Eggplant Meatballs

4 servings
1 hour 20 minutes 20 mins prep

1 large eggplant
2 beaten eggs
1/3 cup parmesan cheese or romano cheese
1 teaspoon mixed Italian herbs
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
black pepper, to taste
sea salt, to taste
1 cup breadcrumbs or cracker crumbs

Slice eggplant and sprinkle with salt.
Let sit 10 minutes to draw out water.
Rinse and pat dry.
Saute on stovetop with a splash of olive oil and about 1/4 cup water until eggplant is soft.
Remove and chop finely.
Mix everything but the breadcrumbs when eggplant is cool.
Then add breadcrumbs and mix until you get the consistency you want to form the balls.
Place in a generously olive-oiled cast iron skillet about l inch apart and bake at 400 degrees until golden brown, about 40 60 minutes.
Turn halfway through baking to ensure even browning.

(You may not want to use olive oil to brown these if you're using a non-stick pan; then there's to much oil! Try it out and see what works for you.)
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Lakritz



Joined: 07 Jun 2005
Posts: 120
Location: Birmingham, UK (via Essen, Germany)

PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2005 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yummmie! I love aubergines!! I'm sure that recipe from your friend will be a hit (especially if my men don't know what is in it...), and I'm totally intrigued by the jelly meatballs. I have come across 'grape jelly' in American recipes before but I don't think we can get it here. I guess it's like a jam jelly/preserve type thing made from grapes? I shall scour the shops but I'm not hopeful. Presumably one could make it oneself? (must check the jam thread...).
ancho chili? What's different about it from 'normal' chili powder? And is chipotl powder particularly hot paprika?
I'm so sorry about all these questions. I'm glad you like the thread, and I'm very excited about trying them all. Though I suddenly remembered that I'm without oven at the moment, only the gas burners work, so the results might not be quite as expected...

Oh yes, Lipton I only know as tea but Ocean Spray have obviously cornered the cranberry market, they have lots of cranberry drinks in the supermarket. So, it's quite conceivable that they also sell their cranberry sauce here.
Thanks also for the 'stories' and info that go with the recipes. I shall include those in the recipe booklet for Karl if I may.
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Shanti



Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 32
Location: Duluth, MN

PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2005 3:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So many tasty looking recipes! Very Happy

This is my favorite. You can easily substitute ground beef or half beef/half pork for the venison without compromising any flavor. I often bake the meatballs on a raised rack over a sheet pan because I don't like them sitting in the grease and then I don't have to drain. These taste great over white rice, wild rice or egg noodles.

Moose (Venison) Meatballs with Cranberry Barbecue Sauce
Source North American Hunt Club Favorite Wild Game Cookbook

Meatballs:
2 lb lean ground moose or substitute, crumbled
1 cup cornflakes crumbs
2 eggs
1/4 cup snipped fresh parsely
2 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp pepper

Sauce:
1 can (16 oz) whole berry cranberry sauce
1 bottle (12 oz) chili sauce
1/3 cup catsup
2 tbsp packed brown sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp instant minced onion

Heat oven to 350*. In large mixing bowl, combine meatball ingredients. Shape mixture into 42 meatballs, about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Arrange meatballs in single layer in 9x13 baking dish. Bake for 30-35 minute or until no longer pink, turning once. Drain.

In medium mixing bowl, combine sauce ingredients. Pour over meatballs. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until sauce is hot and bubbly and flavors are blended. Serve with hot cooked rice if desired.
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Dawna



Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 125
Location: Vancouver

PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2005 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lakritz, Panko are Japanese breadcrumbs. They are coarse, very crisp, and usually unseasoned (in my experience, anyway). I use them for the coating for baked chicken strips, too. They are often used in tempura to create additional texture in the batter mixture - the tempura item is dipped in the batter, then lightly dredged in panko for extra crispy edges.

I live in Vancouver, which has a huge Asian population and corresponding market selections, but I hear that panko are pretty easy to find most places, now.
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