Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Swedish Meatballs

It seems as though most countries have a meatball or meatloaf - mix some meat, breadcrumbs and egg together and season according to taste. In the case of Swedish Meatballs - nutmeg, allspice, onions and salt & pepper are all you need.

The great thing about meatballs is that in about 2 hours you can make 40 or 50 meatballs that will freeze for some weeks and can easily be made into meatball subs, meatball spaghetti sauce, meatballs & gravy and on and on.

We're having Soup Night at the end of the week, so we've made meatballs ahead of time for this month's Scandinavian themed dinner. Of course, we enjoyed a hearty meal first before packing away the little beefy jewels until the weekend.

Swedish Meatballs
3 lbs ground beef (15% fat)
1 lb ground pork
1 1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1/2 cup cream
1 1/2 cup milk
1 small onion, minced fine (by hand or in a food processor)
3 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked allspice berries

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees

Mix the egg, egg yolk, onion, cream, milk, breadcrumbs and seasoning together in a large bowl. Let sit about 5 minutes, so the breadcrumbs soak up some of the liquid.

Process the beef & pork in the food processor, about 1 pound at a time for about 5 to 6 pulses for each pound. Mix meat into the egg/cream/seasoning mix.

Using a medium scoop (roughly 3 tablespoons), form the meat mixture into balls onto two unlined sheet pans. You can crowd them on the pan, just don't let them touch.

Bake for about 15 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through, until the meatballs are slightly browned and firm to the touch.

Let cool completely and put into ziptop bags and freeze.

When you are ready to use the meatballs, let them thaw in the refrigerator for a day. You can plop them into a brown gravy or tomato sauce to reheat, or fry them in a pan until warm and add to a sandwich or other sauce.

With Swedish Meatballs, a traditional accompaniment is pickled cucumbers. These are lightly pickled and great with any roast meat or even on a sandwich or in a wrap.

Pickled Cucumbers
1 English cucumber, cut into 1/8 inch slices
1/2 cup white vinegar
2 Tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup warm water
2 Tablespoons chopped parsley
salt & white pepper to taste

In 2 cup pyrex or small bowl, combine salt & sugar with the warm water to dissolve. Add the pepper, vinegar and chopped parsley and stir to combine. Lay the cucumber slices in a shallow dish and pour the vinegar mixture over the top. Let sit for 3 to 4 hours to mellow. These will last about a week in the fridge.

1 comment:

Robyn said...

I can't wait for meatballs and pork!