Sunday, January 30, 2011

Swedish Meatballs with Spicy Plum Sauce

I'm back...! I haven't written for a while for too many (not necessarily very good!) reasons. So I do have a backlog of posts. I will start with this meatball recipe that I made for "snack" time at work (every Friday at 10 am - I still love it!). I think I've referred to this recipe before but have never posted it. Whenever I've made these meatballs, they have been quite a hit. The combination of the different types of ground meat makes for a great tasting meatball. I love the sweet and creamy sauce. I also like that it is an authentic "Swedish meatball" recipe (and not those overly sweet frozen ones with a rubbery texture) since Marcus Samuelsson is Swedish!

Swedish Meatballs with Spicy Plum Sauce

Swedish Meatballs with Spicy Plum Sauce - Makes 40 meatballs
Adapted from Marcus Samuelsson.
While the original recipe called to fry the meatballs in butter, I baked the meatballs this time. I don't know why I never did this in the past because I actually really dislike the task of frying meatballs, smelling like a meatball myself and worrying that they're not cooked through. Baking the meatballs is healthier, easier and ensure they're all cooked through! On another note, I follow the same recipe for spaghetti & meatballs!

For the meatballs
½ cup fine dry breadcrumbs
½ cup heavy cream
1-½ Tbsp olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, minced
⅔ cup ground beef
⅔ cup ground veal
⅔ cup ground pork
2 Tbsp honey
1 large egg
salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a small bowl, combine breadcrumbs and ½ cup heavy cream.
Stir with fork until smooth; set aside.
Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat, and add the onion.
Sauté until softened but not browned, about 5 minutes.
In a large bowl, combine beef, veal, pork, honey, cooked onions and egg.
Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Add the breadcrumb-cream mixture to the meat, and mix well (I find this step takes a while to make sure there are no breadcrumb lumps).
In a frying pan, cook a small meat patty in oil or butter; taste the meat and adjust the seasoning.
With wet hands (to keep the meat from sticking), shape the remaining meat into meatballs the size of a golf ball
Lay the meatballs on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper.
Bake the meatballs for 30 minutes at 350F. (Check that meat is cooked through by cutting one in half; bake longer if required).

Swedish Meatballs Swedish Meatballs
Making the meatballs.

For the sauce

3 Tbsp butter
1 large shallot, minced
½ red bell pepper, minced
6 dried plums, chopped finely
2 cups chicken broth
¼ cup + 2 Tbsp plum sauce

In a skillet, melt the butter on medium-high heat.
Add shallots, red pepper and plums.
Saute until softened and lightly browned.
Add chicken broth and heavy cream.
Stir in plum sauce, and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Add meatballs to sauce and simmer over medium heat, until sauce thickens slightly and meatballs are heated through, about 5 minutes.

Spicy Plum Sauce Spicy Plum Sauce
Making the accompanying spicy plum sauce.

I like serving these meatballs with slices of bread to sop up that sauce! None of it should be wasted. Make these meatballs at your next party. I promise there won't be any leftovers!

Swedish Meatballs with Spicy Plum Sauce

Friday, January 7, 2011

Happy New Year and Tetley Tea Contest Winner

Happy 2011 to all my readers! I have been slacking when it comes to writing but I promise to get at it this week!

Meanwhile, I would like to announce the winner for the Tetley Tea contest.

Tetley tea contest

Congratulations to AnnM! Please e-mail me your home address!