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Meatballs


Emily_R
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8 hours ago, Shel_B said:

 

 

Been meaning to follow up on this for some time: the technique worked great for me.

 

What's the advantage of cooking them in a muffin pan over just cooking them on a sheet pan?  That's always worked well enough for me that I've never seen any need to search for improvements.

 

Also, the grease runs off.  I'd think a muffin pan would hold the grease, like a loaf pan does for meatloaf.  Much better to cook them on a sheet.  No?

Edited by Jaymes (log)

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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make sure you have some fat in your mince. Add an egg andor bread crumbs if you want, but neither is essential.
tips:
after you have mixed all the ingredients together, form into one or more large balls. Squeeze each to remove the air inside. Then, flatten on a board, and cut into half, then quarters, etc, to the size you want, that way each ball will be the same size. Then take each lump, and compress it in your palm, and roll between palms. Make all the balls before putting into the sauce. If you fry them first, beef ones will become hard.
For the sauce, start with onions, cut into three mm dice, and fry immediately after chopping. Let the onions fry on medium heat for ten minutes, do not let them brown. Add garlic and fry for another five minutes, then add tomatoes. and continue to fry, until the oil separates, it should be dark red. Add any other ingredients, and let it simmer for about an hour. Then add the raw meat balls, continue to simmer until done. Add fresh herb just before the end.

 

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12 hours ago, Jaymes said:

 

What's the advantage of cooking them in a muffin pan over just cooking them on a sheet pan?  That's always worked well enough for me that I've never seen any need to search for improvements.

 

Also, the grease runs off.  I'd think a muffin pan would hold the grease, like a loaf pan does for meatloaf.  Much better to cook them on a sheet.  No?

 

Let me be more specific and detailed.  I use a mini muffin pan. The meatballs are made to be just a scosh larger than the upper diameter of the cups, thereby resting on the edge of the cup lip rather than in the muffin cup.  Much of the moisture or fat that exudes from the meatballs drips down into the cup and, therefore, away from the meat. When I've cooked them on a tray, the fat and moisture that runs out of the balls tends to gather around the balls, causing a certain mushiness and greasy taste and feel. In addition, the balls stay rounder (at least for me) than when they are on a tray.  That may or may not be important for you, but it sometimes is for me. Finally, I coat the meatballs with bread crumbs, and cook them in a hot oven.  Any fat that does exude from the balls is absorbed by the bread crumbs and aids in their browning, adding a nice accent to the meatballs.

I got this technique from an old "Good Eats" show, and have been playing with it for about a year.  The technique works well for me ... YMMV.

Edited by Shel_B
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 ... Shel


 

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12 minutes ago, Shel_B said:

 

Let me be more specific and detailed.  I use a mini muffin pan. The meatballs are made to be just a scosh larger than the upper diameter of the cups, thereby resting on the edge of the cup lip rather than in the muffin cup.

 

I got this technique from an old "Good Eats" show, and have been playing with it for about a year.  The technique works well for me ... YMMV.

 

Pretty smart.  Thanks.

 

 

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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Here's our current favorite meatballs recipe:  Taco Meatballs Recipe (Pinterest is NOT where I originally found it but can't seem to locate the original source at this point).
I add a package of Goya Sazon Cilantro & Achiote and double the cumin and go heavy on the ground pepper.   And use hotter chiles than the mild called for.  Etc...as cooks do.

I like the fact that there is no frying...just bake in the oven.  And I use a small scale to get them approximately the same size...and I make them very small.  I usually make a triple recipe so all that work lasts quite a while.  They can be added to just about anything which takes ground beef.

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Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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On 8/3/2010 at 7:32 AM, Emily_R said:

Hi folks --

I searched but was surprised that I couldn't find a topic on this already started... I'm planning on making spaghetti and meatballs tonight, and bought extra meat... Do you freeze your meatballs? How do you do it? Raw/Cooked? Plain/In Sauce? And how do you cook them -- raw dropped into the sauce, browned in a pan and then sauced, baked in the oven on a rack...

Looking forward to hearing all your meatball making expertise...

Emily

 

On 9/5/2010 at 0:26 PM, MaxH said:

I've been reheating various homemade meatballs ("Italian," "East-Asian," "Swedish") in all kinds of sauces since about 1975 and never had any problem proceeding directly from frozen, nor noticed any tendency for them to cook to mush. (Any more than I've noticed any tendency for cheap tough meats to tenderize in stews or braises in less than 2-3 hours; a recent pot roast took six). Maybe that reflects on the quality of my meatballs. But I'll mention the venerable US tradition (which I've also practiced at home) of keeping meatballs hot in sauces for buffet service, where they may simmer for a couple of hours over a spirit burner. It's always worked out well for me.

I'll add wryly that in my region with its many Vietnamese restaurants featuring "pho" soups [not actually an O in "pho" nor pronounced like one; the soup is French pot-au-feu evolved in Vietnam with local ingredients] you can encounter little meat or fish balls of hard-rubber consistency, resembling the hard little toy "Superballs" that bounce so effectively. Some of these meatballs recall a long-ago dining critic's phrase "USDA Steel-Belted Radial" and defy softening if cooked in anything less than boiling lye. (Use lye, not acid -- acid hardens albumins, alkali softens them -- if you want to try that.)

Here's my recipe:

Delicious heavenly light braised meat ball dumplings

Here's my recipe for the most heavenly light delicious meatball dumplings.

Soak 1 1/2 C of Panko bread crumbs in enough whole milk to be absorbed by the bread crumbs. You don't want so much milk that you have to squeeze the excess from the crumbs. Let sit in the fridge for a few minutes.

Remove the casings from four good sized fresh mild Italian sausages. Meat into food processor. Don't bother chopping it up. Two eggs. The cold bread crumbs/milk. Pinch of Kosher salt.

No added herbs/spices required. The sausages already have enough flavor.

On the slowest setting pulse the ingredients together until really well combined.

Form the mixture into golf ball sized meatballs, or maybe slightly larger.

The mixture should be slightly sticky and you have to be careful. I slightly wet my hands in cold water if I need to.

Onto a plate/tray.

Heavy ceramic/cast pot. Med. heat. Four T's good OO. One fine chopped sweet onion. As many rough chopped fresh garlics as you like. A few coarsely torn fresh basil leaves. Allow these ingredients to slowly cook till soft. Yes fry the basil leaves.

Two cans of diced tomatoes which has been sieved to remove the seeds/skin bits.

1/2 C of good red wine. One C of chicken stock. A Tsp of sugar.

Bring to rolling boil for a few minutes. Gently add the meatballs. Heat down to slow simmer for about 30 minutes. The meatballs will be almost white. They will want to float to the top when cooked through.

Think sort of like dumplings.

The texture will be so smooth and fluffy you'd think you are eating a dumpling!

Only one that tastes like a mild Italian sausage.

I served them last night with creamy mashed potatoes and corn niblets which I had lightly browned in clarified butter.

You can use pretty much any meat in place of the mild Italian sausages of course. The trick is to combine the Panko crumbs/milk/eggs really well then slow simmer the meatballs.

Next time for a special dinner I'm going to use raw prawns with fine chopped green onions. For the sauce/stock in place of tomatoes I'll do my best to make a descent 'pho' soup base.

The possibilities are endless using this method.

 

Nick Stellino was the inspiration only he used cubes of Italian bread. I used Panko b/c that's what I had in the pantry.

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