Tuesday, May 12, 2015

A Meatball Picnic

No idea why I named this post a Meatball Picnic but it just seemed a natural. I have never had meatballs at a picnic but it doesn't take much imagination to picture myself(or anyone else actually)sitting down at a picnic table and chowing on these. Add some coleslaw, potato salad(which will be my next post by the way)and I am a happy camper. Just thinking about a friend of mine whose name is Jim as well. He is tossing back a few cold ones right now at a local campground and looks as though he may be there for a while yet. 
Hey JIM!!! Make some meatballs, will ya?

New England Style Glazed Meatballs
What a way to start the summer! The sweet taste of New England in every luscious bite of these glazed meatballs would be a perfect accompaniment strung on bamboo skewers and served alongside you favorite potato salads and of course, a cold bottle of hard apple cider.

1/2 pound ground beef
1/2 pound ground pork
1 cup grated, tart apple(such as Jonagold, Granny Smith and Stayman)
1 cup dried bread crumbs
2 eggs, beaten
2 tablespoons oil
1/2 teaspoon each garlic powder, salt, chili powder and black pepper
1 1/2 cups ketchup
1 cup hard apple cider
2 tablespoons each soy sauce, cider vinegar, honey mustard and brown sugar
1 teaspoon each garlic and chili powder
Salt and black pepper to taste

In a  large bowl, combine all meatballs ingredients well and form into balls about an inch and a hla in diameter(or larger if you prefer). Place in a large skillet with oil and start browning over medium heat. Toss them around so that all sides are browned. Reduce heat to low, cover and gently cook until well done throughout, tossing occasionally. Meanwhile, make sauce.
Combine all ingredients in a saucepan, whisk well and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce to low and simmer for 15 minutes, or until reduced slightly and thickened. Add the meatballs to the sauce, stir to evenly coat and serve immediately.
You may also drain grease from meatballs and pour the glaze into skillet with meatballs. Gently simmer over low heat for 10 minutes before serving, gently stirring to lift the fonds from the bottom of the pan. .

Teriyaki Smoked Meatballs
Of course you can cook these meatballs in a skillet or in the oven, but why not try something out of the ordinary and delightfully 'outdoorsy"? These tropical inspired meatballs are perfectly complimented with smoking and when served with plain or fried rice of your choice, they will be a winner at any get-together.

1/2 pound ground beef
1/2 pound ground pork
1 small mango, peeled and diced small
3 tablespoons minced onion
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
1/2 teaspoon each salt and black pepper
Tropical Teriyaki Sauce:
1 1/2 cups orange juice, divided
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon dried ginger
4 cups warm plain or fried rice, if desired

Add first 9 ingredients together in a large bowl and mix well. Form into desired sizes, with 1 1/2-inch diameter shown in image. Get your smoker ready or toss a cupful of hydrated wood chips in your grill, on top of your grey coals or use a foil pack, tightly sealed, to produce smoke. Place the meatballs in a foil pan and on grate in cooker or barbecue grill. make sure you have the lowest setting of heat if using propane and level out charcoal if using briquettes to plate wood chips. When smoking, close all vents and smoke meatballs for about 30 minutes, according to the size, or until well done throughout. Remove, douse with your teriyaki sauce and serve immediately.
To make the Tropical Teriyaki Sauce, in a small bowl, mix 1/4 cup orange juice with cornstarch until smooth, making slurry; set aside. Place remainder orange juice, soy, brown sugar, garlic and ginger powder in a saucepan. Bring to boil over medium heat and whisk in cornstarch slurry until smooth. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring frequently, for 2 minus. Remove from heat and keep warm.

'Southern Fried Chicken' Meatballs

1 pound ground chicken or turkey
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup dried breadcrumbs
1/2 teaspoon each black pepper, oregano, celery salt, garlic and onion powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 strips cooked bacon, crumbled
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1 pound potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/4-inch thick
1 cup chicken stock
White Sauce;
3 tablespoons cornstarch mixed with 1/4 cup water
2 cups milk
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350-degrees F. In a large bowl, combine the first 10 ingredients together and mix well. Form into 1 1/2-inch sized meatballs. Place meatballs in a baking sheet with at least an inch-high sides. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until cooked throughout. Meanwhile, make White Gravy.
In a large saucepan, add milk, Worcestershire sauce, black pepper and salt. Whisk well and bring to scalding over medium heat. Do not let it boil. In a small bowl, whisk together cornstarch with water to make slurry. When milk is scalding, reduce heat to low and whisk in cornstarch slurry until smooth. Remove meatballs from the oven and transfer to saucepan with a slotted spoon, gently coating each meatball with gravy. Keep warm while preparing potatoes.
In a large skillet, melt butter over medium high heat. Add potato slices in a single layer. set aside any potatoes that don't fit right now. Cook potatoes until lightly browned on one side. If you have more potatoes to add, simply lift out cooked potatoes onto a plate while browning remainder. When potatoes are browned, after about 2-3 minutes, add chicken stock and reduce heat to medium. Cover and cook until tender but still firm. Remove cover and continue cooking potatoes, without mixing, another 3 minutes, or until most of the liquid has evaporated and the potatoes are done.
To assemble, evenly divide potatoes, decoratively, in the center of each plate. Top with equal amounts of meatballs and sauce and serve hot.

Tart Sweet and Sour Pork Meatballs

A little bit of everything to pique all areas of your taste buds. Pork meatballs are overlooked so often and without just cause, There is a reason why many Italian chefs add ground pork to meatballs, and this is a perfect example of a great tasting, saucy meatball. 

2 tablespoon oil
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic in oil
1/4 small onion, minced
3 ounces minced ham, pancetta or prosciutto is best here
1 pound ground pork
1/4 pound ground beef
1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
1/4 cup milk
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 teaspoon each salt and black pepper
Sweet and Sour Sauce:
1(15-ounce)can jellied cranberry sauce
1(12-ounce)bottle chili sauce
6 ounces apple juice*
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup brown sugar

In a large skillet over medium heat, add oil until hot. Add garlic and cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add onion and ham, stirring and continuing to cook until onions are softened. remove skillet from heat and transfer mixture to a large bowl with slotted spoon. Leave oil in skillet and set aside. Add remaining meatloaf ingredients and the bowl and mix thoroughly. Form into meatballs about an inch and a half in diameter(or larger if you prefer). Place them into the used skillet and start browning over medium heat. Toss them around so that all sides are browned. Reduce heat to low, cover and gently cook until well done throughout, tossing occasionally. Meanwhile, make sauce.
Add chili sauce, chicken broth, cranberry sauce and vinegar to the bowl of a food processor or blender and puree until smooth. Transfer to a small saucepan with sugar and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low and simmer 10 minutes, stirring once or twice. Remove from heat. When meatballs are done, lift out with a slotted spoon into the sauce, toss to coat and serve hot.

*Pour apple juice in the empty chili bottle, give it a good shake and pour into mixture. 

1 comment:

Zonafoodies said...

Just made the Southern Fried Chicken Meatballs. What a great concept and even better flavor. You continue to amaze us all here in Phoenix, "and we ain't even Yankees"