There are a number of dishes that separate the “girls from the women” so to speak and meatballs is one of them. Anyone can throw together those little golf balls that are always on the buffet table. Making delicious, delicate and dreamy – yikes – ok making a great meatball is not only about the ingredients it is about the technique. After years of lusting for the meat grinder attachment to my Kitchen Aid stand mixer, I finally bought one. I love it! There is something very primal about grinding your own meat!
freshly ground beef
If you do not have a meat grinder…I’ve been cooking for 40 years and mine is only one month old…ask your butcher to grind up some fresh meat for you. It only takes a minute and makes all of the difference in the world.
The most important thing to remember when making meatballs is to use a light touch. Something about mixing meats together tends to make us aggressive. Mix your meatballs well but gently…try to imagine that air is the secret ingredient and you need to add it!
preheat oven 400*F
1lb beef medium fat content, freshly ground
1/2 lb pork shoulder, freshly ground
2 large eggs, beaten
1/4 cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
1/2 cup flat leaf parsley
1 tablespoon fennel seeds, freshly pounded
1 tablespoon sea salt
1 teaspoon pepper, freshly grated
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
4 slices white bread, crusts removed
1 cup whole milk
1 cup imported parmesan cheese, freshly grated
Using your hands mix meats together with the eggs…add breadcrumbs, parsley, fennel seeds, salt, pepper and garlic…gently combine
Tear the white bread into 1 inch pieces and place in a separate bowl…add milk and allow to stand for 10 minutes…add cheese…mix together
add soaked bread mixture to meat…take your time and combine with your hands
Using a large ice cream scoop form meatballs and place on a parchment lined baking sheet
Place in oven…check at 35 minutes by cutting a meatball in half to ensure that it is cooked all of the way through!
Place the meatballs in your favorite tomato sauce or use my Marinara sauce.
In my house this recipe serves 6 but we have appetites like elephants!
THESE MEATBALLS FREEZE PERFECTLY
an ice cream scoop makes the job a little less messy