Sunday, February 16

HOW TO: Make Meatballs


Making meatballs is one of the first things I ever learned. My great-great grandmother and great grand mother taught me. Well, actually it was more like I did what they said and pointed out in broken Italian/English. There are two main ways to make meatballs partial sauce cooking and full sauce cooking. I prefer the first, mainly for food safety and secondly you can save meatballs in freezer for later this way.

The most important thing to deiced when making meatballs is meat. What kind of meat do you want to use? There are a few "main types" of meatballs:

  1. 100% beef: these are usually what you find in restaurants, grocery store made, and frozen prepackaged.
  2. 50% beef/50% pork: these are usually found in mom & pop Italian restaurants, delis, and high end Italian ready made.
  3. 50% pork/50% veal: this is classic Italian right here, high end restaurants, Italian markets, and classic Italian households.
  4. 50% sausage meat/50% veal: this is also a classic Italian version, usually just depends on where in Italy family came from.
I learned with pork/veal but, I am not a fan of using veal so I make mine pork/beef. Regardless of your meat combination all meatballs are made the same. You can have a batch of 18 meatballs made in approximately 1 hour.

To start gather your ingredients, you will need:

1 lb. meat of your choice
2 slices bread
1 egg
1/4 cup minced onion (I am using dried but fresh are fine)
2 tbsp milk
1/2 tsp basil
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper

To begin preheat your oven to 350'.

In a medium mixing bowl shred bread into very small pieces.

Add in onions and all seasoning.

Toss with your fingers to mix well.

Add in egg and milk.

Using the back of a fork, break egg and mix well. You want a nice even color across the mixture.

Let the mixture sit for a good 5 minutes before moving on.

Add in meat.

Mix well to fully incorporate seasoning into meat, however work gently with fingers so you do not accidentally toughen the meat. 

Break off a nice size piece, roughly 2-3 tbsp.

Roll between the palms of your hands to form a ball.

Place on a baking sheet and continue until all meat has been rolled, you should get 15-18 meatballs.

Bake in oven 25-30 minutes.

While this cooks, in a large pot get your sauce heating over medium-low heat.

Add meatballs into sauce and continue to cook 5-10 minutes or until ready to serve.

Serve and cheers!