Thursday, April 7, 2011

Sweet and Sour Meatballs


Posted by: Maggie

I am so happy to be home again after back to back trips to New Jersey and Rhode Island. I was in New Jersey to visit family and see the Broadway tour of Spring Awakening with my sisters (amazing show by the way, it was my second time seeing it and Annie's FOURTH.) Being home is always great, but combined with a work trip to Rhode Island it just left me homesick for for my own apartment, and in particular my kitchen.

For someone who didn't even develop an interest in cooking until I moved into my own place with no roommates back in March 2008, I sure missed my kitchen a lot. Usually I miss my comfy bed, or my closet (I hate living out of a suitcase,) but my time away this time really just left me wanting to cook. Oftentimes I don't share stuff I make for dinner on here because I eat late, and ever since I got my baby* I've been making an effort to only take food photos in daylight in an effort to take the best pics possible. BUT, the lack of blogging and cooking I've done lately, and the fact that these meatballs were absolutely delicious and worthy of sharing meant I had to break my rule tonight, and take a picture in my fluorescent lit kitchen. 

If you enjoy meatloaf you will absolutely love these. The sweet and sour ketchup based sauce tastes very similar to what is slathered on a lot of meatloaves. I slightly adapted the recipe from my blogging idol, the fabulous Pioneer Woman. I went by the version in her cookbook (thanks Annie!) but an almost identical version is available on her website. And now here, duh.

I got 26 meatballs out of this recipe. I did not decide that a serving was 13 meatballs and stuff them in my face while watching Sex and the City reruns. Nope, wasn't me.

Here's what you'll need:

Meatballs: 

1 pound ground beef (I believe mine was 93% lean, but I don't think it really matters for this recipe)
1/2 cup quick oats
2/3 cup milk
2 tablespoons finely minced onions
1 teaspoon salt
Pepper, a few shakes

For frying:

4 tablespoons canola oil
Flour

Sauce:

1 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
4-6 tablespoons minced onion
Dash of Tabasco sauce

In a bowl, combine all of the meatball ingredients, and thoroughly combine with your hands. A spoon won't do the job here, get in there with grubby little hands. Roll the mixture into tablespoon sized balls, and refrigerate for 30-45 minutes to firm.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and mix together all of the ingredients for the sauce.

After the meatballs have had a chance to firm up, remove from the fridge. Heat the canola oil in a large frying pan, and dredge the meatballs in the flour, carefully shaking off the excess. Fry the meatballs in batches, just until light brown on all sides.

Place browned meatballs in a baking dish, pour the sauce on top, and bake uncovered in the preheated oven for 45 minutes.

*His name is Otis. Don't ask.

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