I have been using my dad's recipe for meatballs since I moved out in 2000 and went to college. I used to make them for my roommates in college, my husband's roommates in college, my friends after college, and now enjoy them with my family, especially when the weather starts to get cold. They are best served after cooking all day in some homemade sauce. Something you can find cooking in my kitchen most Sundays during the winter. Mmmmm.
The only thing I changed from the original recipe is the fact that I sautee the vegetables first. Since making the switch to grass-fed meat, I have found this to make things taste better and not dry out. See what you think!! I hope you enjoy them as much as we do!!
We use organic, fair trade, and or local ingredients
1 lb of meat of your choice (a mix of beef, pork, and veal is good, turkey is fine, just plain beef is fine too!) for this I used 1 lb of grass-fed, local beef – yum!
Half of an onion, diced
1 clove of garlic, minced
3/4 cup of breadcrumbs*
1/4 cup of pecorino-Romano (or parmesan) cheese
1/2 cup whole milk
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp basil
Salt and Pepper
*I use gluten free bread crumbs in mine – I make them using the heels of gluten free bread, dried in the oven (with just the light on for 24 hours), put them in a zip lock bag, crush them up. They work beautifully, and don’t look like that weird rice powder that the store is trying to pass off as breadcrumbs. We use Udi’s bread which responded to me quickly when I asked that they were in the process of going GMO free.
Sautee chopped onion and garlic in olive oil. I have found that this step counteracts the natural dryness that less fatty meat has. When you use turkey or grass-fed meat – you might find it to taste differently or be less fatty. When you sautee the veg going into the meat (as in the case with chicken burgers) it keeps everything moist.
In another bowl put the rest of the ingredients. When the onions are translucent, put them into the bowl with the rest.
Mix everything gently, the less you have to mix the better. When the ingredients are equally distributed you’re finished.
Roll the mixture into whatever size meatball you prefer. We like smaller ones.
Put them on a lined broiler pan that has been drizzled with olive oil. Broil meatballs until they are brown on top, then turn them over, and brown them on that side.
Remove them from the oven and put them in sauce to complete the cooking process!
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