Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Saucy Asian Meatballs

I sure am having fun pinning all sorts of delicious-looking foods over on Pinterest.  Saturday I decided I needed to make one of the recipes I'd pinned.  So I looked through a few to decide what I was in the mood for, picked four, and then let Jim have the final say.  Being a meatball guy, he picked Saucy Asian Meatballs.

The recipe came from Gimme Some Oven, but they used quite a bit of breadcrumbs in theirs and I always cut that way back.  So here's the way I made them:

Saucy Asian Meatballs

Preheat oven to 400 degrees and have a pan ready.  I used a jelly roll pan.

Meatball Ingredients:
  • 2 lbs. ground beef
  • 2 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup plain breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 rounded tsp. ground ginger
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 5 thinly-sliced green onions

Mix all of the above.  I find it easier to mix everything except the beef first and then add in the beef.  But I always forget and put the meat in the bowl first.  So this time I pushed the beef off to the side and mixed the other ingredients together with a fork, and then used my hands to mix the beef in.  I had my baking pan all ready to go, so I just formed the meatballs while my hands were still yucky.

I used a cookie scoop to form the meatballs.  It was one of the Pampered Chef scoops and is about 1" in diameter.  I got 40 meatballs.  They were pretty crowded in the pan but were not touching each other.

I poured one cup of beef bouillon over the meatballs and baked them at 400 degrees for a little over 10 minutes.  I baked them on a rack at the bottom of the roasting oven for the first 10 minutes and then took the rack out and baked them directly on the floor of the roasting oven for another 3 or 4 minutes.  At that point my instant read thermometer was reading in the 155 range for all the meatballs I tested, so I pulled them out.

While they were baking,  I made the sauce.

Asian Sauce Ingredients:
  • 1 jar hoisin sauce
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 Tbsp. roasted sesame seeds
Boy, I love the smell of sesame oil.  I could smell that stuff all day long.  Anyway, just mix all the above together.  Very easy!  In fact, this entire recipe came together very quickly and can be made ahead, so I'll definitely be doing this one again for parties.  You can either use the sauce to dip the meatballs into or you can dress all the meatballs with the sauce and serve them over rice or noodles.  My husband had his over noodles.  I save carbs for special occasions, but if I were going to eat these over rice, I would have them over sticky rice - it would be delicious.

I'm planning a lady's luncheon in the near future and am thinking about serving chinese cicken salad.  These will be perfect as one of the appetizers.  I'm guessing you could easily make the meatballs ahead and freeze them.  Although honestly they were so easy to make, the most time-consuming thing was forming the meatballs.

Give them a try - I think you'll be pleased with them.  I couldn't stop eating them and had to take some to my co-workers at the theater just to get them out of the house!

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