Monday, December 26, 2011

Eva's Swedish Meatballs

If you are from Minnesota, it is considered a criminal act if you dislike Swedish meatballs. For my son Patrick, there is no meal more greatly appreciated than Swedish meatballs served over dumpling egg noodles. That's what he ordered up for his birthday earlier this month and that's what I'm making for him again this Wednesday night.

This recipe is from my longtime friend, Eva Fisher. Eva is married to my gaming partner, John Fisher. In an act of cruel and unusual punishment, Eva set up John's Xbox Live gaming account and gave him the gamertag, "Fishlips". Your gamertag is what you go by in the gaming world and we must sit through untold mudslinging and ridicule every time we enter a new game lobby and and this new crew of gamers sees this guy named Fishlips. "OMFG, this dude's name is FISHLIPS!".

Eva's recipe serves six (her recipe yields 30 meatballs, so that assumes 5 meatballs per person). I recommend serving them over dumpling egg noodles. Eva also notes that when you are forming the meatballs, having wet hands or chilling the mixture slightly first, will make the task easier.

Ingredients for the Meatballs
1 1/2 cups torn white bread
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon butter
3/4 pound lean ground beef
1/2 pound ground veal
1/4 pound ground pork
1 egg
1/4 cup parsley, chopped fine
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 tablespoons butter

Ingredients for the Gravy
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 beef bouillon cube
1/2 teaspoon powdered instant coffee
1 1/4 cups boiling water


  1. Soak bread in cream for 5 minutes
  2. Melt butter in a large skillet and saute onions until they are soft.
  3. Combine beef, veal, pork, cream-soaked bread, onion, egg, parsley, salt, pepper, ginger and nutmeg. Mix thoroughly until well combined.
  4. Shape into 1 1/2 inch balls.
  5. Melt remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in the same large skillet and then brown meatballs in skillet. When they are browned, remove meatballs and set aside.
  6. Bring 1 1/4 cups of water to a boil. Add bouillon cube and 1/4 teaspoon powdered instant coffee. Wait until both are dissolved.
  7. To make the gravy, melt 2 more tablespoons of butter over medium heat in the same skillet you used to brown the meatballs. Then stir in flour.
  8. Slowly add bouillon/coffee mixture, whisking as you add the liquid. Cook and stir until gravy thickens and bubbles.
  9. Add meatballs back to skillet. Cover and reduce heat and cook for 30 minutes. Stir every 10 minutes.
  10. Divide meatballs among serving plates and serve.

Wine pairing: Merlot

John and Eva Fisher

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