MEALS IN ADVANCE: Basic Meatballs

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What could be wrong with a delicate ball of meat? Such a versatile food they can be used as appetizers, Swedish Meatballs, sweet and sour meatballs, on spaghetti or even meatball soup. If you can master a basic meatball you have so many dinner possibilities at your fingertips. I have seen many recipes that call for Parmesan cheese but I can never taste it, so why add it? I make meatballs to be flavorful, but simple enough they can be used in a variety of dishes.

INGREDIENTS:
2 pounds lean Ground Meat
1 c Bread Crumbs
1 1/2 Tb Dried Basil
2 Tb Dried Oregano
1 Tb Salt
1 Tb Pepper
1 Tb finely Minced Garlic
1/4 c Milk
3 Eggs

uses:
Spaghetti and Meatballs
Meatball Subs
Meatball Soup
Swedish Meatballs
BBQ Appetizers

In a large bowl, whip the eggs and milk together. Add all the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Fold in the ground meat. In this case I used lean hamburger, but you can easily substitute turkey or chicken. If you are going to use sausage, cut back on the herbs as they will already be present in the meat. While you want the wet mixture thoroughly incorporated, over handling the ground meat will create meatballs that are not as fluffy

Using a small scoop, make small mounds of the mixed meat and drop onto a greased baking sheet. Once all the meatballs have been scooped out, roll them in your hands. They should be as round as you can get them. The meat need to be firmly packed without being smooshed which is accomplished with gentle pressure. The mounds on the right have been rolled. One can see how the mounds on the left have little bits sticking out that would get overcooked in the oven.

Place the baking pan in the oven on the middle rack at 350 degrees. In 15 minutes shake the pan or use a spatula to move the meatballs around a little.

In another 10 minutes, remove from the oven and drain on a paper towel. If you formed larger meatballs, they will take longer. They should have good color and be firm.

Remove meatballs to a paper towel for a minute to absorb any excess grease. Allow to cool completely on a plate. You cannot skimp on this step! If they are still hot the stem will condense in the bag and form ice crystals ones placed in the freezer. This leads to freezer burn and yucky tasting meatballs. If you find you did seal them up too soon, once they are frozen shake the bag into a strainer. Shake the strainer and all the frost will fall out and you can reseal the meatballs back in the freezer bag. In a Ziplock bag they are good up to 2 months in the freezer.

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About keepingiteasyandsimple

I have been married for 20 years and have 3 children. My oldest is 20 and currently in the National Guard. My daughters are 15 and 11 and involved in everything. I believe life is difficult enough, that we can find ways to make the everyday just a little easier and perhaps even more simple. I love to cook, shop and make things with the kids.

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  1. Pingback: Meatball Soup « keepingiteasyandsimple

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