Saturday, January 15, 2011

Recipe : Basic Meatballs

This recipe comes from the cookbook Miserly Meals: Healthy, Tasty Recipes Under 75¢ per Serving, by Jonni McCoy.  By her calculations, if you make 36 one-inch meatballs, the cost is 24 cents per serving of 4 meatballs.  I'm not sure about that exact figure, but it IS cheaper to make this than to buy a box of pre-made frozen meatballs.  So I'm ahead.

A couple of thoughts.  Making one-inch meatballs is a whole lot harder than you'd think.  I think it would be nice to have some kind of meatball-maker-scoop-thingy like this one.   Making them by hand, mine were closer to two inches.  Which made the family happy, but really reduced the yield from the recipe!!  And also increased the baking time - be aware of this and test for doneness before serving.  Another thing - next time I would skip the diced onion and instead add a packet of onion soup mix.  Less chunks and more flavor = a good thing.  I did find them a little lacking in flavor.  And I think you could get away with doubling the oats without affecting things.

All that being said, here's the recipe as published:

Basic Freezer Meatballs

1 lb. ground beef
1/2 cup oats
1/4 onion, diced
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 1/2 tsp flour
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup water
2 tbsp Italian seasoning

Combine all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl.  Mix well with your hands or your mixer.  Shape into 36 1-inch meatballs.  Place on a baking sheet.  Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.

Remove from oven and place on a plate lined with paper towels to drain the fat.  Move to a cookie sheet or other tray that can be placed in the freezer.  Don't let them touch each other on the tray.  Freeze overnight.  Place the meatballs in a freezer bag, squeeze the air out of the bag to avoid freezer burn, and return to freezer.  Store for up to 4 months.

Use in any recipe that calls for meatballs.

1 comment:

  1. For the onion....grate it :) (same goes for garlic) It's a tip I've "borrowed" from Rachael Ray, and it works out perfectly. Like you I've had issues with large onion "chunkies" in the little itty bitty balls.