- 45 minutes
- For 6 people
- 3.5 € / person
Each person makes the meatballs in their own way , with the recipe of their mother or grandmother, improvising depending on what is in the fridge, more or less egg, with breadcrumbs or breadcrumbs, with or without garlic, with parsley, cumin, tomato, red, white wine, etc. and all the variants are yummy, for sure. I leave you a version that I learned in a course with the great chef Jesús Almagro , who is amazing, although I have introduced some variations on his recipe.
The recipe that I present today is the top of the house meatballs, a large ball of minced meat, mixed with eggs and various condiments. This very familiar and home-made dish, I remember eating them since I was little and that they are one of the dishes of a lifetime, is the typical recipe in which we question their origin or history. Meatballs are one of those traditionally Spanish dishes, but whose origin is Arabic. They taught the Spanish, back in the 16th century, to prepare this dish, which was initially called al-bunduqa, ‘the ball’ and whose recipe they say traveled to South America with the Conquest, spreading throughout the entire continent. Evolving in the rest of the world with infinite variants, we even have a vegetarian made from seitan. In the Spanish dictionary we can see the two names, meatballs and almóndigas , although the latter form is considered incorrect, but it can be used, although the best known is the first. The Granada historian Luis del Mármol documents the term in his “General Description of Africa (1573)”: ” They sell noodles, almojábanas and meatballs made from minced meat with spices and fried in oil .”
On the blog you can see that I am passionate about these meat balls and you can see them in a thousand ways, the classic meatballs with tomato , with an exotic touch that curry gives , the famous Greek meatless tomato meatballs , fish, with salmon and prawns , of oxtail in the form of a stew, with nuts with which I present today… A lot of ideas to eat this delicacy at home. This recipe is more for a special occasion, it has triumphed with the most demanding palates in the occasional dinner at home with friends, not even the sauce. I encourage you to prepare them at home and you will tell me.
Preparation of the meatloaf stuffed with cheese
- Peel the onion and carrot, chop finely. In a frying pan, sauté the red onion and the carrot pieces for a few minutes until they are poached. We reserve.
- The next step is to make the meat balls or meatballs, we have to try to make them all come out more or less the same but we need to prepare them a little bigger than usual to be able to wrap the cheese, with what the recipe could be called “cheese meatballs ”
- If you have the opportunity to choose the meat and it is minced by your butcher you can always control the quality of the meatballs, if you do not try to choose a good minced meat with which to make these wonderful balls. I have chosen pork and beef, a fairly common mixture because the beef gives it a lot of flavor and the pork that soft and juicy touch. On some occasion I have added lamb and I assure you that you will not try better meatballs, I could not make them like this because I have not found today in the super … for next time.
- Season the meat, both beef and pork in a large bowl. In another smaller container we separate the white from the yolk of the eggs and put the latter in the bowl with the meat. We also add the nutmeg, the slices of bread without the crust and the poached vegetables. Without fear we knead with our hands so that all the ingredients are mixed and we begin to work the meat mass until we make large balls (about 3 cm in diameter approximately) that we will then pass through flour.
- Chop some thick slices of cheese and cut into 1 cm cubes. We introduce a cheese taco inside each meatball, it should be in the middle of the meat without being seen. We are leaving them on a plate.
- In a frying pan with extra virgin olive oil, pass the meatballs until they are well browned.
- Meanwhile we reduce the port wine together with the meat broth in a saucepan until obtaining the sauce texture, it should be very similar to a very soft béchamel. The reduction time is about 10-15 minutes over medium heat.
- In another pan, sauté the chosen nuts with a tablespoon of olive oil. The oil must be hot and this process should not last more than a minute, all we need is for the nuts to release their natural oil and especially its aroma. In this case I have opted for some green pistachios, some walnuts and hazelnuts, but you can dare with cashews and even peanuts.
- Add the dried fruits and leftover oil to the casserole with the Port sauce. We stir with a wooden spoon until they have a little color.
- We pass the meatballs to the casserole over medium heat for about 12-14 minutes so that the meat is impregnated with all the flavor and aroma of the sauce. The sauce is going to be slightly thick (due to the flour) and the meaty meatballs. Imagine the almost liquid cheese when opening the meatball … incredible.
- We accompany it with some green bean noodles. To prepare them we pass the green beans in hot water for about 5 minutes, we take out the thread that they have on the sides and aided by a potato peeler we cut into long strips the size of a noodle. Sauté in the frying pan of the nuts with another tablespoon of olive oil. We reserve for final assembly.
- For your presentation we will use a deep plate or bowl. We put in the bottom a little sauce (it is dipped in bread and do not stop), a meatloaf, some dried fruits on top and, as a hat, a few green bean noodles.
- I usually accompany them with a little spicy basmati rice, but they are also very good.
Accompany this dish with some fried potatoes, another alternative is to make a white rice as a garnish, the white rice is perfect to mix with the meatball sauce and without realizing it you have made a wonderful dinner. Enjoy! Pasta or cooked potatoes are also very good (potatoes go well with everything).
This recipe is a special dish with which you can stay as a king or queen at any family party, with your partner or friends or even as a Christmas dish. Your guests will be amazed.
Be sure to enjoy all the meat recipes that we have on the blog, I assure you that you will find a lot of ideas to make yours much happier. And as I mentioned at the beginning this recipe is a world and nobody has the absolute truth about which are the best meatballs. We encourage you to comment on how you make yours, do you dare with any other filling?
I also recommend these meatballs as one of the perfect tapas, appetizers and pinchos recipes for an unforgettable evening with yours.