In almost every traditional cuisine of the world, you can find a dish resembling our meatballs, minced meat, formed into small balls, can be served in the most unexpected and interesting way.
In Russia and Ukraine, meatballs are most often found in the first courses, although there are exceptions: fried or baked meat balls perfectly complement any second course, though in this case they are often called meatballs. How to know, meatballs and meatballs - is it the same dish or, after all, are there any fundamental differences?
It turns out that they are really close, the only difference is that meatballs can not be filled with something foreign (only meat and spices, maximum eggs), but the meatballs often complement rice, bread, vegetables and others.
And yet, they have no fundamental differences, which means that the recipes for their preparation have long been closely mixed with principles and ingredients.
Meatballs, according to all the rules, should be small, not larger than a large sweet cherry or walnut in diameter, this is necessary so that they can be easily boiled soft and fit comfortably in your mouth from one time. Meatballs - a tasty and simple dish that is easy to cook, even for a novice hostess.
In addition, these meat balls have a considerable list of advantages: simple and affordable ingredients are used for their cooking, they tolerate freezing well, so many housewives prepare them in reserve so that they can quickly and easily cook the first dish.
Plus, they can be an excellent basis for almost any dish, with the help of various additives, sauces and side dishes, it is easy to create new and unusual dishes.
Meat balls can be cooked from any kind of meat, and some housewives use fish with pleasure. Of course, the most delicious meatballs are obtained only from fresh and high-quality meat, however, some experts say that, ideally, they should be cooked from a mixture of several types: for example, pork with beef or lamb with pork.
A few more secrets and recommendations
- In order for the meatball broth not to become covered with an unpleasant greasy film, it is better not to use too fatty meats. For such purposes, the shoulder blade, neck, back, some parts of the back leg, as well as the brisket are ideal. You should not take high-quality and expensive cutting, for example, beef, meatballs can turn out to be rather dry.
- If you use enough lean meat (beef or chicken) in the stuffing, then for its juiciness and tenderness, you can add a little hard cheese, grate it on a fine grater and send it to the total weight, so to speak, of a window into Italian cuisine. In more fatty meats (for example, pork or lamb), you can not add anything, since the mince will turn out quite juicy.
- In order for the meatballs to have an unusual smoked flavor, which is ideal for pea or bean soup, you can add a little smoked meat to the total mass of minced meat.
- In order for the meatballs to be very tender and juicy, they also sometimes add finely chopped onions, if done very finely, then in the final dish it will not be felt at all, but only adds a light aroma and a pleasant texture. You can add both raw and roasted onions.
- In many recipes, it is recommended to add an egg to preserve the tenderness and shape of the balls, but as it turned out, this is not necessary. Just the opposite, if you overdo it with protein, they can turn out to be excessively hard and knocked down, and in order to prevent this from happening, you need to mince several times through a meat grinder with a fine grill. Then knead it well, repel it, after which your meat balls will not fall apart during cooking, by the way, their size will also be affected here: small meatballs will not exactly lose their shape, as can happen with large balls.
- To give the meatballs a special tenderness, you can add a bit of "foreign" ingredients, such as rice, some soaked bread or semolina. Last enough to add a tablespoon of 500 g of meat, it swells and well absorbs meat juice, which makes the meatballs very tender and juicy.
- Many people like meatballs as a second dish, for this they are either fried in a pan until golden brown, and then poured with gravy and stewed to the desired degree of readiness.
- If you decide to bake the meat balls in the oven, then homemade sauces, for example, cranberry, with basil and mint, yoghurt or Tahini sauce, are ideal for them.
- The most useful and dietary meatballs are obtained if they are cooked in a double boiler or a slow cooker - they can be an ideal dish for children or an option for people who need to adhere to strict food or watch their figure.
Meatball Vegetable Soup Recipe
To prepare you will need:
- minced meatballs - 300 g,
- potatoes - 3 pcs.,
- Bulgarian pepper - 1 pc.,
- cabbage - 200 g,
- onions - 1 pc.,
- carrots - 1 pc.,
- tomato - 2 pieces,
- salt, bay leaf, allspice.
Put a three-liter pot of water on the fire, bring to a boil. While the water is heating up, we clean the potatoes, wash and cut them into small cubes, then chop the cabbage, clean the Bulgarian pepper and cut them into small straws. When the water is boiling, then we lay out the potatoes, cabbage and pepper.
While the vegetables are boiling, we begin to form small meatballs, beat them well, send them into the broth. While the soup comes to a boil again, clean the onions and carrots, cut them into small strips, fry in a frying pan and send them back to the pan, boil for another 5-7 minutes.
At the very end add to boiling water, cut into small half rings, tomatoes, salt to taste and add the remaining spices, boil for another 10 minutes.
Swedish meatballs recipe
To prepare you will need:
- minced meat (pork + beef) - 300 g,
- salt, pepper, spices to taste (minced),
- onions - 2 pcs.,
- for the sauce: fatty cream - 50 ml,
- chicken broth - 1 cup,
- salt, pepper, flour.
In the prepared mince add all the spices to taste, knead it well again and proceed to the formation of balls. Fried meatballs fry in butter or sunflower oil with onion until golden brown.
We prepare the sauce separately: fry a tablespoon of flour in butter, add the ready chicken broth, spices and cream. Give the sauce to simmer for 5-7 minutes, then add the meatballs to the pan with the sauce so that they are completely covered with it.
After the balls are baked in the sauce for 10 minutes, the dish is ready. It is best to serve them with chopped dill or green salad.
How to make meatballs
Meatballs can be made from meat or fish stuffing. These balls are especially tasty when they mix two or three kinds of meat and season them with finely chopped onions, garlic, salt, pepper and greens. Most recipes contain eggs and breadcrumbs.
Also in the meatballs, you can add vegetables and cereals to give the dish a bright taste.
Peel the onion and chop it finely.
Place mince in a bowl and add onion to it.
Cut the greens and add to the minced meat.
Break the minced chicken egg. Salt, pepper.
Mix the mass well, so that the stuffing is homogeneous and tender.
To make the meatballs even more tender and give them a creamy taste, add 1 tablespoon of powdered milk or cream to the mince.
You can replace the powder with a combination of butter and soaked white bread. Soak 150 g of breadcrumbs in 100 ml of water or milk for 10 minutes. Drain the excess liquid and add the loaf to the mince. Then send 30 g of butter.
Using wet hands, form the meatballs. Choose the size at your discretion, but remember that the optimal meat ball is 2-3 cm in diameter.