New Year’s Eve is approaching and Swedish Meatballs (Köttbullar) are perfect for bite-sized appetizers. Make ‘em, freeze ‘em, bake ‘em and serve them in a chafing dish, crock pot, or fondue pot – whatever you have on hand that will keep these babies warm. I made these on Monday and froze them to be used on Christmas Day – then all I had to do was bake them that afternoon and make the sauce. I like to use a combo of both ground beef and pork when I make the meatballs – and I know some people even add veal for a more rounded flavor.
Use whatever bread you have on hand and make fresh breadcrumbs in a food processor – you will notice the difference, but use the Pulse button so you don’t end up with sawdust. I was in Stockholm last year (see here) and had the most amazing Swedish Meatballs – they were large, very large, as this was an entrée and not an appetizer and tasted absolutely amazing!
As they say in Stockholm:
Gott Nytt Ar!!
(Happy New Year)
3/4 pound ground beef
3/4 pound ground pork
1 cup fresh breadcrumbs (sourdough if you have it)
2/3 cup milk
1 whole egg
1 clove garlic
1 tsp Kosher salt
1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
6 oz cream cheese – cut into small cubes
1/4 cup fresh Italian parsley, chopped finely
1/2 cup half-and-half
3 Tbl unsalted butter
3 Tbl flour
3 Tbl Marsala wine (optional)
1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
1/2 cup low sodium beef broth
Dash of Tabasco Sauce
Dash of celery salt
Dash of onion powder
1/2 cup sour cream
- Pour the fresh breadcrumbs in the milk and let them soak for about 5 minutes till they start to swell. Place ground beef, pork, breadcrumbs/milk mixture, egg, parsley, salt, pepper, minced garlic, and cream cheese into a bowl. Using clean hands mush it altogether till well blended.
- Form small meatballs and place on waxed paper on a cookie sheet and put in the refrigerator for at least one hour, preferably four hours – this will help the meatballs to keep their shape.
- Heat olive oil in pan and add some of the meatballs – don’t crowd the meatballs or they won’t brown well. Remove to paper towel once they are nice and brown. Spray PAM onto a cookie sheet and line up the meatballs – cook them for about 15 minutes on 375 till cooked through. You can also leave them in the frying pan and cook them stove-top but I find they tend to burn on one side and don’t fully cook through.
- Using same frying pan, keep the drippings and add flour to make a roux.
- Whisk into the roux, the half-and-half, beef stock, Marsala wine, Worcestershire Sauce, Tabasco, celery salt, onion powder, and salt until smooth. Cook and stir over low heat until the sauce thickens – takes about 10 minutes. If you have bits of hamburger in your gravy, pour it through a sieve. Take the gravy off the burner and let cool for a minute or two before adding the sour cream. Stir in the meatballs, and continue to cook for about 5 minutes till the meatballs are heated through.
- Place the meatballs with sauce in your serving dish and sprinkle fresh parsley on top and serve.
Traditionally you would serve this with Lingonberry Sauce – if you can’t find in your local grocery store you can always find it at Amazon – 0r substitute Raspberry Preserve in its place