I kinda discovered this little trick by accident, last Christmas, as I was preparing my husbands recipe for gluten-free meatballs. Instead of using bread crumbs to bind the meat into nice balls, grated carrots to the same job.
We were having friends round for dinner and he had promised to be home early to make the meatballs (he wanted them and they were His recipe). Well, 30 minutes before said guests were expected to arrive there was still no sign of the
I h-h-h-hate the feel of minced beef. So if I need to use it I try not to touch it with my actual hands. But with meatballs, you need to handle the meat. So I had to suck it up.
While I knew his general recipe, I was standing in-front of my spice rack wondering what spices to use in the mix... when I happened upon the best idea I have had in a while... Curry Powder. This one tiny addition make such a difference.
So now its my recipe, for Mommy's Meatballs. And I have no problem getting dirty to make it.
There is no "real" recipe. It evolves every time I make it, depending on what is in the cupboard or how I am feeling. So this is a rough guide. You can't really get it wrong.
I am pretty heavy handed with the spices and it does give the nicest richest taste, which is something that meatballs sometimes lack. The carrots are genious as they stop the meat from drying out while cooking. And cos they are grated finely, they are hidden veggies for tiny people. Bonus.
500g of minced beef. I like 90% lean
half one large onion
2 med carrots
1 beef stock cube
1 large pinch salt
1 large pinch of white pepper
1heaped tsp Mustard Powder
1 heaped tsp Bacon flavoured Salt (optional)
1tsp Garlic granules
3 heaped tsp Curry powder.
1 good squeeze of bovril or 1 tsp marmite.
Preheat oven to 180DegC/Gas 4/ Fahrenheit
Peel the carrots and grate finely. Chop the onion finely and add to the carrots.
Once it looks like its all coming together in a big ball then you are ready to start rolling.
Pinch off enough mix to make a good sized meatball. Not too big, because that will just fall apart. You can make loads of small bite-sized ones or a good few medium ones.
I make medium ones for the adults, and a good few mini's for the kids. Big enough to pop into little mouths whole. No mess, no fuss, no digging for hidden veggies.
Place on a foil lined baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes.
If you want Indi-lian meatballs (indian italian), place the meatballs closer together on the baking sheet, and after 30 minutes of cooking, pour 1 jar of Dolmio Bolognaise Sauce over the meatballs and bake for a further 15 minutes.
Serve with salad, garlic bread, or Baked beans as my husband decided :)