Wednesday, December 8, 2010

German Meatballs with Egg Noodles

Adapted from The Joy of Cooking
Serves 4-6
Printable recipe here: click

One 1-inch-thick slice of bread
1 pound ground beef, pork, or combination of the two
2 eggs, beaten
1 Tbsp butter
1/4 cup finely chopped onions
1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
3 Tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp grated (or minced) lemon rind
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
5 cups chicken or vegetable stock

For gravy:
4 Tablespoons butter
1/2 cup flour
2 Tbsp sour cream
2 Tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley

Soak the slice of bread in enough milk to just cover it. Melt the butter and use it to saute the onions until they are golden. Put the stock in a pot with a lid (stockpot or everyday pan would be ideal) and bring it to a boil. While it's coming to a boil, gently wring the milk from the bread and crumble it into a bowl with the eggs, meat, sauteed onions, breadcrumbs, and seasonings. Use your hands to combine the ingredients (do it!). Gently shape the mixture into roughly 2-inch balls and drop them into the boiling stock. Reduce to a hearty simmer and cook, covered, for 15-20 minutes. Remove the meatballs from the stock and set aside.

For the gravy: Add butter and flour to the stock and whisk until smooth. Cook until gravy. When it's reached a gravy consistency, add sour cream and parsley. Add a little salt and pepper, if you like. Return the meatballs to the pan to reheat.

While the meatballs are cooking and reheating, boil some water and cook your egg noodles according to the directions on the package.

Ladle the meatballs and gravy over a pile of noodles, sprinkle with a few breadcrumbs, and enjoy!


I can't claim this is an authentic recipe, but I can claim it is delicious. I made it with all pork, rather than a combination of pork and beef, and I was thrilled with the result. It's strange to use a words like "silky" and "rich" to describe a meatball, but they really were silky and rich. We had two each and that was plenty. Because it's got such a mellow flavor (and noodles!), it's great for kids. We chose fresh, steamed green beans as a side dish, but any slightly crunchy vegetable would be delightful (steamed broccoli, baked zucchini...cauliflower, maybe?). Even a pile of romaine with a simple vinaigrette would be great. It took about 45 minutes to make, but I'm guessing I could whip it up in less than thirty minutes the second time around.

Now I just need to find a tasty German dessert to round out the meal...

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