Blog of an aspiring foodie

Red wine meatballs

Posted by beer_chris on 17-July-2006

Felt like red wine meatballs tonight, thought I had a recipe in my pantry but turned out I did not, so I combined a little from here and a meatball and tomato sauce recipe from Nigella Lawson I pulled off of the Fine Living website a few years ago when her show was still being broadcast there – it's printed so I don't have a link.

For the meatballs:
1/2 a loaf stale french bread (broken) (8 oz)
1 1/2 cup whole milk
1 1/2 lbs ground beef
2 tbsp fennel seed (whole)
2 tbsp dried oregano
1 tbsp green peppercorns (whole)
1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
1 tsp salt
1/4 c Bordeaux
1-2 cups grated cheese (parmesan, romano, I used dried out Gruyere and Romano)
2 eggs

For the sauce:
1 cup + 1/4 cup Bordeaux
1 cup beef broth
1/4 c + 1 tbsp unsalted butter
1/4 c flour
2 tsp onion powder

Soak the bread in the milk in a pie plate until reasonably soft (about 15 minutes). Squeeze out the milk and place the bread in a bowl. Combine bread with the ground beef, fennel seed, oregano, peppercorns, garlic, salt, wine, cheese & eggs. Mush it all together with your hands. Puree in the food processor in as many batches as necessary. Preheat the oven to 350. Hand form the meatballs as large as you like (cooking times here are for meatballs of about 2-3 tbsp in size – I made about 27 with that size). Cook at 350 for 30-35 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine 2 cups of the Bordeaux, the stock and the tomato paste in a saucepan and put on low heat. Put a couple of grindings of fresh pepper in the saucepan as well. Start a roux with 1/4 c of butter and the flour. Allow to brown fully (about 10 minutes). Add the onion powder and a few grindings of pepper and stir to combine. Add the wine and broth mixture. Reduce over medium heat until thickened. Just before serving, polish with an additional tbsp of butter and a 1/4 cup of Bordeaux. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed.

Drink the rest of the wine with dinner 😉

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