Friday, February 20, 2009

Sweet and Sour Meatballs

I got this recipe from the internet when we first got our computer (late 90's).
I think I'll type it up just as I printed it. It's a Basic Freezer Meatball recipe, then it has a lot of different ways to make them. The trick was to make a really large batch of meatballs to have in your freezer, so anytime you could take them out & make any one of many recipes, like sweet & sour, salisbury, hungarian meatball goulash (I've made this one too), herbed meatballs with noodles, slavic meatballs, and many more. It's a neat idea. And do you know that I printed out the basic meatball recipe & then 8 of the recipes, and it was more that TEN YEARS before I ever tried them?! It's true.
I'm glad I finally got around to trying them, because we really like them.

Basic Freezer Meatballs
4 pounds lean ground beef
2 C. dry bread crumbs
1 T. salt
1/4 t. pepper (I used more)
4 eggs, beaten
1/2 C. onion, chopped finely (I used more)
2 T. cornstarch
2 t. Worcestershire sauce

Preheat oven to 400. Combine all ingredients into a large bowl & mix well, using your hands. Shape mixture into 1-inch meatballs. Place meatballs on ungreased baking sheets and bake for 10-15 minutes until browned. Drain on paper towels.

To freeze, first flash freeze: Place meatballs on cookie sheets (not touching) and place cookie sheet in freezer until meatballs are frozen. Then place frozen meatballs in freezer bags & return to the freezer.
hint: freeze them 24 meatballs per freezer bag. That is usually the amount called for in the recipes, or if you use your own recipe, 24 meatballs is a nice amount for a recipe.

Yield: about 144 meatballs. *

I didn't make this big recipe, I halved it using only 2 pounds of ground beef, so I should have made around 72 meatballs. I only got 56 meatballs, so I must have made mine a little bigger. I divided them into 2 freezer bags so I could have 2 different recipes.

Sweet and Sour Meatballs
"This is not that sticky red sauce, but a sophisticated contrast of sweet and sour flavors and interesting textures. Serve these Oriental inspired meatballs with white rice." (not my quote, but quote from the original recipe.)

20 oz. can pineapple chunks in juice
1/2 C. water
1/4 C. cider vinegar
1/4 C. brown sugar
1 t. soy sauce
2 T. cornstarch
1 small green pepper, cut into 1/2 inch squares
5 oz. sliced water chestnuts (I didn't have these)
24 frozen meatballs

Drain the pineapple chunks, reserving 3/4 C. of juice (if there is not enough, add water to make 3/4C. ) Combine juice, additional 1/2 C. water, vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar and cornstarch in a medium saucepan and stir until sugar and cornstarch doissolve. Cook over low heat until thick and bubbling, stirring constantly. Add green peppers, meatballs, water chestmuts & 1 C. pineabble chunks ( use the rest elsewhere). Heat until meatballs are hot, stirring frequently. Serve with white rice.

We really liked this recipe. It was the kind of sweet & sour recipe that I've been looking for for years. Funny that it's been in my recipe binder for more than 10 years!
I'll post the recipe for the Hungarian Meatball Goulash soon.

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