I know I keep saying that I’m not a fan of meatballs.
But meatballs swimming in a pool of thick and creamy gravy? WHOA! Hold the phone! Now that’s a completely different story.
And when it comes to meatballs swimming in a pool of gravy, I say Swedish Meatballs are pretty much where it’s at. Apart from my sacrosanct Pork Shank and Meatball Stew, which I only have once a year at Christmas, nothing can beat them!
Typically, I like to eat my Swedish Meatballs with a generous helping of sweet and tart Cranberry Sauce, but seeing as how I’m trying to keep my carb intake real low these days, I had to pass on it this time. I’ll be honest: I missed it.
One thing I truly didn’t miss though is the sour cream or Greek yogurt that I usually add to the gravy to give it that little bit of a tangy edge… I think that, even while leaving the dairy out, I managed to create a flavor profile that is very true to the real thing, if not better!
Try ‘em for yourself, why don’t you, and tell me what you think!
To start, add all the ingredients for the meatballs to a large mixing bowl and knead well with clean hands to fully combine.
If you don’t like to get your hands dirty, you can also do this in a stand mixer equipped with the paddle attachment. Set the speed to medium and let her rip. This will result in an even better, finer meatball.
Form the meat mixture into approximately 48 meatballs, roughly the size of a ping pong ball. As always, I find a small ice cream scoop really helps to do this quickly and efficiently.
I used to despise making meatballs with every fiber of my heart, but since I’ve discovered that neat little trick, I can *almost* say that I kind of like it now… There’s something fun and strangely addictive about squeezing that pretty looking, spring-loaded spoon.
When you’re done playing with your spoon, erm, making your meatballs, I mean, place a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat and add a liberal amount of cooking fat, preferably lard, to it.
Sear the meatballs until they become nice and golden all around, about 4 to 5 minutes, total. You will probably have to work in batches, so you will want to reserve the partially cooked meatballs to a shallow bowl while you work on the others.
While your meatballs are cooking, add all the ingredients for the gravy to your blender and process on the highest possible speed until completely combined and creamy looking.
Once all the meatballs are cooked, transfer them back to the skillet, along with their cooking juices, and pour the gravy all over them. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and cook the meatballs uncovered for about 20 to 25 minutes on a slow simmer.
Ah, and as you can see, there will be a lot of foam forming at the surface in the beginning.Don’t worry about it, it will eventually blend right in and completely disappear.
See? No more foam. It’s all gone! And as you can probably tell by the picture, I wasn’t exaggerating in the least when I talked about a pool of gravy. I know it looks like there’s a lot, but trust me, you won’t have too much. Besides, this stuff tastes so good, you’ll probably want to drink it by the glassful!
Simply garnish your meatballs with a little bit of fresh parsley and serve to your hungry guests while the dish is still piping hot.
What should you serve this with, you ask?
Well, cranberry sauce, for starters… but I’m thinking a Simple Coleslaw, Cauliflower Rice or Cauliflower Turnip Mash would make brilliant sides. Sauteed mushrooms and greens, such as collards or spinach, also work very well.
They’re also delicious in the morning with sauerkraut and a couple of pan-fried eggs. Mind you, in the opinion of “the world according to Sonia”, pretty much everything goes good with a couple of pan-fried eggs!
One thing I can guarantee you is that I will be making this recipe over and over again. They’re probably the best darn Swedish Meatballs I ever had, including IKEA’s.
I will, however, have to try them with cranberry sauce sometime. My life simply won’t be complete until I have.
Too bad cranberries aren’t in season yet… and not for a while!