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A Super Holiday Appetizer – Scallion Meatballs with Soy-Ginger Glaze

Finding just the right appetizers when you are hosting a holiday party or having everyone over for a holiday meal can always seem like a challenge. You want to go beyond just having cheese and crackers or chips and dip and want to put out something memorable that makes a great snack before the main entrée or a fantastic addition to a buffet table. One of my favorites is to always do something different with meatballs. You can do so many different things with meatballs and a great sauce and then all you need is a platter and some toothpicks and you have the perfect finger food. I came across this recipe recently from the New York Times and decided to try out the recipe for scallion meatballs with a soy-ginger glaze. I initially made a batch and we had some for dinner that night and I froze the rest to have on hand for appetizers at a later date. They are easy to make, make great use of turkey and the glaze is out of this world.

Scallion Meatballs with Soy-Ginger Glaze

For the Sauce:

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup soy sauce

1/2 cup mirin sweet rice wine, or 1/2 cup sake with 1/4 cup sugar

1/4 cup chopped peeled ginger

1 teaspoon ground coriander

4 whole black peppercorns

For the Meatballs:

1 pound ground turkey

4 large or 6 small scallions, finely chopped

1 bunch cilantro, finely chopped (about 1 cup)

1 egg, lightly beaten

2 tablespoons sesame oil

2 tablespoons soy sauce

Freshly ground black pepper

Vegetable oil

To make the sauce, bring the brown sugar and 1/2 cup of water to a boil in a saucepan set over medium-high heat, stirring the mixture until the sugar melts completely. Reduce the heat to medium-low and add the soy sauce, mirin, chopped ginger, coriander and the peppercorns. Simmer, stirring the sauce occasionally, until the sauce has been reduced by about half, about 30 minutes. Strain the sauce through a sieve to remove the solids and discard the solids.

To make the meatballs, mix the ground turkey, scallions, cilantro, beaten egg, sesame oil and the soy sauce and several grinds of black pepper in a bowl. Roll tablespoons of the mixture together into balls. in a skillet set over medium-high heat, generously coat the bottom of the pan with vegetable oil. Working in batches to avoid crowding the pan, place the meatballs in the pan and cook, turning, until the meatballs are browned all over and cooked through inside, about 8 minutes per batch. Arrange the meatballs on a heated platter and spoon a little sauce over each meatball and serve the meatballs with toothpicks. If desired, keep the meatballs in the sauce warm in a 200 degree oven until you are ready to serve.

The meatballs themselves are very tasty with the scallions adding a nice layer of flavor to them, but the sauce is the real winner in this dish. The ginger, soy sauce and mirin really stand out to make the sauce sweet and a little sticky and packed with flavor. I could see using this sauce over a variety of other items, such as a pork tenderloin or pork chops or even chicken pieces or boneless chicken breasts. The meatballs are a perfect appetizer for any type of party and you can make them and keep them warm until you are ready for the party.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

soy glazed meatballs

 
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Posted by on December 16, 2014 in Appetizers, Cooking, Dinner, Gravy, Holidays, Poultry, Sauce, Turkey

 

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Make a Mess of These Meatball Sliders

I am always on the lookout for different meatball recipes. It is just one of those meal items that I like to tinker with and I am looking to add new flavors to meatballs to jazz them up a little bit. Whether it is for a simple meal with spaghetti in tomato sauce, as an appetizer for a buffet or party, to have in gravy over rice or noodles or to make a nice sub or sandwich meatballs are one of those things that you can do a lot of things with and make them in wide variety of ways with many different ingredients. I came upon this recipe from Alton Brown for meatball sandwiches on Parmesan parsley biscuits and thought it sounded great, but to me they are perfect meatball sliders for an appetizer, party or dinner. it’s a very easy recipe that gives you some basic meatballs with great tasting biscuits and a nice spaghetti sauce to boot.

Alton Brown’s Meatball Sandwiches (Meatball Sliders)

For the Meatballs:

1 pound ground beef
1 pound ground pork
1 pound ground veal
1 egg
1/2 small onion, chopped
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Parmesan Parsley Biscuits, recipe follows
Spaghetti Sauce, recipe follows
Provolone cheese, thinly sliced

For the Parmesan Parsley Biscuits:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup grated Parmesan
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 stick chilled unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley or chives
1 cup whole milk, chilled

For the Spaghetti Sauce:
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 (14-ounce) cans diced tomatoes
20 fresh basil leaves, chopped

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

For the meatballs,in a large bowl, combine the beef, pork, veal, egg, onion, parsley, garlic, oregano, salt, and pepper and mix all of the ingredients until they are well combined. Scoop the mixture into mini muffin tins or onto a wire rack set over a rimmed baking sheet. Bake the meatballs until they are browned and cooked through, about 15 to 20 minutes.

For the Parmesan parsley biscuits:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, 1/2 cup of the Parmesan, sugar, baking powder, salt, and pepper. Whisk until everything is well blended. Add the butter and combine the mixture with your fingertips until a coarse meal forms. Mix in the parsley. Gradually add the milk, tossing the mixture with a fork until moist clumps form. Add extra milk if the mixture is too dry. Put the dough on a floured work surface, folding 8 to 10 times until it becomes firm. Let the dough rest for 10 minutes under a damp towel. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured work surface. Using a 2-inch-diameter biscuit ring, cut out the biscuits and put them on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle the tops of the biscuits with the remaining 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese and bake until the biscuits are puffed and golden, about 15 minutes.

For the spaghetti sauce, in a medium pan set over high heat, saute the onion and the garlic in olive oil until both are softened, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes and allow the mixture to simmer until it is slightly reduced and thickened, about 25 minutes. Stir in the fresh basil just before serving.

To build the sliders, slice a biscuit in half and place a meatball on the bottom half of the biscuit. Cover the meatball with as much spaghetti sauce as you like and top each meatball with a slice a provolone cheese. Place the biscuit top on top of the meatball and continue until all of the biscuits are filled.

I have to say I really liked these. While the meatball recipe is very basic, it does taste good and produces a moist meatball that goes well with the sauce. The real star of this one I think is the Parmesan biscuit, which comes out perfectly and goes really nicely with the meatballs as a slider. The biscuit has great flavor and is really easy to make so you can make this to go with other meals besides this one. we even used some to make breakfast sandwiches with some bacon or sausage and egg. Of course the meatballs and sauce can be for anything that you would use meatballs for as well besides just sliders if you want a nice, basic and easy meatball recipe.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

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A Chilly Day Calls for Spaghetti and Meatballs for a Crowd

I know it’s not the ideal start to a long weekend when two days ago it was 85° out and I was looking to turn the air conditioner on and then we wake up this morning and it’s 42° outside and windy and rainy. Since the weekend doesn’t look like it’s going to get any better until Monday, today is a good day to do a recipe for a classic spaghetti and meatballs. This recipe, from Cook’s Illustrated, is designed if you’re cooking for a large crowd so you want to keep that in mind if you are going to use this recipe. When I do it for just the three of us I generally have to adjust it down a little bit and we still end up with enough sauce and meatballs left over where we can freeze some for another several meals.

Classic Spaghetti and Meatballs for a Crowd

Meatballs

2 1/4 cups panko bread crumbs
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
3 tablespoons water
2 pounds 85% lean ground beef
1 pound ground pork
3 large eggs
3 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated
6 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Sauce

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, grated
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3 (28-ounce) cans crushed tomatoes
6 cups tomato juice
6 tablespoons dry white wine
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup minced fresh basil
3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
Sugar

3 pound spaghetti
2 tablespoons salt
Grated Parmesan cheese

For the meatballs: adjust oven racks to the lower-middle and upper-middle positions and heat the oven to 450°. Set wire racks into aluminum foil-lined rimmed baking sheets and spray the racks with vegetable oil spray.

Combine the bread crumbs and the buttermilk in a large bowl and let sit, mashing occasionally with a fork, until a smooth paste forms, about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, sprinkle the gelatin over the water in a small bowl and allow it to soften for 5 minutes.

Mix the ground beef, ground pork, eggs, Parmesan, parsley, garlic, salt, pepper, and gelatin mixture into the bread crumb mixture using your hands. Pinch off and roll the mixture into 2-inch meatballs (about 40 meatballs total) and arrange on the prepared baking sheets. Bake until the meatballs are well browned, about 30 minutes, switching and rotating the baking sheets halfway through the baking process.

For the sauce: while the meatballs bake, heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat until shimmering. Add the onion and cook until softened and lightly browned, about 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the garlic, oregano and pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in the crushed tomatoes, tomato juice, wine, 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper, bring to a simmer, and cook until the sauce thickens slightly, about 15 minutes.

Remove the meatballs from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 300°. Gently nestled the meatballs into the sauce. Cover, transfer to the oven, and cook until the meatballs are firm and the sauce has thickened, about one hour. The sauce in the meatballs can be cooled and refrigerated for up to 2 days. To re-heat, drizzle 1/2 cup of water over the sauce, without stirring, and re-heat on the lower-middle rack of a 325° oven for 1 hour.

Meanwhile, bring 10 quarts of water to a boil in a large 12-quart pot. Add the pasta and salt and cook, stirring often, until al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water, then drain the pasta and return it to the pot.

Gently stir the basil and parsley into the sauce and season with sugar, salt, and pepper to taste. Add 2 cups of sauce (without meatballs) to the pasta and toss to combine. Add the reserved cooking water as needed to adjust the consistency. Serve, topping the individual portions with more tomato sauce and several meatballs and passing the Parmesan cheese

As I said, this recipe makes a lot of food. They outline it as having enough to serve 12 people, but if you make the full recipe I think it could even serve more than that. I have always gotten more than 40 meatballs out of the recipe so we always have plenty left over for uses down the road. Their recipe also calls for some prosciutto to be used in the meatball mixture, which I leave out. I do like the way that the meatballs come out when they are baked in the oven and then the entire concoction with the sauce is placed in the oven again. The thickness of the sauce and the taste of the meatballs seems to be a lot better to me. You could easily served this with any type of pasta that you wish and I love to make some garlic bread to go along with it.

That’s the recipe for today. We did some shopping this morning so I did get a few things and to make over the next few days or so. Tonight I’ll be making a pork tenderloin dinner so you can check back for the recipe on that one. I also picked up some baby back ribs and the makings for some meatloaf so will be having those this week as well. I do plan to head up to Adams and see if they have anything else interesting that we might use for dinner this week. Check back and see what we come up with. Until then, enjoy the rest of your rainy day and enjoy your meal!

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Posted by on May 25, 2013 in Beef, Cooking, Dinner, Pasta, Sauce

 

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Making Good Use of Those Extra Meatballs

Yesterday I made a big try of meatballs so Michelle could use some in her Italian Wedding Soup. Since we still had a lot left to use, we decided to put some in sauce and simmer them and then make some meatball sub sandwiches. Sean opted to have just spaghetti and meatballs, but I made a sub for myself on some garlic bread.

Meatball Sub Sandwiches

For the meatballs:

2 slices of white bread (use good white bread for this)

1/3 cup buttermilk

3/4 pound ground beef

1/4 pound ground  pork

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

1 large egg yolk

1 garlic clove, minced

Salt and pepper

For the sauce:

3 tablespoons olive oil

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes

1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes

3 tablespoons minced fresh basil (if you’re using dried basil, cut this in at least half)

1/4 teaspoon sugar

Salt

For the garlic bread:

1 loaf Italian bread or French bread

4 tablespoons butter, softened (use less if you like, I often do)

2 teaspoons olive oil

3 cloves garlic, crushed

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (or other cheese of your liking, or no cheese at all, it’s optional)

Fresh mozzarella, sliced for the sandwiches

For the meatballs, remove and discard the crusts from the bread, then tear the bread into small pieces. Mash the bread pieces and buttermilk to a smooth paste in a large bowl, using a fork.

Add the beef, pork, Parmesan, parsley, yolk, garlic, 3/4 teaspoon of salt, and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper to the mashed bread. Stir the mixture gently until combined and uniform. Gently form the mixture into 1-inch round meatballs ( I made them smaller this time for the soup we made).

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the meatballs on a wire rack in a cookie sheet or roasting pan. Cook for approximately 20 to 30 minutes or until well browned.

For the sauce, cook the oil and garlic in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring often until fragrant but not browned, about 2 minutes (don’t scorch the garlic, it tastes pretty bad when you do. As soon as you can smell it, you’re ready for the next step). Stir in the crushed tomatoes and diced tomatoes with their juice. Bring to a simmer and cook until slightly thickened, 15 to 20 minutes. Stir in the basil and sugar. Season with salt to taste. Add the meatballs to the sauce and simmer until the meatballs are heated through, about 10 minutes.

For the garlic bread, preheat the broiler. Cut the loaf of bread in half lengthwise. In a small bowl, mix the butter, oil, garlic and oregano. Spread the mixture evenly on the bread. On a baking sheet, place the bread under the broiler for 3-5 minutes, or until slightly browned. Check frequently to make sure it doesn’t burn. Remove from the broiler and serve, or, if using the cheese, sprinkle cheese over the bread and place under the broiler for another 2 minutes, or until cheese is melted and slightly brown.

To assemble the sandwich, place as many meatballs as you desire on the bread. Cover the meatballs with some extra sauce and add some slices of fresh mozzarella. Place the sandwich back under the broiler for 1 to 2 minutes until the cheese is melted.

Of course, there are always variations on this. I don’t eat cheese, so my sandwich went without. Michelle only wanted a small sandwich so she could have some pasta too, so she only had a half sandwich. You could also add some Italian sausage to the mix and have them on the sandwich as well.

It’s a great use of some leftovers. Everyone loves a good sub sandwich, and having this one on the toasted garlic bread makes it even better.

I think I am going to make some shrimp tomorrow, although I am not sure how I am going to do it just yet. Check back and see what I come up with. until then, enjoy your evening and enjoy your meal!

 

 
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Posted by on August 13, 2012 in Beef, Breads, Cooking, Dinner, Sandwiches, Sauce

 

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My Sweetie is in the Kitchen Making Soup

When it comes to making soup in our family, I have to cede the kitchen to Michelle. She makes great soups of all kinds, all year round. I had just made some chicken stock earlier in the week, using the chicken carcasses we had used to make dinner last Sunday, so we were trying to come up with a soup to make. Michelle has been having an itch for some Italian Wedding Soup, so she decided that was what she was going to make today.

Italian Wedding Soup

For the meatballs:

2 slices of white bread (use good white bread for this)

1/3 cup buttermilk

3/4 pound ground beef

1/4 pound ground  pork

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

1 large egg yolk

1 garlic clove, minced

Salt and pepper

For the soup:

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 cup minced onion

3 carrots, peeled and diced

1 celery stalk, diced

5 cups chicken stock

1/2 cup white wine

1 cup of small pasta (Michelle actually used orzo this time around)

12 ounces spinach, washed and trimmed

For the meatballs, remove and discard the crusts from the bread, then tear the bread into small pieces. Mash the bread pieces and buttermilk to a smooth paste in a large bowl, using a fork.

Add the beef, pork, Parmesan, parsley, yolk, garlic, 3/4 teaspoon of salt, and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper to the mashed bread. Stir the mixture gently until combined and uniform. Gently form the mixture into 1-inch round meatballs ( I made them smaller this time for the soup).

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the meatballs on a wire rack in a cookie sheet or roasting pan. Cook for approximately 20 to 30 minutes or until well browned.

For the soup, heat the olive oil in a large heavy-bottomed soup pot. Add the onion, carrots and celery and saute until softened, 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the chicken stock and wine and bring to a boil. Add the pasta to the simmering broth and cook for 6 to 8 minutes, until the pasta is tender. Add the meatballs to the soup and simmer for one minute. Add salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the fresh spinach and cook for 1 minute, until the spinach is just wilted. Ladle into soup bowls and sprinkle with extra grated Parmesan cheese.

This recipe makes a lot of soup. The original recipe is double what I have shown here, but we halved it and it still made enough soup for dinner tonight and filled storage containers for 4 or 5 lunches, so you can get a lot mileage out of this one. it made the entire house smell great while it was  cooking. You could use any type of small pasta that you like for this soup, we just happen to have orzo on hand so we decided to use that instead. The other nice thing was I made extra meatballs so we have some to use for some sauce for a dinner this week.

Okay, it’s really hot and humid here today, so I am going to slip into the air conditioning in the bedroom and relax for the rest of the evening. I do have some recipes planned for this week using shrimp, chicken and maybe some squid. We’ll see if anything comes up along the way. Until next time, enjoy your evening and enjoy your meal!

 
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Posted by on August 12, 2012 in Cooking, Dinner, Soups & Stews

 

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A Wonderful Weekend Meal of Spaghetti and Mussels

I had been looking at the fresh mussels in the market the last several weeks I have gone there but I didn’t buy any because it would have been too many for just Michelle and myself. I decided to break down and bought some yesterday to have for dinner and bot am I glad I did. There were so good, and this recipe is just a perfect way to make them. Make sure you have some good, crunchy bread around to help soak up some of the delicious broth that you get from the meal.

Spaghetti and Mussels with Tomato and Basil

Salt, to taste

6 ounces spaghetti (I used fettuccine, that’s what we had on hand, but anything you like will do)

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 large shallot, minced

1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 pound mussels

1/3 cup dry white wine

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

3/4 pound cherry tomatoes, halved

1/2 cup slivered fresh basil

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Bring a large pot three-fourths full of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta, stir well and cook until al dente, about 11 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large, heavy fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the shallot and red pepper flakes and saute until the shallot is almost tender, about 2 minutes. Add the mussels, wine and lemon zest. Cover the pan and cook until the mussel shells begin to open, about 4 minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring frequently, until they start to soften, about 2 minutes. Discard any mussels that do not open.

Drain the pasta and transfer it to a warmed large, shallow bowl. Pour the mussels and sauce over the pasta. Add the basil and the extra-virgin olive oil and toss to coat the pasta. Season with salt and black pepper and serve immediately.

Just a couple of quick tips regarding the mussels. If you have never purchased mussels before, you want to look shells that are tightly closed or close when they are tapped. Avoid any cracked or broken shells or any that are just sitting in a puddle of water. Make sure they smell clean. If they don’t, you don’t want them at all. You so need to scrub them before cooking, and you may even need to de-beard them. All that is is a little weedy piece sticking out between the shells. You can give them a quick tug out or use a paring knife and cut it off. Very few of those I bought had a beard. Expect a few not to open when you cook them. It’s perfectly okay, it happens in every batch, but if they don’t open, don’t eat them. You don’t need the stomach problems you’ll have later on if you do eat them. I served the meal with a small, simple salad with some balsamic vinaigrette.

I also had a small batch of ground beef so I decided to make a few meatballs to have around since Sean is coming home and loves them with his pasta. I use a very simple recipe from America’s Test Kitchen and they come out great.

Meatballs

2 slices of white bread (use good white bread for this)

1/3 cup buttermilk

3/4 pound ground beef

1/4 pound ground  pork

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

1 large egg yolk

1 garlic clove, minced

Salt and pepper

Remove and discard the crusts from the bread, then tear the bread into small pieces. Mash the bread pieces and buttermilk to a smooth paste in a large bowl, using a fork.

Add the beef, pork, Parmesan, parsley, yolk, garlic, 3/4 teaspoon of salt, and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper to the mashed bread. Stir the mixture gently until combined and uniform. Gently form the mixture into 1-inch round meatballs ( I got about 20 out of the mix)

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the meatballs on a wire rack in a cookie sheet or roasting pan. Cook for approximately 10 to 12 minutes or until well browned. Remove them from the oven and either place in tomato sauce or brown gravy and serve.

It’s very easy and simple and tastes quite good. The recipe calls for a mix of beef and pork, but I only used beef this time and they came out fine. Baking them on the wire rack helps keep them from sitting in any fat and they brown nicely all over.

That’s it for today. I got a number of things at the market last week, a lot of chicken, so we’ll see what I can come up with for the week. Until then, enjoy this beautiful day and enjoy your meal!

 

 
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Posted by on July 22, 2012 in Beef, Cooking, Dinner, Pasta, Seafood

 

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Some Super Sunday Snack Food

The Super Bowl is coming this weekend (in case anyone wasn’t aware) and whether you’re rooting for the Giants, the Patriots, Madonna or the TV commercials, you want to have some great snack food to eat while watching. When we’re home for the day, we like to just make snack foods for dinner that day. It’s fun to get to eat a little bit of a bunch of different things. If you have some guests over, you can even put out a bigger spread. Lots of people buy 3-foot heroes, wings or pizza and are happy with that, but I like to make my own things and some things that guests may enjoy. Some things we have already made for past meal plans that can be good items to use, like pizza, guacamole, turkey meatballs, some buffet-style dishes like shrimp scampi or pepper steak, or even mini versions of the hamburgers for sliders. I am going to post a couple of recipes of things I plan to make, Buffalo Wings, Swedish Meatballs and one of Sean’s favorites,  Bacon & Cheese Pinwheels. I’ll also give you some links to other sites that have some great ideas for game time, party time, or any time snacks.

Just about everyone likes to have Buffalo wings and there are lots of different recipes you can follow. One thing I like about good wings is that they are both crispy and spicy. I have made wings baked in the oven before, and they are good, but there is something about deep-frying that adds great crispness to the wings. For this recipe, I am deep-frying. I have a deep fryer at home, so it makes it a little easier for me as far as bringing up temperature and avoiding splattering oil, both concerns when you are doing it on the stove in a Dutch oven. Use a candy thermometer to determine the temperature of the oil and make sure you use a deep pot to avoid bubbling oil. And yes, I buy whole wings and cut them myself; I hate the idea of paying more for wings that are already cut when I could just as easily do it myself with a cleaver or some poultry shears.

Buffalo Wings

3 pounds whole chicken wings

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter

1/2 cup hot sauce (I like to use Frank’s Louisiana Hot Sauce, or Ken’s Wing Sauce, but use whatever taste and heat you like)

2 tablespoons Tabasco (optional, if you want some extra heat)

1 tablespoon dark brown sugar

2 teaspoons cider vinegar

1 to 2 quarts vegetable oil (for frying)

3 tablespoons cornstarch

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon pepper

1 teaspoon salt

4 ribs celery, cut into thin sticks

2 carrots, peeled and cut into thin sticks Blue Cheese or Ranch dressing (store-bought is fine, our house prefers ranch. You could always use the Ranch recipe I posted

Cut the wings apart at the joints and discard the wing tips. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Whisk in the hot sauce, Tabasco (if using), brown sugar, and  vinegar. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Heat the oven to 200 degrees. Heat 2 1/2 inches of oil in a large Dutch oven, with a candy thermometer attached to the side, over high heat until it measures 360 degrees.

Meanwhile, mix the cornstarch, cayenne, pepper and salt together in a large bowl. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels, then toss evenly with the cornstarch mixture. Add half the wings to the hot oil and fry until golden, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a baking sheet lined with several layers of paper towels and keep warm in the oven while repeating with the remaining wings.

Toss the fried wings and sauce together in a large bowl until thoroughly coated. Serve with the celery, carrots and dressing of choice on the side.

The fried, unsauced wings can be kept warm in the oven for up to 1 1/2 hours. Toss them with the sauce before serving.

For the Swedish meatballs, I am using a recipe that was given to Michelle at her wedding shower by my grandmother. She knew I really liked it and passed it on to her. It’s not a tough recipe, but there’s some work involved in this one. Trust me, it’s really worth it. The meatballs taste great.

Swedish Meatballs

20 gingersnaps

1/2 cup milk

1 egg, slightly beaten

2 pounds beef, pork and veal mixture

1/4 cup finely chopped onion

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon celery salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/2 teaspoon allspice

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter

1/4 cup flour

1-2 cups beef broth

Crush the gingersnaps in a food processor or with a rolling pin. Mix the milk, egg, meat mixture, onion, salt, celery salt, pepper and allspice until blended thoroughly. Form the mixture into small “cocktail” size meatballs. In a large skillet over medium-high heat melt the butter until starting to brown. Add the meatballs and cook thoroughly until browned on all size, about 5-7 minutes (you’ll have to do this in batches). Remove meatballs from the pan and stir in flour, whisking constantly until well blended and brown, about 3-5 minutes. Gradually whisk in the beef broth, scraping up any browned bits and bring to a boil. Add the meatballs back into the pan with the gravy and simmer until heated through and thickened, about 5 minutes.

The last item I am making is Sean’s favorite, Bacon Cheddar Pinwheels. This is a Pillsbury recipe that is very easy to make. You can go to their website and get this and other recipes, but I will also provide the recipe right here.

Bacon Cheddar Pinwheels
1 can (8 oz) Pillsbury® refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
tablespoons ranch dressing
1/4 cup cooked real bacon pieces or 4 slices bacon, crisply cooked, crumbled
1/2 cup finely shredded Cheddar cheese (2 oz)
1/4 cup chopped green onions (4 medium, optional. I usually leave them out; Sean doesn’t like them)
Heat oven to 350°F. Unroll dough and separate into 2 long rectangles; press each into 12×4-inch rectangle, firmly pressing perforations to seal. Spread dressing over each rectangle to edges. Sprinkle each with bacon, cheese and onions. Starting with 1 short side, roll up each rectangle; press edge to seal. With serrated knife, cut each roll into 8 slices; place cut side down on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 12 to 17 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Immediately remove from cookie sheet. Serve warm.
There are so many other things you can make for football parties, or any party. Here are a few links to places that you can find some recipes:
Epicurious – They have some great part recipes as well as some recommendations on beer and cocktails for your party.
Food Network – Always a good source for recipes anyway, but they have a section just on big game day recipes.
Bon Appetit – Another good source for recipes all the time, but they have a section for the game with their take on wings, chili, and more.
Williams-Sonoma – another great site, with lots of game day celebration recipes.
Hopefully this gives you lots of good ideas for game day. Do you have any game day snacks that you love to cook? Let me know! Post a comment on it and share with all of us. Tomorrow is back to cooking. it’s the end of the week and we are making Fish and Chips for dinner. I’ll also be letting you know about next week’s meal plan. I will let you know that we let Sean pick the whole week next week and he is going to help cook it, so you’ll be interested to see what he chose. Until then, enjoy your day!

 

 
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Posted by on February 2, 2012 in Appetizers, Beef, Cooking, Poultry

 

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Jennifer Probst

a little bit naughty a little bit nice

Laissez Faire

Letting Life Lead

simple cooking recipes

a blog to share with you the best

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