I was watching an episode of Throwdown with Bobby Flay one day, and the challenge of the show was meatballs. I rarely make meatballs because I can’t ever seem to get the texture just right. An old family recipe that I have calls for soaking Italian bread in milk, then squeezing all of the milk out, and using that in lieu of dried bread crumbs. No, thank you! In the meatball throwdown, the guest chef’s recipe called for dried bread crumbs, so I decided to give them a try.
These are probably the best meatballs I’ve ever had (apologies to my grandmother and great aunts).
However, I got a little confused when trying to prepare and measure my ingredients. The chef’s measurements are by weight rather than by cup, etc. So I pulled out my kitchen scale and used it to measure my dry ingredients. Do you know how much chopped fresh parsley and basil is needed to make up four ounces? A lot. I realized about halfway through my herb chopping that I was going to need a lot more than I had AND that I should have used the food processor! So I didn’t have nearly as many fresh herbs as the recipe called for, but my meatballs came out fine. Just be prepared to have a lot of each ingredient and your food processor (or private professional sous chef with mad knife skills) on hand.
I’m sure that what makes these meatballs so delicious and moist is that there is SO MUCH other stuff (and four eggs) in the mixture besides the ground beef. I made a batch of these and am storing the extras in the freezer. They’re great to have on hand for quick dinners of spaghetti and meatballs or meatball subs.
Source: Adapted from Mike Maroni/The Food Network
1 pound ground chuck
4 ounces dried bread crumbs (about 1 cup)
4 large eggs
4 ounces whole milk
6 ounces grated Romano
3 ounces grated Spanish onion (about 1/4 of a large onion)
1 1/2 ounces finely diced fresh garlic (about 10 cloves)
2 ounces finely chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves (about 1 1/2 bunches)
2 ounces finely chopped fresh basil leaves (about 2-3 cups packed leaves)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a baking sheet with olive oil cooking spray.
Mix all ingredients thoroughly in large bowl. If mixture seems a little loose add more bread crumbs.
Roll meatballs loosely about the size of a golf ball and place on baking sheet. Place into preheated oven for approximately 35 to 40 minutes or until completely cooked through.
The meatballs can be stored in a zip top plastic bag in the freezer for a few months. Bake directly from the freezer until done (note: add about 5-10 minutes cooking time), or thaw overnight in the refrigerator before baking as directed above.