Wednesday, May 26, 2010
This is a new discovery for Rick. It was with trepidation that I started adding cold meatballs to the salad at all, thinking that he would object because they were new and therefore "uncouth." I underestimated him. They are the nuggets of heaven and can be broken up, sliced or served whole on salads or warmed in the soup. As a matter of fact, a couple meatballs added to the "Vegetarian Pea Soup" last week made the soup very acceptable to the family carnivore.
I made the meatballs at first when I did not have enough meatloaf mix for another mini-meatloaf. I baked them in a 8 x 8 inch dish, not touching each other, for about 25 minutes, then packed them in a ZipLock when they were cool. Six meatballs were enough for two lunches. I have now graduated to making 40 meatballs at a time on two cookie sheets using about 4 pounds of ground round.
Because I bake them and don't fry them, the cook time is hands off and the fat runs off. I don't put them in a sauce, so far we've used them up quickly and no freezer burn. They are discreet portions, too, good for a diet.
As you can see, I'm a big fan of oatmeal instead of breadcrumbs to stretch the beef and help it stay together. I also like the Worcestershire sauce but like to stay away from catchup, so here is my tasty recipe. Any meatloaf recipe will do, though.
Makes 40, 20 lunch servings
1 1/2 c. oatmeal
1 c. water
8 oz. tomato sauce
1/4 c. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. dried basil and oregano total
1 T. dried parsley
1/2 - 1 tsp. salt
Ground black pepper
4 lb. ground beef
Mix the oatmeal and water in a bowl and microwave for 1 - 2 minutes. Cool slightly. Place in a 6 quart bowl. Add the tomato sauce and the other ingredients through pepper. Mix well. Add the hamburger and mix until all ingredient are well distributed.
Line a cookie sheet with non-stick foil or spray or grease lightly. Form 2 ounce meatballs and place evenly spaced on the cookie sheet. Bake at 350°F for 25-30 minutes or until brown.
Cool completely, then freeze in a plastic bag.