Today is National Meatball Day and we’ve invited Mici Handcrafted Italian to show us how to make the perfect meatball.
Here’s the recipe:
Meat We prefer a combination of 80% ground beef with 20% ground pork. Blending together different proteins provides a richer, more complex flavor.
Bread crumbs and eggs are used to bind all of the ingredients together. We use plain (unseasoned) breadcrumbs.
Cheese Parmigiano Reggiano cheese adds a ton of nutty, savory flavors. Use finely ground (not grated) cheese to ensure an even distribution. Regular Parmesan works just as well, but never use the “cheese” that comes in the green plastic containers on the grocery store shelves.
a must and we us finely chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley.
Extra Flavor we use a small amount of Worcestershire Sauce and chicken base to richen and add depth to the overall flavor.
Mixing Use your hands to mix and shape your meatballs. We like to use all ten fingers to squeeze and knead the meat and ingredients together a few times, without overworking the meat – which can create the wrong texture.
Size All the men in the Mici family care about the size of our balls. Meatballs should be made a bit larger when served alone or in sandwiches. Medium, golf-ball-sized meatballs are best in pasta dishes. Lightly coat your hands in olive oil prior to shaping your meatballs to prevent them from sticking to your hands. Gently and lightly handle the meatballs while rolling to prevent them from becoming too dense which will yield a tough meatball.
Cooking When we’re making these at home, we like to brown or sear the meatballs in a pan prior to baking them off in the oven. Creating a crispy crust is an important step that adds flavor and texture. Some folks like to finish their meatballs off by braising them in a sauce to add more flavor and tenderness.
We’ve had to modify our traditional at-home technique to make big batches in the restaurants.