A plate of homemade Swedish Meatballs – Köttbullar served with gravy, mashed potatoes, lingonberries, and pickled cucumber is my ultimate comfort food. There’s nothing quite like indulging in juicy homemade Swedish meatballs.
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When I moved into my first apartment, I decided to prepare this dish, which took around 1.5 hours to cook. However, once it was ready, I devoured it in less than 10 minutes. The effort was absolutely worth it. Now, I’ve discovered a time-saving technique of baking the meatballs before frying them, allowing me to cook them much faster without compromising on flavor.
Beef and pork
Let’s begin with the meatballs. The key ingredient is a combination of minced beef and pork, ensuring that some pork is mixed in with the beef. By incorporating pork, the meatballs gain added fat, resulting in juiciness. Instead of directly frying the meatballs in butter, they are first baked in the oven for 8-10 minutes. Afterwards, they are fried or browned in butter (apologies, no olive oil in this case). This two-step process helps preserve the meatballs’ juiciness.
When shaping the meatballs, it is advisable to keep a small bowl of cold water nearby. The meat mixture tends to be sticky, so wetting your hands periodically while rolling the meatballs is recommended. If the mixture becomes too sticky, simply wet your hands again to make the process smoother.
The sauce consists of milk, heavy cream (whipping cream), chicken stock, cornstarch, and soy sauce. When adding the soy sauce, exercise caution and add it gradually to avoid making the sauce overly salty.
If it’s challenging to find lingonberries* in your country, there are alternative options available. Firstly, if you can find frozen lingonberries, simply mix them with sugar and stir occasionally until the lingonberries thaw and the sugar dissolves. Secondly, you can conveniently find lingonberry jam at IKEA. Lastly, cranberry sauce can be used as an alternative, although it may not precisely replicate the flavor of lingonberries, it can provide a similar sweet-sour taste.
So, roll up your sleeves and let’s make some juicy homemade Swedish meatballs.
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