Thursday, December 17, 2009


For years my dear friend Jenny would host a wonderful Christmas cocktail party honoring her Swedish heritage. A smorgsbord of traditional Swedish favorites included tiny meatballs in a rich brown gravy and platters of homemade gravlax with rye bread.  An antique punch bowl held warm, spicy Glog, a sweet mulled wine that is deliciously addictive.  Neophytes learned the traditional Swedish toast "Skol" which was enthusiastically declared while gazing into your partners eyes. 

We always stayed much too late, laughing and lingering near the tray of ginger snap cookies (which was placed very near the Glog!). Although Jenny now lives in Stockholm, we see each other when she comes to visit family in New York.  I miss her dearly and her wonderful authentic Scandinavian cooking which inspired me to create this Swedish Meatball recipe.

Swedish Meatballs
1 pound ground sirloin
1 pound sweet sausage removed from casing
2 1/2 slices white bread 
1/4 cup of milk
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 jumbo eggs
1/8 cup all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup freshly chopped dill, divided
3 cups of beef broth
2/3 cup heavy cream

1. Tear the bread into small pieces and place into a small mixing bowl with the milk and set aside.
2. Heat 1 tablespoon of butter with one tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet on medium heat. Saute onions for 3-4 minutes until soft.
3. In a large mixing bowl, combine meat, eggs, bread mixture, seasonings, half the dill and cooled onions. Combine thoroughly and shape into small walnut sized balls.
4. Heat 1 tablespoon of butter and one tablespoon of olive oil in a skilled on medium low heat.  Cook meatballs until golden brown and thoroughly cooked through, about 7-10 minutes.
5. Spoon meatballs into cassarole dish.
6. Using the same pan with the meat drippings, decrease the heat to low and add flour, whisking for 1-2 minutes until lightly browned.  
7. Add the beef broth slowly and wish until the mixture begins to thicken. 
8. Add the heavy cream and cook for 1-2 minutes until completely incorporated and thickened. Season with salt and pepper.
9. Spoon gravy over meatballs and garnish with dill.

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