Thursday, April 10, 2008

why wait for midsommar?

we've had some lovely meals this week and I've been meaning to share more of them with you! We enjoyed traditional-Sunday-dinner type fare last Saturday evening, with our last bottle of wine before our wine country trip: swedish meatballs in milk gravy with lingonberries, baked potatoes, and sauteed bok choy, with a bottle of Foxen's Foothills Reserve.

We tried a new recipe for the meatballs, adapted from Marcus Samuelsson's incredible cookbook, Akvavit and the New Scandinavian Cuisine (that we picked out last Christmas - thanks, Mom!). I confess, I've made a point of never eating veal before, and I broke that habit. There was no LAMB available at the market. None whatsoever! So, alright, I caved and bought the veal. I have to admit, these were pretty incredible meatballs, but in the future I'll plan ahead and call around, and make sure I can just get the lamb.

(recipe can and probably should be doubled; we made just two portions, we keep our meat intake down)

Swedish Meatballs:

1/4 c. panko breadcrumbs

1/8 c. nonfat milk

1 Tbl olive oil

1/2 medium red onion, finely chopped

1/4 # lean ground beef

1/4 # ground pork

1/4 # ground veal

1 Tbl honey
1 egg

1 tsp nutmeg

salt and pepper

1 1/2 Tbl butter

combine breadcrumbs and milk in a bowl, stirring together to moisten crumbs. set aside.

heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat and saute onion until softened (about 5 min). Remove from heat.

In a small bowl, beat egg with a fork. In a large bowl, mix ground meats, sauteed onion, honey, nutmeg and one half of the beaten egg (reserve remaining egg for another use). Season with salt and pepper. Add moistened crumbs and mix well. Shape mixture into golf-ball-sized meatballs.

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the meatballs, turning frequently, for about 7 minutes, until browned on all sides and cooked through. Set cooked meatballs on a plate.


For gravy: add about 1 tsp more butter to rendered meat fat in pan. Melt over medium heat, and then whisk in approx 1 Tbl flour until bubbly and smooth. Add 1 c. nonfat milk and bring to a boil, then reduce heat, and cook for a minute or two until thickened. Return meatballs to pan and cook in gravy for about 1 minute.

For bok choy:

olive oil


2-3 Tbl finely chopped red onion

3 heads baby bok choy, white parts cut into wedges and greens cut into strips

salt and pepper

Melt 1 Tbl olive oil and 1 Tble butter over medium heat. Add onions and salt and pepper and saute until softened, approximately 5 minutes. Add bok choy, cover, and saute until softened, about 5-7 minutes. Remove lid and cook a few more minutes to reduce any liquids that may have been released.

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