Swedish Meatballs

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I had some other recipes that I wanted to share this week, but like the Sauerbraten, it will be quite sometime before I make Swedish Meatballs again.  There are two reasons for this --- One, it is a seasonal thing and two, I made a double batch of meatballs, so we will enjoy it for leftovers, lunches, and have a little left for the freezer.  

I tore this recipe out of Martha Stewart Living some years ago.  It was originally called Veal Fricadelles and was served with rosemary mashed potatoes.  I thought the veal mixture would make a great Swedish meatball and I decided to infuse a light sour cream gravy with a bundle of fresh rosemary.  I am definitely not a Swede, but let me tell you that these are some good Swedish meatballs and gravy.  

The meatballs are delicately spiced with a bit of nutmeg and allspice and then slowly baked until they are oh-so tender.  The rosemary infused gravy pairs perfectly with the spices.  Serve them with a good Dijon mustard, Lingonberry preserves, and spätzle--it is a delicious dinner.  I think the only thing missing is a side of braised red cabbage--stay tuned for that recipe.

Printable Recipe

Swedish Meatballs
makes 36-40 meatballs

For the meatballs
1 large Russet potato, about 8 ounces
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, plus more for sautéing
1 medium red onion, finely chopped
2 pounds ground veal
1 tablespoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
1 extra large egg
3 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
1/4 cup whole milk

For the gravy
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
3 cups chicken broth
3 sprigs of fresh rosemary, tied with kitchen twine
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup sour cream

Dijon mustard
Lingonberry preserves

For the meatballs
Scrub potato, place in a medium pot, cover with cold water and bring to a boil.  Boil gently until a sharp knife easily pierces through the potato, about 25-30 minutes. Drain and set aside until it is cool to the touch.  Peel the potato, chop and press through the largest holes of a potato ricer.  Set aside.

Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a skillet over medium-low heat.  Add the red onion and sauté until soft, about 15 minutes.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the veal, potato, and onion; beat on low speed.  Add the salt, pepper, nutmeg, and allspice.  Beat in the egg, flour, and milk. Mix until completely combined.  Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 325ºF.

Using a 2-ounce ice cream scoop, shape the veal mixture into meatballs-- there should be about 36-40.  Heat 1 tablespoon of butter in a 11.5-inch non-stick skillet.  Cook the meatballs in 2-3 batches, adding butter as necessary, until browned on all sides, but not necessarily cooked through, 8-10 minutes.  Transfer the meatballs to a large dutch oven.

For the gravy
In the same non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, melt the butter.  Add the flour and cook until the flour begins to brown, about 2-3 minutes.  Add the chicken stock and stir until the gravy is thickened until desired consistency is achieved.  Remove from the heat.  Place the sour cream in a small bowl and gently stir in 1/2 cup of the gravy to temper the sour cream.  Add the sour cream mixture to the gravy and stir until combined.  Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.  Place a fine mesh strainer over the meatballs and pour the gravy through the strainer to remove any browned bits.  Tuck the rosemary bundle into the gravy.  Cover the casserole with a tight fitting lid and place in the oven.  Bake the meatballs for 30-45 minutes.  Remove the rosemary bundle and serve the meatballs with mustard and preserves. Enjoy!

Source:  Meatballs adapted from Martha Stewart Living, December 2003-pg.120, Gravy from The Galley Gourmet.


  1. Tomorrow nights dinner...those meatballs and the gravy look wonderful! Now, if I could just have the spatzle recipe I'd be in my glory!

  2. Nancy-
    My spätzle recipe is almost there--just need to make a few minor tweeks. Hope you enjoy the meatballs. Thanks for stopping by:)

  3. What would be a good substitute for the veal? Thank you!


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