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Video:How to Make Meatballs

with Jonathon Stewart

A great source of protein, meatballs don't have to be high in fat and cholesterol. Watch how easy it can be to make this versatile and delicious dish at home.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Make Meatballs

Hi, I'm Jonathon Stewart for About.com Food, and today, it's all about meatballs.

Let's face it: meatballs are delicious. They're a tasty treat that's been around for centuries and enjoyed across the globe.

Ingredients Needed to Make Meatballs

One of the best things about meatballs is that the ingredients you need to make them are pretty basic. Here's what you'll need:
  • 2 pounds ground meat
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh basil
  • salt
  • ground pepper
  • 2 cups crumbled, stale, whole-grain bread
  • 1/2 cup milk

Make Healthier Meatballs

A quick note about the ingredients: some recipes will call for beef, pork, or veal. But, be warned, these will likely make your meatballs very high in cholesterol and fat.

To cut back on the bad stuff, stick to extra-lean, RBST-free ground sirloin or ground turkey.

Use Fresh Ingredients

And as for the flavor, if you use good quality, hand-grated cheese, fresh herbs and garlic, and actual bread instead of pre-packaged crumbs, your meatballs will have your crowd begging for seconds.

Combine the Meatball Ingredients

For this recipe, preheat your oven to 350 while you combine your ingredients in a bowl.

Start with the meat, garlic, eggs, cheese, herbs, salt, and pepper, and mix together by hand with a big spoon.

Next, blend in the bread crumbs and slowly add in the milk, about 1/4 cup at a time. You want the consistency to be moist, but don't forget you've still got to roll them into meatballs.

Roll the Mixture Into Balls

And now for the fun part! Grab a small amount of the mixture in your hands.

Think back to when you were in kindergarten and given a chunk of playdough and first learned how to roll it into a ball. That's what we're going for.

The meatballs should be somewhere in the neighborhood of an inch to an inch and a half in diameter, and as Pellegrino Artusi suggested in 1892, you should "flatten [them] at the ends like a terrestrial globe."

Bake the Meatballs

Now, place the meatballs in a baking pan or cookie sheet, leaving a small amount of room between each. Once your pan is full, pop them in and let the oven do its work.

This is the hard part: let your meatballs bake for about 30 minutes, a little less if they're on the small side, a little longer if you're going for Italian polpette grandi.

Cool the Meatballs and Serve

After you take your meatballs out of the oven, remove them from the pan and be sure to let them cool. Now, this recipe should make about 30 good-sized meatballs.

While you can enjoy your meatballs with spaghetti or your favorite sauce, this is the way I like to eat them best.

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