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Asian-Style Pork and Goat Meatballs

O hai.

Well, we’re back from our combined birthday/holiday adventures and a good time was had by all.  Beloved took me to Michael Symon’s Lola Bistro for my birthday, and I’m afraid G. Michael’s Bistro has lost us, perhaps for good.  Afterwards, we drove to Cincinnati to visit with Jolly and The G Man, which is always fun.

One of the more exciting things that happened over the holiday weekend (at least for us) was the acquisition of our goat, Pete.  You don’t get a lot of meat from a goat – our box had about 30 pounds of different cuts (including 2 frenched racks) – which, after paying for the goat and processing, cost us about $6.75 a pound all told.  A bit high, perhaps, for the ground and stew meat, but not bad at all for the frenched racks, chops and shanks.  Besides – it’s goat; not exactly something you can just pick up at the grocery store.

While goat is butchered very much like lamb, it does not taste like it – lamb has a rather strong, often a bit gamey, flavor.  Goat, however, has a pretty mild flavor, more like beef or a good venison.  Because there’s not a lot of Pete in the freezer and we may have to wait until late next fall to purchase another goat, I mixed the pound of ground goat with a pound of ground pork (if you don’t eat pork and can get the goat, go ahead and use two pounds of goat or mix it with a pound of ground venison or ground turkey) for this dish.  Both meats work really well with Asian flavors and this dish came out quite well.

Don’t be intimidated by the list of ingredients; the recipe comes together quickly and easily.  And be prepared for more goat recipes – I’ve got 29 more pounds out there, and hopefully it will all come out better than the poor duck I overcooked on Christmas Eve (although the pork belly I made as an appetizer was delicious).

Asian-Style Pork and Goat Meatballs

Asian-Style Pork and Goat Meatballs

serves 6

1 pound ground pork
1 pound ground goat
1 tablespoon lard or butter
1/2 small onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 tablespoons tamari or gluten-free soy sauce
1 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons ginger, freshly grated
1 teaspoon sesame oil

Sauce
1/2 large onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 tablespoons lard or butter
1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon red pepper
1 tablespoon ginger, freshly grated
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
2 tablespoons raw honey
1/4 cup tamari or gluten-free soy sauce
2 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons tapioca flour or arrowroot powder

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Melt the lard or butter in a small, heavy skillet over medium-low heat. Cook the onion, stirring frequently, until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Using your hands, gently mix the ground pork, ground goat, onion/garlic mixture, tamari, pepper, red pepper flakes, ginger and sesame oil in a large bowl until well-blended. Form into 2-ounce meatballs and place on a shallow, foil-lined baking dish; bake the meatballs for 20 to 25 minutes, or just until cooked through. Place the meatballs on a paper towel-lined plate and set aside.

While the meatballs are baking, melt the lard or butter in a large, heavy skillet over medium-low heat. Cook the onion, stirring frequently, until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Pour in the chicken stock, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, ginger, sesame oil, honey, and tamari and simmer for 10 minutes.

Whisk the tapioca flour into the water and add to the sauce mixture in the skillet. Cook, stirring frequently, until the sauce thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon. Reduce the heat and add the meatballs to the sauce; continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the meatballs are coated with the sauce and heated through. Serve over steamed rice, riced cauliflower or stir-fried baby bok choy.

Nutrition (per serving): 431 calories, 26.3g total fat, 106mg cholesterol, 1066.7mg sodium, 675.7mg potassium, 15.1g carbohydrates, <1g fiber, 8.1g sugar, 32g protein.

Printable version (requires Adobe Reader)


13 comments

You should make your goat recipes into their own category and name it “For the love of Pete”. That would be AWESOME.

Jan says:

This made me literally Laugh Out Loud – I’m so going to do it! I’ll probably add all my recipes for “variety” meats (i.e. anything that isn’t beef, chicken, turkey or pork), but it’s a GREAT idea; thank you so much!!

Irish Gumbo says:

Gork-balls! Sounds good. There are some markets around here where I can find some good goat, now I’m getiing ideas…:)

Jan says:

It’s a good thing I’d already had my coffee when I read this – Gork-balls?? I’d have been spitting all over my laptop, and the keyboard is wonky already. :P

chuck says:

i had goat once at a mexican restaurant in texas. i was less open minded 20 years ago and didn’t really give it a chance. would like to try it again. i am a bit disappointed in the price. wish it was more affordable. btw, have you been to russo’s in akron? highly recommended.

Jan says:

We have not been to Russo’s, but I’m going to check it out (like…now LOL).

It’s been a long time since I’d had goat, too, but I’m so very glad we got this one – he’s delicious. We paid $100 to the farmer for the goat, and a flat $100 fee for processing him; since it was about 29 pounds of meat, dressed and cut, it comes out to about $6.75/pound. But like I said, goat isn’t something that you can just pick up at the grocery store and I’m thrilled that we’re adding different kinds of meats and vegetables to our diet. Now if I could just find a reliable, local source of venison!

chuck says:

i am with you on the venison. struck out this year. gonna have to get a bow to allow myself a longer season. my brother in law and i are gonna try canada geese breast. they are everywhere and should be easy to get.

the chef and owner at russo’s trained under emeril. very good cajun and seafood.

I’m hungry. I think it’s time for breakfast. For Pete’s sake …

Jan says:

I’ve got enough ground Pete that I can make a sausage out of him. Hmmmm…

Thanks for the idea!

Hey, this looks gluten-free too! Awesome! Hope you had a very Merry Christmas, Jan! And I look forward to more goat and gluten-free recipes!

Jan says:

Margaret, everything I cook is gluten-free. including desserts! You’ll see a couple of goat recipes a month here if things go as I plan. :)

We had a lovely Christmas here at the Sushi Bar – I hope you did, too!

Nancy says:

$6.75 per lb. is a great price for goat. The first farmer I found in our area (Pacific NW) that sold goat wanted $8 – $17 per lb. Then I found a farmer selling it for $9 – $12 per lb. Most recently I found it for $5.75 – $7.50 per lb., and the neat thing is that farm is the closest to where I live! We were also really impressed with the flavor of their pork, so will probably be getting both from that farmer from now on.
I’ve read that goat is one of the most popular (if not THE most popular) meat worldwide. It’s funny that Americans have never really embraced it.

Jan says:

Well, THIS American has embraced it with enthusiasm – so much so that I’m going to order two goats next fall from the same farmer.

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