German-Style Meatballs

According to the proprietress of Primal Kitchen: A Family Grokumentary (she is SUCH a nice person and her series about what her pre-schooler eats for lunch each day alone is worth the visit), Oktoberfest is in full swing in Munich this week, ending October 3rd.  Why they’d want to have Oktoberfest in September is beyond me but I checked, and sure enough – that’s when they’re celebrating.

Silly Germans.

I had no idea that any of this was taking place (for some reason, I thought Oktoberfest took place in October, but that’s just me) when I made sweet and sour cabbage Friday night and served it with these German-Style Meatballs.  Oh. My. Goodness.  The were absolutely delicious – four of us annihilated the entire pan.  And it was easy – in fact, the hardest thing about it was deciding what to do with the rest of the sweet white wine (I don’t care for white wines, especially sweet ones).  (I drank it anyway.  Wouldn’t want to waste it.)

While the recipe calls for ground pork, ground beef would be a perfectly suitable substitute, as would ground turkey if you insist on a non-red meat.  I’ve also specified either sour cream or plain yogurt, simply because I used plain, full-fat goat milk yogurt.  It was even tangier than cow milk yogurt, hence the addition of the optional tablespoon of honey.  If you use sour cream, I doubt you’ll need it – the wine should keep it sweet enough.

German-Style Meatballs

German-Style Meatballs

serves 6, or my household and a guest

2 pounds ground pork
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried dill
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Worchestershire sauce (without HFCS or MSG)
2 tablespoons lard or other cooking fat
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup Riesling or other sweet white wine
1/2 cup sour cream or plain yogurt
1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
1 tablespoon raw honey (optional)

Using your hands, gently combine the ground pork, parsley, salt, pepper, dill, mustard and Worchestershire sauce in a large mixing bowl; shape the mixture into approximately thirty-two 1 ½-inch meatballs.

Melt the lard or cooking fat in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add the meatballs and cook, turning gently, until browned and almost cooked through, about 10 minutes. Remove the meatballs from the skillet with a slotted spoon to a paper towel-lined plate and set aside.

Drain all but two tablespoons of the fat from the skillet; add the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds or until lightly browned. Add the wine; bring to a boil over medium heat and cook 1 minute. Reduce the heat and stir in the sour cream or yogurt, salt, pepper and honey. Return the meatballs to the skillet and simmer for about 5 minutes, or until the meatballs are cooked through.

Nutrition (per serving): 519 calories, 40.2g total fat, 122.9mg cholesterol, 600.1mg sodium, 488.1mg potassium, 5.8g carbohydrates, <1g fiber, 3.7g sugar, 26.2g protein.

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13 thoughts on “German-Style Meatballs”

  1. I am going to make these for supper tonight! I was in the middle of trying to decide what to make for supper when I read this. I hope mine turn out as good as yours did. Happy Monday Jan!

  2. I’m with you 100% on the proprietress of Primal Kitchen: A Family Grokumentary and white wine. Yay and Yuk, in that order. And having Nom Nom Paleo for a fan, who should be earning a living as a food critic, is kind of a big deal IMO! 🙂 I think German meatballs will have a spot on this week’s menu!

  3. My mother used to make German meatballs cooked in beer, and I never liked them because I thought they were too bitter. Later on in life, I acquired a taste, oh boy did I acquire a taste for that bitterness.

  4. Devoured by 3 of them! The only reason I got a small taste is that Jan reserved me a plate until my flight arrived!

  5. Made this last night for my very German husband. He says to tell you THANK YOU! Right now, as I am typing, there are garlic bits stuck to my computer. I didn’t see the “print this” button until this morning. (Very handy, BYW.) Anyways, this was not only delicious, but fun! I enjoy trying new recipes, although I seldom get time to do it. I had the rare day off yesterday and had bought some local, raw honey from a friend, so I gave this a shot, along with your fabulous red cabbage.

    I have never used ground pork for anything, so that was a first. I didn’t have lard, so I used olive oil (I know, don’t whip me!) Next time I will gladly use bacon fat. I served this with mashed potatoes, and drizzled the gravy over them. Also, I had no problem figuring out what to do with the leftover Riesling.

    Both dishes were SPECTACULAR and I can’t wait to make them again! In fact, I may just have my mother-in-law over for dinner one night this week and see if I can “wow” her!

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