Swedish Meatballs

You might notice something a little different today.  Yup, all of the photos are watermarked with the URL to this  blog.  This is something I never thought I’d have to do, and it’s certainly not anything I ever wanted to do.

Bread and Onions

This month, I noticed that while the number of visitors to my site had increased, mostly for legitimate reasons, my bandwidth usage has gone through the roof.  (Since I self-host my blog, bandwidth = money.)  Also, the number one search term bringing visitors to my site this month is “gorillas.”


Clarified Butter

It took me awhile to figure out why this was happening, but the reason soon became apparent:  several of the images on my blog seem to have become quite popular.  Which is all well and good, really – if you want to use my images, you’re more than welcome to.   However, most of the people using them are hotlinking to them.  Hotlinking is the use of a linked object, often an image, from one site into a web page belonging to a second site – in other words, you’re not grabbing an image and hosting it on your web server, you’re simply linking back to MY site; the image shows up on your web page, but my website is bearing all the burden.


It’s like…internet welfare, y’all.

It’s also known as leeching, piggy-backing, offsite image grabs and – quite appropriately – bandwidth theft.  This is a bad thing, folks.  If you want an image from my site, just ask – I’ll be flattered as all get-out and not only send you the image to use but probably tell you exactly how, when, where and why I took the damn thing.

At any rate, I almost put some code on my site that would replace all hotlinked images with one that said, “I Steal Images From Jan’s Sushi Bar” but there is at least one image housed on my server that requires the ability to hotlink to it (I’m aware of it and it’s not the source of the bandwidth drain).  So, I removed some of the images from my server (you will find the disclaimer on this post), and labeled the other offenders that I’m aware of with “This Photo is the Property of Jan’s Sushi Bar.”  All images from this point forward will be watermarked, and I’ll gradually go back and watermark past images.

If I can’t keep people from hotlinking to them, I can at least advertise where they came from.

Frying the Meatballs

Anyhoo.  Swedish meatballs.  Not only one of Beloved’s favorite dishes, but one of The Young One’s as well, judging by the way he licked his plate Saturday night.  This is a new recipe (for me), adapted from one by Alton Brown (who, while he irritates the bejeebus out of me – can’t they just take him off of Iron Chef, for crying out loud?  he doesn’t contribute a damn thing to the show – has the occasional great recipe, and this is one of them).  It is easy, and it is goooooood.  Served with homemade egg noodles, as I did this last weekend, it is the epitome of comfort food.

Swedish Meatballs

Swedish Meatballs

serves 6, or Beloved and The Young One

2 slices fresh bread

1/4 cup milk

3 tablespoons clarified butter, divided

1/2 cup finely chopped onion

A pinch plus 1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 ½ pounds lean ground beef

2 large egg yolks

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

3 cups low-sodium beef broth

1/4 cup heavy cream

Preheat oven to 200° F.

Tear the bread into pieces and place in a small bowl along with the milk. Set aside.

In a medium-sized skillet or saute pan over medium-low heat, melt 1 tablespoon of the clarified butter. Add the onion and a pinch of salt; cook until the onions are soft and translucent, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat and set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the bread and milk mixture, ground beef, egg yolks, 1 teaspoon of kosher salt, pepper, allspice, nutmeg, and onions. Beat on low speed for 1 to 2 minutes.

Using your hands, shape the mixture into meatballs, about one ounce each.

Heat the remaining butter in the skillet over medium-low heat. Add the meatballs and saute until golden brown on all sides and cooked through, about 7 to 10 minutes. Remove the meatballs to an ovenproof dish using a slotted spoon and place in the warmed oven.

Once all of the meatballs are cooked, decrease the heat to low and add the flour to the pan or skillet. Whisk until lightly browned, approximately 1 to 2 minutes. Gradually add the beef broth and stir until the sauce begins to thicken. Add the cream and continue to cook, stirring constantly, until the sauce reaches the desired consistency. Remove the meatballs from the oven, cover with the sauce and serve over noodles, mashed potatoes or steamed rice.

21 thoughts on “Swedish Meatballs”

  1. Just curious, were the images that tended to be linked to pictures of food?

    I think your message is hilarious. But why not go further with

    “I’m a good-for-nothing lowlife with spam for a brain who steals images from…”


  2. Wow, sorry you’ve had to put up with bandwidth theft Jan, and I think you’re smart to protect your photos and anything else on your very own, personal blog. Do you think this is laziness on their part or just plain stupidity?

    Also love Swedish meatballs, so will have to try this recipe and just think, I don’t have to steal your photo to cook it… lol!
    .-= Jane Gaston´s last blog ..My MG Midget =-.

  3. That’s one of the reasons I put watermarks on all my images, too – glad I got into that habit before going with a self-hosted blog. Bandwidth ain’t cheap! 🙂 LOVE the alternate messages – and I’m giggling at Mo’s suggestion… 🙂

    Ohhhhhh! Swedish Meatballs! I LOVE Swedish Meatballs! Not only because I’m Swedish, but my Swedish grandmother made the BEST! And your recipe is very similar to hers, so yours are probably the BEST, too! 😉
    .-= Stacy (the Random Cool Chick)´s last blog ..Sassy Homemade Wine – Bottling Wine Can Be Fun =-.

  4. Not sure what Gorillas have to do with your delectable photos, but it does sound annoying. I’m occasionally baffled by all the ways people can wrong you via the internets.

    Nevermind, I saw the gorilla pics. Got it.

    I am a big fan of meatballs, these sound great. You think they’d work with other ground meats? Turkey? Pork?
    .-= Mrsbear´s last blog ..Idiot Dog =-.

  5. I can understand why they want to use your photos but the least they could do is credit you and actually take them off your site instead of grabbing bandwidth.

    I haven’t made Swedish Meatless meatballs in awhile (yeah, it can be done). Maybe this weekend I’ll break out the pasta maker.
    .-= Michele´s last blog ..Casserole Basics =-.

  6. Swedish meatballs was one of my favorites growing up, but I had forgotten about them. I am going to try this out.

    Last night I made Hawaiian style sweet and sour spare ribs for the first time. Googled a recipe and just added guava jelly to it. Came out yummy.
    .-= Pseudo´s last blog ..Happy is as happy does… =-.

  7. Mm, I am drooling over this! I don’t have a clue about the photo theft, you lost me at bandwidth and I was thinking music. Yeah, that’s bad.
    I think I’ve found our first object of disagreement, Alton Brown. I love his show Good Eats and while I don’t watch Iron Chef much, his snark makes me laugh. Laugh, I tell you! 🙂
    .-= Sprite’s Keeper´s last blog ..Good Boy =-.

  8. Sprite, I like Alton Brown too – at least I like his show. It’s probably too rudimentary for Jan but I learn a lot watching it and like understanding the whys and science behind cooking. Jan already knows this stuff and would rather have Albert Einstein up there giving more details and less fluff.

    Sometimes his snark is cute but other times it is annoying – too many groaner puns if you know what I mean.

    Jan – I still think you should have titled this post, “Hey, you! Get off of my cloud!” (too geeky?)

  9. Wow, I have no idea how to do half of the things you mentioned. Uhm, I haven’t have I? You’d tell me if I was doing something wrong, yes?

    I agree with Sprite’s Keeper about Alton Brown. Geeks in the kitchen are fun.

    Swedish meatballs. Mmmmm.
    .-= Mama Badger´s last blog ..The Spin Cycle- Opinions… =-.

  10. OK, not only am I a woman over 50, but I’m blond and southern and I have NO earthly idea what you are talking about. Gorillas? Internet robbers? Bands? I just can’t wrap my pithy old brain around any of this.

    But if I say your recipe has me drooling and your close ups are superb, will you forgive me for being so last decade?

  11. wow – they look good. Honestly – that looks so good! Just one minor worry – if the photo of the Panda disappears, am I to assume it is ok to use lean ground panda instead – sorry the message is confusing as you appear to have l…e…s…s…b..a..n..d…w..i.. (Ok I apologise for laughing, I would be furious if I were you – I would have gone for the code straight away – you are being very fair and made a brillaint post out of a difficult problem)
    .-= Kelloggsville´s last blog ..Mudski – a muddy walk thought =-.

  12. Can’t wait to see the search terms this month – lean ground gorilla balls and Alton Brown band robbers!

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