Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Meatloaf Meatballs

Ever since my hands could roll, they have been rolling meatballs. When I was a little girl, my mom would pull a stool up to the counter and I would help her to make the meatballs for Sunday dinner’s sauce. One by one, I would follow her lead and try to roll them as perfect as I could. I can still remember seeing them all lined up on the counter and feeling so proud of my contribution to the meal.

Making meatballs with Mom is one of my earliest memories in the kitchen. Perhaps it was then, that a little seed was subconsciously planted inside of me; a teeny tiny little baby speck of a meatball seed that would someday grow into the desire to become a chef and nourish the drive to eventually help me flower into one.

With the flavor of meatloaf and the portability of a meatball, meatloaf meatballs are the perfect combination of favorite homemade dinners.  I put a hunk of mozzarella in the center for a delicious melted surprise. And for extra flavor and even more appeal, I wrapped it all in bacon. The bacon melts right onto the seasoned meat as it cooks, incorporating a delicious saltiness on the outside that only a slice of pork belly can do so well. 


Of course, the best thing about classic meatloaf is a good ketchup glaze. Wouldn't you agree? Half-way through cooking, the meatballs are basted with a simple, no-cook ketchup glaze made with maple syrup and Worcestershire sauce, then receive one more good slathering right before they are served. Enjoy! 

Meatloaf Meatballs:
Yield: 10-12 Meatballs
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small onion, minced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 pounds ground sirloin
- 1 cup panko breadcrumb
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon dry thyme
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce, divided
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1 egg
- ½ cup ketchup
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon hot sauce
- 1 cup mozzarella, cut into cubes
- 5-6 slices of bacon, cut in half
1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
2) Heat the olive oil in a small saute pan over medium heat. Saute the onions until translucent. Add the garlic and cook until just fragrant.
3) In a large bowl, combine the cooked onion and garlic with the meat, breadcrumb, garlic powder, thyme, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, cumin and the egg. Season the mixture with salt and pepper. Mix until all of the ingredients are well incorporated.
4) To prepare the glaze, mix together the remaining Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, maple syrup and hot sauce in a medium bowl.
5) Form the meat mixture into balls a little larger than the size of golf ball; insert a cube of mozzarella into each, forming the meat completely around the cheese. Wrap each meatball in a slice of bacon and place seam-side down on a broiler pan.
6) Bake the meatballs for 15 minutes, and then baste with half the glaze. Bake 15 minutes more until the meat and bacon are fully cooked. Brush on the remaining glaze and serve immediately. Serve over rice, if desired.


Natasha Price said...

Great idea - I like the bacon wrapping and the melted cheese inside.

FOODalogue said...

Traditional comfort food presented in anew was a great way to go.

Claudia said...

Love everything about this - and most especially - that lovely surprise inside!

Anonymous said...

Meatloaf Meatballs what a great idea. Keep up the good work, I love your blog.

Lazaro Cooks said...

What's not to like. Bacon wrapped. Gooey cheese inside. Meatloaf as meatball.

This meatball died and ascended to culinary nirvana.

Great job.

Be well

Cheap Ethnic Eatz said...

Oh yumm: meat, cheese and bacon. Your meatballs look awesome. And love your story of helping you mom out. It is those little moments that can shape us.

Trix said...

Haha! A meatball seed ... I am now imagining the delicious meatball tree or bush that would grow from said seed. These look super - everything good in one place. Meat, bacon, cheese. Yum!

angela@spinachtiger said...

Love your ingredients. I am a meatloaf fan, so these would be a big win in my book. Nice job.

Priscilla - She's Cookin' said...

Love it! My meatloaf recipe is basically my meatball recipe - next time I'll add a mozzarella center and wrap them with bacon and everyone will go absolutely nuts :)

Linda Harding said...

Love how your meatball memories have "shaped " (couldn't resist) this dish - and what a recipe it is! Bacon, meatballs AND cheese? Heavenly!

lostpastremembered said...

Nice! One of my favorite recipes is good for meatloaf, meatballs and hamburgers... it's just good for all of them. Wrapping in bacon and stuffing them with cheese. Great recipe and one I am looking forward to trying.

Tanantha said...

I was wondering myself what that red coat was hahaha. It's a ketchup glaze! This is a really interesting spices you put in to meatballs and who can say no to bacon wrap and gooey cheese!?