Recipe: Sweet and Sour Meatballs

Cure Ocha here with a recipe!

So the wonderful co-op had its one year anniversary party with potluck, and I brought a special recipe: sweet and sour meatballs. This recipe has been in my family for half a century and comes out of a 1950s magazine – I love clever 1950s recipes like this.

Sweet and Sour Meatballs for a Party

The meatballs can be whatever meatball recipe you like best, or even storebought, but this is what I used. They’re a little tender and have to be handled gently when made this way, but pretty much anyone who eats meat can eat them safely.

1 cup dry short or medium grain rice
2 cups water
4 lbs ground beef
Italian seasoning (or thyme, oregano, basil and parsley) to taste
Garlic salt (or garlic and salt) to taste

Preheat the oven to 400F. Cook the rice with the water in your usual way. The reason you don’t want long grain rice is because you want the rice to be sticky so that it will bind your meat together. Cool the rice down (I spread it out on a cookie sheet and fanned it with my bamboo spatula) until it’s only warm, then mix it thoroughly with the ground beef and seasonings. Take a small bit and cook it in a pan in order to taste it and make sure the seasonings are right. When it’s yummy, roll the meat mixture into 1 inch balls and place them touching but not smooshed onto a cookie sheet – you should get a little more than sixty from this amount of meat. Bake them in the oven, checking frequently after the first ten minutes, until one from the middle is cooked through when you break it open.

Now that you have meatballs, it’s time for the sauce. Are you ready? This is absurdly easy.

30 oz of cocktail sauce
30 oz of grape jelly

Mix them in a large pot (or crockpot) over low heat. Add the meatballs and stir to coat. Simmer at least 10 minutes and then keep them warm until it’s time to eat.

These travel well in a crockpot and stay safe during potlucks if you just plug the crockpot in and keep it on warm when you get there. If you have a little more or a little less of the sauce it doesn’t matter…it’s a flexible recipe.

Please enjoy!