Monday, November 11, 2013

Taste of Home - Grandma's Meatballs

You know those dishes, that you just smell and they immediately bring you back to childhood? Well, my grandma's food is exactly that. Her mayonnaise salad, her little schnitzels, the stuffed vine leaves... But most of all - her meatballs with sauce. Since I don't eat meat anymore, I can't enjoy the taste, but the smell is enough to send me back to age 6 or 7.
Grandma's Meatballs recipe

Seven years ago, after I gave birth for the very first time, my grandma (who was 70 something at the time) flew all the way to Shanghai, just to hug and kids her first great-grandson (and me!). There, in Shanghai, in my Chinese kitchen, she first taught me how to make those meatballs. I just stood there, next to her, while she cooked, and wrote everything she did. I used this recipe so many times since that day. Want a proof? Well, I guess in this case a picture IS worth a thousand words...
Grandma's Meatballs recipe

Here's the English version -

Meatballs ingredients
1 medium onion, grated
500 g (1.1 lbs) minced beef (you can mix with either chicked or turkey)
1 egg
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp baharat (a typical middle eastern spice mixture). If you can't find or make it, just add another 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
3 tbs bread crumbs
salt & pepper

For the sauce
1 tsp. Canola oil
1 medium onion, grated
1/2 cup tomato paste
1/2 cup ketchup
2 cups boiled water
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp baharat
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
salt & pepper

Combine all meatballs ingredients together.
In a large pot saute onion in oil, 3-4 min.
Add tomato paste, ketchup and boiled water.
Add cumin, baharat, cinnamon, salt & pepper.
Use the meatball mixture to form meatballs about 1" in diameter.
Add the meatballs to the sauce. Make sure the meatballs are covered in sauce. If not, add some water.
Cover and cook on low-medium heat 1/2 hour.

These meatballs are great with rice, mashed potatoes or spaghetti.


  1. Can't wait to try these out. I love meatballs and am always looking for a new way to fix them with different flavors. This looks really yummy!

    1. You should definitely try them! I promise you won't regret :)