Authentic Swedish Meatballs

“This recipe is one of my earliest food memories. Every Christmas Eve, my family enjoys an authentic Swedish Smorgasbord, of which this is an essential part. My mother still tells tales (and I'm 40) of me as a toddler, standing by the dish of meatballs and eating as many as I could hold. These are not spicy, like most Scandinavian food, but have a great flavor and texture. In fact, they are so soft, that I usually chill the meat mixture before rolling and frying to avoid meatballs with flat sides. I've included the directions for the gravy, which I usually don't make, as it's traditional, but the balls are wonderful without it on any buffet table, or as an addition to a potluck. They are also good cold, straight from the fridge. If you like to do OAMC cooking, these freeze beautifully, in fact, I never make less than 100 meatballs at a time, lightly brown them, then flash freeze to finish later. The traditional recipe calls for a mix of beef, pork, and veal- if you object to veal, they work equally well with an even mix of beef and pork. Don't try to use these as an option for spaghetti, the seasonings just don't match. Prep time does not include chilling the meat mixture or the prepared meatballs.”
READY IN:
50mins
SERVES:
6
UNITS:
US

Ingredients Nutrition

Directions

  1. Melt butter in a skillet.
  2. Saute onions in the butter until golden.
  3. Soak the bread crumbs in the milk.
  4. To the bread mixture, add the meats, egg, onion, allspice, salt, and pepper. Mix until a smooth texture is achieved.
  5. Chill mix for an hour or so, to firm it up.
  6. Form mix into meatballs, using 1-2 tablespoons of meat per ball. (these should be smaller than a golf ball). If you are making these on a warm day, you might want to chill the formed balls again, so that you don't get flat sides when you fry them.
  7. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat.
  8. Melt a small amount of butter (traditional) or oil in the pan.
  9. Add enough meatballs to fill the pan very loosely.
  10. Shake the pan as you fry the balls, to keep the round shape as they cook. Continue to cook until they are evenly brown on all sides.
  11. Remove each batch to a warm platter in the oven, as you fry the rest.
  12. If you wish to make the gravy, deglaze the pan with a little water after each batch, and reserve the resulting drippings in a bowl.
  13. For the gravy:.
  14. When all of the meatballs have been fried, mix the flour and cream (or milk), and add to the reserved pan drippings in the skillet.
  15. Simmer for 10 minutes.
  16. If the mixture is too thick, add a bit of cream (or milk) to thin, then taste and season with salt and/or pepper as needed.
  17. Pour gravy over warm meatballs and serve with boiled potatoes and lingonberry sauce.

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a
SORT BY: