Albondigas are a traditional Spanish dish and are a great way to use up either raw or cooked meat. These albondigas are simple to make, but the preparation time and cooking time is not speedy.
You can make a double batch and freeze half the quantity before they are cooked, or cook them in the sauce and then freeze them, either way the preparation time seems more worth while and it’s great to have something semi or wholly prepared in the freezer.
These are a real favourite with all my boys – and that’s rare to find something that all three of them like!
Albondigas – meatballs.
600 grms Minced beef
4 garlic cloves
2 sprigs parsley finely chopped
1 cup of flour
1 onion chopped up in large chunks
2 bay leaves
1 tsp of salt
1/2 glass of wine
To Prepare the meatballs.
In a large bowl beat the eggs and then add the meat, mixing well. Add the crushed garlic, the salt and the parsley, mixing with a fork until it’s well coated with the egg.
Use a spoon to and take out enough mixture to make a golf-ball-sized meatball and lightly press it with your hands, leaving the edges rough, not smooth so that the sauce and juices can penetrate easily. (If you make them very smooth they can turn out rather dry).
Make balls with the rest of the mixture, then coat each of the balls by rolling them in flour.
Use a small, deep frying pan and fill with olive oil to about half the depth of the meatballs.
When the oil is hot carefully add 4 or 5 balls and brown them lightly for 1 or 2 minutes, make sure that you turn them over.
Fry all the meatballs like this, putting them aside when done.
To make the sauce.
Use the olive oil used for frying the meatballs, sieve it into a large frying pan, then add the onion and cook slowly for about 10 minutes. Add the garlic cloves with the skin on, and two bay leaves.
Put a little of the wine in a cup and add the flour mix it well, and make sure there are no lumps, add the rest of the wine, then add the mixture to the frying pan, with about 1/2 a litre of water, and when well mixed, add the meatballs, and more water.
The meatballs need to be about one-third covered with the sauce, cook slowly for about 30 minutes, stirring every now and again so they don’t stick.
Add more water if necessary, or to thin the sauce.
I make them in a Spanish Cazuela, an earthenware dishe. I use mine a lot, cooking can be started on the hob and put then put straight into the oven, then onto the table, saving on washing up!