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Sig's Norwegian meatballs

publication date: Feb 17, 2012
author/source: Signe Johansen
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If you're an IKEA regular you may have developed a Swedish meatball habit. This is the equally delicious Norwegian version from Sig.

Serves 8
Time: about 45 minutes
Cost: about £1 a head

5-6 tbsp sunflower or other light cooking oil
1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
3 slices stale country bread*, crusts removed, torn into small pieces (about 110g weight in total)
225ml milk mixed with a tablespoon of yoghurt
500g veal or beef mince
500g pork mince
2 level tsp ground allspice
1 level tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 level tsp ground ginger (optional)
1 level tsp salt
1/4 level tsp ground white or black pepper
1 large egg yolk
25g butter

Heat 2 tbsp of the oil in a pan and cook the chopped onion over a low heat until soft (about 8-10 minutes) Set aside to cool. In a small bowl, combine the bread with the yoghurt infused milk. Make sure all the bread is moistened and leave until the liquid has been absorbed.
In a larger bowl, combine the mince, cooked onion, the spices and seasoning. Add the milk-soaked bread and mix together thoroughly (easiest with your hands). Rest the mixture for 10 minutes then take small spoonfuls of the mixture and lightly roll between your palms to form small walnut-sized meatballs. Complete rolling the meatballs before you start frying them.
Heat the oven to 110°C/225°F/Gas 1/2 and place a baking dish in it. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a medium to large frying pan, add half the butter and fry a batch of meatballs, browning them well on all sides but taking care not to burn them. Transfer them to the warm baking dish and repeat with the remaining batches, adding extra oil and butter as necessary.
When the meatballs are cooked, serve warm with steamed new potatoes, a dollop of sour cream and a spoonful of lingonberry and cranberry sauce or with the cream gravy below.
Cream gravy: After frying the meatballs, drain off the fat leaving 2 tbsp in the pan, add 2 tbsp of flour and cook over a low heat until golden. Gradually add 450ml beef stock, bring to the boil and reduce the liquid by a third. Take the pan off the heat and stir in 150ml double cream, sour cream or creme fraiche. Season with salt and pepper and a few drops of Worcestershire sauce. Add the meatballs back to the sauce and warm through.


* Adding a high proportion of bread to meatballs like this not only makes the meat go a lot further but makes the meatballs much easier to roll.

* It might seem extravagant buying both allspice and nutmeg for this recipe but they're both spices that have a long shelf-life (a couple of years) and if you make meatballs regularly you'll get good use from them


For more tips on how to stretch meat check out this feature here.


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