"chinese meatballs"/sauce

elba1September 10, 2012

Hi folks, someone mentioned to me recently that she made "chinese meatballs" using ground beef, soy sauce, ginger, garlic & scallions. I was thinking of trying something like that tonight to serve with brown rice & asparagus. What would you use for a bit of sauce?

I can't use soy sauce, but use the coconut aminos instead. Also can't use hot peppers. I have the above ingredients on hand plus things like rice vinegar & sesame oil - typical stocked pantry, but nothing fancy. Thought I'd add a bit of bread crumbs to the meatballs. What about a bit of shredded zucchini, or would that be wierd?

Any recipes for the meatballs/sauce appreciated, thanks!

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This is a good recipe from The Perfect Pantry that I have made. You could saute the mushrooms in some oil, then add in the sauce ingredients, then the meatballs and heat them in the sauce until hot.

Chinese "spaghetti and meat sauce"
We use ground beef in many ways besides burgers. In our non-Asian house, this dish is the ultimate comfort food, just like the spaghetti and meat sauce we ate when we were kids. Serves 3-4.

8 oz fresh noodles or dry spaghetti
1 Tbsp peanut or canola oil
1/2 lb ground beef
2 scallions, sliced
1/2 lb cremini mushrooms, sliced
1 tsp chili paste with garlic
2 tsp oyster-flavored sauce
3 tsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup mung bean sprouts (optional)

Cook fresh noodles or dry spaghetti in a large pot of boiling water, until they are just underdone. Drain and set aside.

Heat a wok or large frying pan over high heat. Add the oil, then the beef, and cook, stirring and breaking up the beef as you go, until the beef is lightly browned. Add scallions and mushrooms, and continue stir-frying until the mushrooms are starting to brown. Stir in the chili paste, oyster sauce and soy sauce, then add the noodles and stir to combine everything. Top with bean sprouts, and serve hot.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2012 at 1:24PM
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Thanks a lot for responding. I will save this to try soon. For tonight, though, I don't have chili paste, my son is allergic to shellfish so I couldn't use oyster sauce, I don't have bean sprouts, and the only mushrooms I have today is a little can I keep for "mushroom emergencies" :), so I don't think it would taste the same.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2012 at 1:45PM
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Here is my version of Chinese Meatballs. Just a basic outline. I served them with sauted vegetables with bean sprouts. Seasoned with a spicy chili sauce.

Home Cookin Chapter: Recipes From Thibeault's Table

Asian Meatballs
April 2010

Just seasoned ground pork or turkey/chicken breast with garlic, cilantro, ginger, green onion, sesame oil, a splash of rice wine vinegar and a spoonful of hot garlic chili paste. Browned the meatballs. Remove from the pan. Sauted the onions and peppers. Removed from the pan. Sauted some garlic and ginger, added some chicken broth, another splash of rice wine vinegar, a spoon of chili sauce, put the meatballs back into the pan and simmered for 20 minutes. Added the onions and peppers back into the pan, along with bean sprouts and green onion, tossed to heat and served over rice.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2012 at 5:59PM
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Thanks Ann, that's right up my palate.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2012 at 6:17PM
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Here's the recipe I've always used:


2 (20 oz.) cans water chestnuts
3 bunches green onions, chopped
5 lb. lean ground pork
1/4 cup soy sauce
6 eggs, slightly beaten
1 Tbsp. salt
2-1/2 cups fine dry breadcrumbs
Oil for frying

Drain and chop water chestnuts; chop onions (top and all). Mix both with meat. Add remaining ingredients, except for the cornstarch and oil. Mix thoroughly with your hands. Chill. Form into balls, using 1 rounded teaspoon for each. Roll lightly in cornstarch. Fry at 370 degrees F. until well browned. Refrigerate until about ready to serve. Warm before serving. Serve with Chinese meatball sauce.

1 cup vinegar
2 cups pineapple juice
3/4 cup sugar
2 cups canned beef consomme
1 can water
2 Tblsp. soy sauce
3 Tblsp. grated fresh ginger
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 cup cold water

Heat together vinegar, pineapple juice, sugar, consomme, water, soy sauce and ginger. Mix cornstarch with cold water and gradually stir into vinegar mixture. Cook, stirring constantly, until clear and thickened. Serve meatballs in just enough sauce to form a slight glaze in hot chafing dish. More sauce and meatballs can be added as needed.
**Note**: Five tablespoons chopped crystallized ginger may be used in place of fresh ginger.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2012 at 7:16PM
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Thank you both for the additional recipes. I had to start dinner early, so I just saw them now.
Ann T I want to live with you! Everything you post always looks so beautiful & delicious. I laughed out loud when I saw that dinner picture because of course, mine looked nothing like it. I ended up checking out a couple recipes on-line, and sort of combining them. My meatballs had green onion, garlic, coconut aminos, sesame oil, ginger, egg, breadcrumbs, and coconut oil, which I would leave out the next time. I baked them and while they were in the oven I made a sauce of chicken broth, cornstarch, coconut aminos, a splash of rice vinegar (I guess that should have gone in the meatballs?), honey, onion & garlic powder, ginger, sesame oil & scallions. I repeated a lot of what was in the meatballs in the sauce, as I wasn't really sure what to do. In the end, it tasted pretty good anyway.
Ann, I've never bought chili paste, but I'll get some. When you mentioned chili sauce - is that store bought, or did you make it somehow using the paste? Thanks again everyone!

    Bookmark   September 10, 2012 at 8:16PM
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pat t - that looks like a great party recipe. How many meatballs does it yield?



    Bookmark   September 10, 2012 at 8:55PM
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Seagrass - I haven't made it years, but it makes a TON! I used to make the entire recipe and freeze some to cook later.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 3:52PM
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