A love letter to the meatball

Food & Drink

A love letter to the meatball

Hans-OlovIf you had to write down everything you know about meatballs, how long would it take? Could you fill up a whole sheet of paper?

Hans-Olov Öberg can. In fact, he wrote an entire book about meatballs. Öberg is a co-author of The Swedish Meatball Bible.

We had the chance to chat with this meatball guru about the book’s inspiration – his dad – and were left salivating over one of his favorite recipes.

Enjoy the quick Q&A below.

Where did you get the inspiration for a book solely focused on meatballs?

I’ve always loved meatballs. My dad was an excellent cook, albeit with a very limited repertoire, and his meatballs were the high point of any Christmas celebration. He handed me his recipe just six month before his death, and I’ve been the one making the Christmas balls since then. But there’s more to meatballs than just the Swedish standard version, and being somewhat of a mad scientist in the kitchen myself I have been experimenting with different recipes for many years. When I teamed up with Ralph Lindgren and Claes Grahn-Möller (the latter a Michelin star cook) there were simply no limits…

Can you give us a tip for making the perfect meatball?

13 Ko¦êttbullar
Be fearless! If you have an idea for a different kind of meatball, go for it.

Would you share a recipe with our readers?

Relax! No puppies are used in the making of this pie. Instead, we take inspiration from the classic British steak and kidney pie, the result being a meatball variation.

British Bulldog Pie

Ingredients:

  • 1 kg ground beef, medium ground
  • 1 dl breadcrumbs
  • 1.5 dl regular milk

Pie dough:

  • 3 dl flour
  • 75 g butter
  • 4 tbsp ice cold water

Filling:

  • 250 g mushrooms
  • 2 finely chopped garlic cloves
  • 3 tbsp finely chopped yellow onion
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 dl ox bouillon
  • 1 dl Guinness
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce

Directions:

Cook the filling, covered, for 10 minutes at low heat.

Fry the meatballs as usual.

Work the pie ingredients together into a smooth dough. Put the dough into a medium-sized pie dish with high sides. Save a third of the dough for the piecrust.

Place the meatballs together with the filling in the pie. Add Parmesan, grated generously over everything (bulldogs are famous their love of parmesan cheese!).

Put the piecrust on and bake at 200 grader on the lowest shelf in the oven for about 30 minutes or until the crust turns a nice color.

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