Wednesday, July 1, 2015

I HEART...Porcupine Meatballs


Everybody loves Wednesday, right?
The week's half over.  The weekend is on the way.
What's not to love?
Each Wednesday, I want to share something with you
that I absolutely love and can't live without!


Several years ago, I was the editor for our church cookbook. It has over 400 recipes and was a huge success. I think I use that cookbook more than any I own, and trust me, I have a lot. One of the recipes I found was from my friend, Taryn Brodie, for Porcupine Meatballs. I remember my mother making them when I was little. Taryn's recipe was simple so I gave them a try. Years later, it is one of our favorite meals. I have tweaked it a little over time, not because of any problems, but to suit my tastes and what I had on hand. It only takes a pound of ground beef and a box of beef Rice-A-Roni. A tasty and filling main dish for less than $5! Give it a try soon. I know your family will love it, too!

Porcupine Meatballs
one pound ground beef
one box beef-flavored Rice-A-Roni*
one egg, lightly beaten
beef boullion paste or cubes
water

Mix the ground beef and egg with the seasoning packet and rice/noodles. Form into small balls and brown off in a pan. I don't add any oil to my pan. The meat has enough fat to keep from sticking. They do not have to be cooked through at this stage. I like to brown them on high heat and get some good color on them. I ususally brown them in two batches.


Once the meatballs are browned, dump the fat if necessary and add two cups of water and either a tablespoon of beef boullion paste or a couple of beef boullion cubes and stir until dissolved. Add meatballs to liquid and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cover. Cook about 30 minutes or until rice and noodles are completely cooked. 


You will know the meatballs are ready when most of the liquid has been absorbed.


* I have been buying the family-sized box of Rice-A-Roni lately. It just bulks up the meatballs a little more and makes it go farther.

I once made these for a church fellowship. I browned them off in a skillet, but then put the meatballs and the liquid in a crockpot and cooked them on low overnight. They turned out totally diferent but were really good! When you prepare them on the stovetop, the rice and noodles maintain a bit of their texture. In the crockpot, it cooked longer and lower and the texture was so soft and smooth. Plus, it intensified the beef flavor of the cooking liquid. Both ways were a success if you ask me!

I usually serve these with green beans and mashed potatoes.

These make great last minute meals. I always have frozen ground beef and an egg. And the Rice-A-Roni keeps forever in the pantry. Winn Dixie ususally has it on sale as part of their 10 for 10 deals. Easy, yummy and economical!

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I'm so glad you stopped by my neck of the woods!
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