Tuesday, July 4, 2000 Living L6

Sma Kottbullar

Small Swedish Meat-balls

Reproduced without permission from Time-Life Books "The Cooking of Scandinavia"
Scandanavian Cooking

To serve 6 to 8 (about 50 meat-balls)


  • ½ ounce butter
  • 4 tablespoons finely chopped onion
  • 1 large potato, mashed (1 cup)
  • 3 tablespoons fine dried bread-crumbs
  • 1 pound lean minced beef
  • 3 ounces double cream
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley (optional)
  • 1 ounce butter
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • ½ cup single or double cream
   In a small frying pan, melt the ½ ounce of butter over a moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the onions and cook for about 5 minutes, until they are soft and translucent but not brown.
   In a large bowl, combine the onions, mashed potato, bread-crumbs, meat, cream, salt, egg and optional parsley. Knead vigorously with both hands or beat with a wooden spoon until all the ingredients are well blended and the mixture is smooth and fluffy. Shape into small balls about 1 inch in diameter. Arrange the meat-balls in one layer on a baking sheet or a flat tray, cover them with plastic wrapping and chill for at least 1 hour before cooking.
   Over a high heat, melt the 1 ounce of butter and 2 tablespoons of oil in a heavy 10- to 12-inch skillet. When the foam subsides, add meat-balls, 8 to 10 at a time. Reduce the heat to moderate and fry the balls on all sides, shaking the pan almost
constantly to roll the balls around in the hot fat to help keep their shape. In 8 to 10 minutes the meat-balls should be brown outside and show no trace of pink inside when one is broken open with a knife. Add more butter and oil to skillet as needed, and transfer each finished batch to a casserole or baking dish and keep warm in a 200° F oven.
   If the meat-balls are to be served as a main course with noodles or potatoes, you may want to make a sauce with the pan juice. Remove from the heat, pour off all the fat from the pan, and stir in 1 tablespoon of flour. Quickly stir in ½ cup of single or double cream and boil the sauce over a moderate heat for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly, until it is thick and smooth. Pour over the meat-balls and serve.
   If the meat-balls are to be served as an hors d'oeuvre or as part of a smorgasbord, they should be cooked as above, but formed into smaller balls and served without the sauce.
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