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I need a hero July 23, 2010

Posted by Peeps in Cooking, random stuff.
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No, not this one:

More like a sub, a hoagie or even a grinder.

I’ve been wanting a decent meatball sandwich for a while now.  Since I don’t know where to buy one around here, we used the excuse of needing to get stuff out of the freezer.  Even something small.  My wonderful wife agreed.  It had been a while since she had a meatball sandwich, too.

So, we pulled a one pound package of cubed chuck out of the freezer to thaw in the fridge for a couple days.  We have not bought ground beef in about a year now.  A while ago, Toys send me a very long article on the dangers of buying commercially ground beef.  Since we already had the grinder, it just made sense to do it ourselves all the time.  It’s only an extra couple minutes work, and it’s so worth it in terms of safer and much tastier meat.
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The meat along with salt and pepper and a couple tablespoons worth of parsley from the garden and a couple minced cloves of garlic go into the grinder. What comes out is nicely seasoned ground beef.
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Now, one of the ways to help get your grinder clean after using it is to run some stale bread through it. Fortunately, I needed some bread crumbs for the meatballs. So I ran through a few slices of good quality sandwich bread through the grinder and into the bowl with the meat. (Cook’s Illustrated uses this technique. Who am I to question them?)
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A half cup of milk, one egg and a quarter cup of Parmesan cheese added to the meat will complete your meatball mix nicely.
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Mix everything together, but don’t overwork it. Be gentle. You want tender meatballs. Not those horrible things they have at office Christmas parties. Once everything comes together, cover it and put in the fridge to let the flavors come together. And it’s easier to work with when the mixture is cold.
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Now when we were planning the menu for this week, we decided to try something new as a side.  Our most recent issue of Food & Wine had a recipe for Oven Fries with Herbs and Pecorino in it.  So, while the meatball mix rested, I got the V-slicer out and being very careful because the thing is dangerous, cut some potatoes for the rest of our meal.
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When it’s about time to start dinner, I got out the spring-loaded disher to make the meatballs.
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Consistent size is so helpful in cooking.
Now, normally I would just put the meatballs directly into simmering sauce. but because we used chuck, we wanted to get some of the fat out so we wouldn’t end up with greasy sauce. So they went into a saute pan with a little oil to brown and render a little of the fat.
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Then into the sauce to finish cooking. The sauce? I admit, I cheated. At work, my boss only keeps his sauces in the stores for so long. They then go into the freezer. Eventually, if they still don’t sell, he throws them out. Or let’s me take some home for free. Because throwing out perfectly good marinara is just wrong.
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While the meatballs are cooking, the fries go into the oven. Since I linked to the recipe, I won’t give you play by play.
Once the fries are ready, it’s time to build a sandwich.
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The meatballs go onto rolls with some sauce and a slice of Provolone cheese. It melts well, and doesn’t make a mess like shredded Mozzarella can. The sandwiches go under the broiler until the cheese has melted, and you’re ready to serve.
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We had enough for dinner and lunch the next day. And there’s still some left in the fridge to put over spaghetti for a lazy weekend dinner.

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Comments

1. mazco34 - July 23, 2010

For shame. With your love of the Crescent City and not to mention “Po’ boy” is a sin.

But I’m still glad you got to enjoy a good sloppy meatball sub. It’s a fun thing to have marinara all over your face.

BTW – Hero King is still a great sub shop.

Peeps - July 25, 2010

I’ve never actually had a Po’ boy in New Orleans. There’s so much good food, I couldn’t bring myself to just get a sandwich.

2. sjbraun - July 24, 2010

Cute title!
Boy, those look good. Much better than the leftovers we just ate. On the plus side, the fridge is getting cleaned out, though 🙂

Peeps - July 25, 2010

They were awesome. I can hardly wait to do them again.


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