It’s been a little while since I posted a post-partum or freezer meal for after baby is born. I haven’t done a ton of saving back, even though I wanted to fill the freezer in October, you know, life got in the way. Which is fine, because here it is November and we have a better idea of what we might want to eat in chillier weather, anyway–plus with 2 freezers partially full of meat products, we have plenty to work with, and we wouldn’t have in early October. So… on to the recipe!
The reason I say that the recipe is ‘twice’ is that we have used this family recipe for meatballs as well. The great thing is that you know EXACTLY what you’re putting into them, and don’t have to worry about fillers, unidentified preservatives, etc and can control the amount of fat (via the meat product), quality of the binders (egg and breadcrumbs), and amount of salt that goes into the dish. We like making small meatballs (around an inch in diameter-omit toppings from meatloaf recipe), and often use a small cookie scoop or melon-baller to achieve a consistent size. They are just about perfect to use on hoagie rolls with pizza or spaghetti sauce, mixed with or dunked in barbeque as appetizers or kid-friendly snacks, or dumped in with pasta for a very fast and easy evening meal. Since we pre-bake them (instead of fry) as well, they’re lower in fat, just as easy to portion out, and quick thawing in the microwave or on the stove top. They bake in about 15-25 minutes depending on the size of your meatball, a meat thermometer or chopping the largest one in half at the 15 minute mark will let you know if you need to bake them longer or if they’re ready to cool. We stick them in freezer bags or containers once they are cooled and just grab what we need. We have actually found that they go MUCH further than we had anticipated, even given that the recipe calls for 2 lbs of meat. We typically get several meals, plus a bunch of lunches for the kids out of one batch.
2 lbs ground chuck
1 Cup bread crumbs
8 oz can tomato sauce
1 T worcestershire sauce
1/4 t chili powder
small onion, chopped
salt and pepper
Using blender or food processor use 2 slices of bread to make breadcrumbs. Then process eggs and onion in blender. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and then form into loaf in a greased pan. Spread catsup over the loaf and top with a couple of bacon slices (or bacon grease)– [for a pretty presentation for a potluck, wrap the whole loaf in bacon]. Bake at 350 degrees for about an hour and 15 minutes. [See above for meatball variation.]
Incidentally, we are roughly around the same time as THIS POST was written before Brennan was born. I thought I was pretty prepared with her, so it’s interesting that we’re actually a bit further along this time around. Yeah! I guess I’ve learned a few things!