Sassy Radish

Agrodolce Meatballs
Adapted from Food & Wine, thank you, Grace Parisi

If, to you, meatballs mean a whole day affair, I have your quick-dinner answer here. These are ready, prep-and-all, in forty-five minutes (that’s under an hour), and much of the cooking time is hands-off, which means you can start cleaning up your kitchen from dinner prep (less work for you after dinner – bonus)! If you keep a kosher kitchen and pork is a no-no, swap in turkey or chicken, or even veal in place of pork. Just don’t make it all beef as it won’t taste as delicate. To make things even easier, get yourself a large saute pan (the largest I have is this 6-quart All-Clad one I link to below) and you will be able to fry all your meatballs in one fell swoop.

3/4 pound ground sirloin
3/4 pound ground pork
2 large eggs
1/4 cup plain dry bread crumbs
1/4 cup dried currants or raisins
1/4 cup pine nuts
1 tablespoon drained capers
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh mint, plus additional for garnish
1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus additional
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus additional
All-purpose flour, for dusting
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups chicken stock
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
Crusty bread, for serving

1. In a large bowl, combine the the ground beef and pork, eggs, bread crumbs, currants, pine nuts, capers, and mint. Season with salt and pepper and knead, gently, to combine. Roll the mixture into meatballs the size of golfballs and dust with flour.

2. In a large skillet (I like to use my 6-quart All-Clad saute pan for this), heat the olive oil until shimmering. Add the meatballs in a single layer and cook over moderate heat, turning once or twice, until browned and nearly cooked through, 7 to 8 minutes. Tilt the skillet and spoon off as much fat as possible.

3. Add the broth, vinegar, and sugar and season lightly with salt and pepper. Cover partially and cook over moderately low heat, stirring, until the sauce is reduced to 1/2 cup and the meatballs are fully cooked, 8 to 12 minutes. Serve with crusty bread.

Makes 16 to 18 meatballs (Serves 4)

agrodolce meatballs originally published on

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