Friday, September 3, 2010

Meatballs and Biscuits

This one is a Prows family favorite that my mother in law, Cathy, makes all of the time.  My husband and all of his siblings really enjoy it, and I thought I would give it a bit of a face lift if you will.  The traditional recipe is based in basic meatballs, cream of mushroom soup gravy, and biscuits.  I decided to make homemade mushroom gravy, and upgrade the meatballs a bit, and take it to a different level.  Happily, the family enjoyed them and I was complimented on them and asked for the recipe.  I share it with all of you here!

Meatballs and Biscuits

I will start with the meatballs, then move to the gravy, and then move on to the biscuit dough....

1 1/4 lb ground beef
3/4 lb lean pork sausage (usually the size of the Jimmy Dean Lean tube)
1 tbsp worchestershire sauce
1 c breadcrumbs
1 egg
1 tsp each garlic powder and onion powder
1/2 tsp dijon mustard

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Mix meats with all other ingredients til well blended.  Form into balls about a 1/2 inch thick, and place in a greased 13x9 in. baking dish, and bake for about 25 minutes.

While Baking Meatballs, make...

Mushroom Gravy

1 lb mushrooms, sliced
1 can chicken broth (about 2 cups)
4 tbsp butter, plus 1 more (separated from each other)
3 tbsp flour
1/2 c milk
1/2 tsp onion powder
1 tbsp worchestershire sauce

Melt 1 tbsp of the butter in a skillet, then add mushrooms.  It will look like a lot, but they generally shrink when sautéed.  Cook them til they are about half their original volume.  While this is going, melt the other 4 tbsp of butter in a medium saucepan.  Add flour to the melted butter, and whisk.  It will be still kind of thin, not as thick and dough like as when I make a white sauce.  Add chicken broth to the butter mixture, and stir till all lumps are out of your roux.  Add milk and whisk well.  Add worchestershire, and stir well, and then add mushrooms (at this point, ditch the whisk and use a wooden spoon or something).  Simmer on Low for the rest of the time til the meatballs are done baking the first half of the time.

While simmering gravy and still waiting for meatballs to finish, make...

Biscuit Dough

2 c all purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
7 tbsp COLD butter, cut into small pieces
3/4 c milk

Blend dry ingredients together with a fork.  Add butter, and rub in with fingers or cut in with pastry blender.  Add milk and continue to mix with hands.  Dust with more flour and then roll out to 1/4 inch thickness, and cut with biscuit cutter.  Should make about 12 biscuits.

Lastly, pull out the meatballs from the oven, and pour the gravy on top of the meatballs.  Top with biscuits, and bake another 20 minutes.   By then, the meatballs should be fully cooked and the biscuits will be golden on top.  Takes a bit longer because you're baking the biscuits at 375 instead of 425, but you don't want to burn the gravy and meatballs while baking the biscuits.  When you take it out of the oven, just to keep the top of the biscuits softer, it might be good to brush or rub butter on the top of the biscuits.


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