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Monday, January 10, 2011

Recipe for Sweet and Sour Meatballs

This recipe for sweet and sour meatballs is easy to make but it does take a bit of time, so I think it is best suited for a night when you have plenty of time. Don't let that dissuade you though, it really is easy and straightforward and a very tasty asian flavored dish that is under 300 calories (not including the rice).
Makes 6 servings, each approximately 247 calories, 5 grams fat, 30 grams carbs, 3 grams fiber, 24 grams protein, 6 WW Points+ (not including the rice)

1 lb lean ground bison (or beef)
½ cup finely diced onion
4 TBSP egg whites
¼ cup whole wheat panko bread crumbs
½ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
¼ cup white whole wheat flour (or AP)
1 tsp garlic powder
1 ½ cup red bell pepper, diced in bite sized pieces
1 ½ cup green bell pepper, diced in bite sized pieces
1 ½ cup mushrooms, diced in bite size pieces
1 ½ cup fresh pineapple cubes
2 cups beef broth
3 TBSP low sodium soy sauce
1 TBSP Worcestershire sauce
1/3 cup rice vinegar
2 TBSP honey
2 TBSP cornstarch, divided
Salt and pepper
2 TBSP Canola oil

Process the panko bread crumbs in food processor for one minute. 
In a bowl, mix together gently the bison, onion, egg whites, panko bread crumbs, crushed red pepper flakes and a tsp of kosher salt and 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper.

Make about 30 meatballs (I used a #70 scoop) and place on cookie sheet in freezer for 15 minutes to firm up, but not freeze.

While meatballs are chilling, chop up peppers, mushrooms and pineapple.

Mix together the broth, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, honey and 1 TBSP of cornstarch.
Mix together the flour, garlic powder, a tsp each of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Heat the canola oil over med-high heat.
Remove the meatballs from the freezer and roll in flour mixture to lightly coat.
Cook meatballs in batches until well browned, about 4-5 minutes per batch.

Place meatballs on paper towels as they are removed from the pan.

Pour off any remaining oil from pan and toss in the veggies, stir frying for about 4 minutes until brown and beginning to soften.
Add in the pineapple and stir fry a minute.
Add in the liquid mixture and the meatballs. Bring to a gentle boil and check for thickness after a few minutes.  If you would like a thicker sauce, stir remaining 1 TBSP cornstarch into ¼ cup of sauce from the pan in a separate bowl and then stir back into the pan. 
Here is the sauce initially-too thin for me, not really coating things:

Here it is after additional cornstarch, see how it is thick enough to really coat the spoon:

Check for seasoning and add more salt, black pepper and/or red pepper flakes as you desire.

Serve over brown or white rice.

What is a recipe you make that takes a bit more time than usual but is very much worth it?

Printable Recipe

Adapted from this recipe on The Pioneer Woman.