They came rolling into our contest courtesy of Food52er swedishturkey, who adapted the recipe from her husband's great-grandmother's version. Recently, we had a chance to catch up with swedishturkey to get the low-down on this recipe. Read on for more details—then, get meatball-ing!
Could you tell us more about how you and your husband developed the recipe from his great-grandmother's version? Was there any ingredient that you added? Anything you removed?
The main tweak to the original recipe is that we omitted the onions. When my husband was a child, however, his great-grandmother would make a separate batch of meatballs without the onions for him. We also added the step of warming the milk prior to mixing in the breadcrumbs. We noticed this aids in making the meatballs smooth and stay together better during the cooking process. The cream sauce was created entirely by me and my husband, over time tweaking the ingredients that are often found in the sauce.
We absolutely loved the addition of potato—it makes the meatballs so, so tender and juicy. Was that in your husband's great-grandmother's original recipe?
The potato was the family secret to making deliciously tender meatballs. If we had to guess, she added them because potatoes are used in abundance in Swedish cuisine—they are cheap, and a good binding agent.
How often do you make and eat this recipe? How often do you make it for a gathering?
We make these every couple of months for dinner at home. My husband wanted to bring a recipe from Sweden to our Christmas table one year, and my German grandmother absolutely loved them, saying they reminded her of ones she had as a little girl. We've made enough to share with the entire extended family for every Thanksgiving and Christmas since then.
What are some of your other favorite recipes on Food52? If you had to pick one to go with these meatballs, which would it be and why?
Ella Quittner is a a writer at Food52. She covers food, travel, wellness, lifestyle, home, novelty snacks, and internet-famous sandwiches. You can follow her on Instagram @equittner, or Twitter at @ellaquittner.