Monthly Archives: March 2011

Freezer Cooking: Basic Meatball Recipe

These basic meatballs are great to have fully cooked and frozen.  There are all sorts of way to fancy them up later on.

Ingredients:

  • 4# ground beef
  • 2 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1 cup dry bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups milk
  • Generous sprinkle steak seasoning (optional)

Combine all ingredients in a large metal or glass bowl.  I use 2 large spoons to start mixing and finish up with my hands.  Shape into balls about 1 1/2″ across.  Place on to lightly greased cookie sheet.  Bake at 375 F for 25-30 minutes or until nicely browned.

If your meat produced much grease during baking carefully pour it off.  Allow cookie sheets to cool enough to touch.  Set them on a level surface in your freezer for about 30-90 minutes until balls hold their shape when gently squeezed.  Use a metal spatula to remove them from the cookie sheet.  Freeze in large Ziploc bags or airtight Tupperware style containers.   Label containers with “Basic Meatballs: Fully Cooked.”  The original recipe was supposed to yield 80 meatballs, I got 93.

I’ll be posting more ground beef freezer cooking recipes over the next few days and then wrapping up with a post full of tips on how to plan your cooking day.  If you have a recipe you’d like me to pass along send the link or the recipe to me at oneroanpony AT hotmail DOT com.

EDITED TO ADD:  I posted this first based on what I remembered from last year.  After just doing it again I have a few things to add.  I added several different seasonings including: parsley, Italian seasoning, Pampered Chef Southwest seasoning, Mrs. Dash Original, homemade garlic powder, Lawry’s Seasoning Salt, and the salt and pepper.  So pretty much just don’t be afraid to add what you like!  Also, for the mixing this time I used my hand mixer which worked much better and saved me from having to scrub my hands as well afterward.

I also changed the way I handled the meatballs after cooking.  Right after pouring off the grease I used a metal spatula to gently scrape the pan and loosen them.  Then I slid them together until they just touched.  That way I could combine several pans worth on to one pan for the flash freezing.  By the time I was done rearranging them the pans were cool enough to go in the freezer.  They easily broke apart when it was time to bag them.

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2011 Garden: Seed Order

  • Amish Paste $2.50
  • Big Month $1.75
  • Roma $1.75
  • Rutgers $2.00
  • Sugar Snap Snow Peas $2.50
  • Golden Bantam 12-row Corn $3.00
  • All ordered from rareseeds.com, just like every other year.  $3.00 shipping.  I’m pretty sure this is my smallest seed order since we’ve lived here.  Hopefully, I’ll keep good enough records this year that I can narrow down the varieties and save seed eventually.  I grew the same 4 tomato varieties last year but I started all the seeds from each variety together in one tray and some trays got neglected so that wasn’t really a far study.

    2011 Garden: Seed Stash

    I skipping the fluff and going for the basics that will save the most $$$ on groceries.  This means tomatoes, potatoes, corn, cucumbers, carrots, and onions.  I’m also planning to do some peas and beans.  Even though they’re cheap to buy they’re easy to grow and I enjoy fresh peas in the pod.  If we have enough room I’m throwing some pumpkins in too, just for fun.

    Seeds from my stash:

    • Black Diamond cucumbers
    • Boston Pickling cucumbers
    • Danvers 126 carrots
    • Tall Telephone peas
    • Kentucky Wonder pole beans
    • Black Aztec corn
    • Rouge Vif D’Etampes pumpkins
    • Connecticut Field pumpkins
    • Dill
    • Short Stuff sunflowers
    • Arikara sunflowers

    So I need to order tomato seed and snap peas, and maybe another variety of corn.  I’ll get potatoes and onions at our local Big Acre store.

    Just getting organized folks!  How are your garden plans coming along?