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The Amazing Disappearing Meatballs w/ Sweet Peanut Sauce

May 30, 2011

I swear that I made meatballs. I’m not hallucinating - I promise that they were in existence at some point. I brought them to a party, and they were there one second and gone the next. Now, it’s possible that this party was attended by a bunch of stealthy magicians, but I’m betting the disappearance actually happened because the meatballs were pretty darn tasty.

Though I must admit, I committed a peanut butter-related crime in making them and diluted the peanut flavor a bit. Before you go have an overreaction, hear me out. Even though adding hoisin sauce, sririacha and red pepper flake took the focus away from the peanut butter flavor a bit, it made the sauce slightly spicier and also gave it a more well-rounded asian flavor.

In addition, the recipe instructs you to roll the coated meatballs in chopped peanuts but… despite my love for peanuts, I couldn’t quite bring myself to do that. There’s something about crunchy things being paired with ground meat that I find a little unsettling. Without them, the meatballs are nice and tender and go well with the thick sauce. See? I’m not crazy. At least, not because of this…

I’m sorry if I’ve let you down my fellow peanut butter lovers, but I promise if you make the recipe, you’ll understand! It’s perfect for parties because it can be made ahead of time, transported easily and heated up right before serving. Its only flaw: there weren’t enough. So, you might want to make a double batch (one for you and the other for your local neglected NPR ladies).

On a bit of a tangent, there are two things that I really enjoy about bringing food to parties:

1) Watching it being gobbled in minutes, as if there’s some kind of impromptu eating contest. I often ponder if it’d be inappropriate to pull out a whistle and cheer people on. Go, go, go!

2) Watching the partygoers stalk the last, lone bite on the plate. You know that everyone wants it, but they try and be “polite”. Pssh. I’m going to spare your groaning tummy and salivating glands and tell you to man up and go for it. Someone has to eat it or it goes to waste, right? May as well be you! Have no shame and dig in. You’re welcome.

[This advice brought to you by The Shameless Peanut Butter Gorgers of America]


The Amazing Disappearing Meatballs with Sweet Peanut Sauce
modified from Everyday with Rachael Ray

1 lb. lean ground turkey
1/2 cup chopped cilantro, plus more for garnish
1/4 cup fresh breadcrumbs
1/4 cup grated onion
2 cloves garlic, grated
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1/4 cup peanut butter (I used PB&Co's Old Fashioned Smooth)
2 Tbsp soy sauce
3 Tbsp sugar
3 Tbsp sesame oil
1 big spoonful Hoisin sauce (about 1-2 Tbsp, to taste)
2 squirts Sririacha (about 2 tsp, to taste)
sprinkle red pepper flake

Mix turkey, cilantro, breadcrumbs, onion, garlic, salt and pepper; roll into 1-tbsp. balls. In medium skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add meatballs and cook through, 6 to 8 minutes.

Meanwhile, mix remaining ingredients and warm in microwave. Toss meatballs with the sauce and sprinkle with remaining cilantro. Serve with toothpicks.
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