Food | Bourbon Apricot Meatballs

| December 2, 2014

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Lisa Harp, Valdosta Today Food Contributor:

Here’s a great holiday party idea that’s sure to be a hit.

In case you hadn’t realized, it’s December! With friends and family coming over, I wanted to share a great recipe I found on one of my blogs. Delicious meatballs with a rich sauce.

The secret for making good meatballs, according to this recipe, is white bread soaked in milk plus some parmesan cheese. The combination adds moisture, richness and an unique quality. They are actually really simple to make and we hope negates the need to purchase the frozen meatballs at the grocery store again. The extra time commitment is well worth it – trust me.

These tasty bites will become a holiday standard for you and favorite of your guests.

Makes about 36 meatballs

110114 2Meatballs

  • ½ Lb. Ground Pork
  • ½ Lb. Ground Beef
  • 5 Cloves Garlic
  • 1 Small Onion, diced
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 Slices White Bread, crusts removed
  • 2 Tablespoons Milk
  • ¼ Cup Flat Leaf Parsley, minced
  • ½ teaspoon Salt
  • ½ teaspoon Pepper
  • 1/3 Cup Grated Parmesan

In a small bowl add the milk and small torn pieces of the white bread and let sit. In a small pan add the olive oil and onions and sauté over medium heat for 5 to 10 minutes or until soft and translucent.

Remove from the heat.

In a large bowl, add the pork, ground beef, sautéed onion, soaked bread in milk, parsley, salt, pepper, flat leaf parsley and parmesan cheese. Mix well together with your hands until all ingredients are incorporated. Use a spoon to scoop out 1 tablespoon of the meat mixture and form into a ball. Add to a large skillet with a bit of olive oil on the bottom. When the pan is full of meatballs, cook on the stove until each side is browned then place into a preheated 350 degree oven for another 20 to 25 minutes or until completely cooked.

Bourbon Apricot Sauce

  • 2 Tablespoon Butter
  • 1 Medium Onion, diced
  • 2 Medium Cloves Garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 Cup Apricot Preserves
  • 1 Cup Chili Sauce
  • ½ Cup + 1 Tablespoon Bourbon
  • 1/3 Cup Cider Vinegar
  • ¼ Cup Packed Brown Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 Tablespoon Spicy Brown Mustard
  • ½ Medium Jalapeno, finely diced

110114 3Melt the butter in a medium sauce pan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the preserves, chili sauce, ½ cup bourbon, the vinegar, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, mustard and jalapeno and bring to a simmer. Lower the heat to low and simmer while stirring often. It should reduce to 3 cups after 20 minutes. Stir in the remaining 1 tablespoon of Bourbon and remove from the heat. Add the meatballs and serve.

1497774_10200335595231062_205163012_n (2)Lisa Harp owns Plat du Jour Gourmet Delivery, delivering delicious meals to businesses and individuals all over South Georgia and North Florida since 2003. She has been featured in Southern Living magazine, including the Best of the Year recipes and cookbook, as well as online and newspapers. You can learn more about her business by visiting her website at

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