Prep 1 hr 15 mins
Cook 1 hr 30 mins
I was given this recipe by a friend many years ago. I was told it originally belonged to a woman who owned a modeling agency in Boston and had reason to entertain many in the fashion world. No matter how elegant a menu was being served, guests counted on these delicious meatballs being on the appetizer table. They always disappeared quickly then, and they disappear quickly now.
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 2 lbs ground beef
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 3 tablespoons chili sauce
- 2 tablespoons dried parsley flakes
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄2 teaspoon black pepper, divided
- 1 quart vegetable juice cocktail (32 ounces)
- 1 (1 lb) box light brown sugar
- 1 cup white vinegar
- 3 garlic cloves, halved
- 30 prunes, pitted
- Mash minced garlic with ground beef, eggs, chili sauce, parsley flakes, salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Shape meatballs into 75 to 85 meatballs.
- Combine vegetable juice, brown sugar, vinegar, garlic cloves and remaining pepper in a large sauce pot. Bring mixture to a boil.
- Drop meatballs into the juice mixture. Reduce heat to low and cook 40 minutes. Add prunes and cook 20 minutes more.
- Just a reminder: this recipe calls for a quart (32-ounces) of vegetable juice; if you buy the 46-ounce can, do not use the whole thing.
- Drain off some, but not all, of the sauce before putting meatballs and prunes into a chafing dish. Serve hot with toothpicks.
- It's best to make these a day ahead, then refrigerate them. When it is time to serve, skim off the fat on top of mixture and reheat.
- To make 115 to 125 meatballs, increase meat mixture ingredients by half, leave the sauce ingredients as they are.
The recipe and preface appear in Food Editors' Favorites Treasured Recipes, Barbara Gibbs Ostmann & Jane Baker, 1983 ISBN 0-8437-3396-9 (pbk). It is rather sweet. To make it more tangy, I added dry mustard to taste at the end.