Holiday Hoopla Menu + Meatball Recipe

The Holiday Hoopla kick off party is the biggest night in all the year for Riverview.  And that means lots and lots of food, which means lots and lots of baking and making and cooking the day away in preparation.  We had so many people ask about the recipes, so I thought it would be easier to just post some of the recipes and links and acknowledgements.  There was no rhyme or reason for our menu.  Just trying to make enough good food to feed an army.  So, here are some of the things we served…

  • Sushi from Totto on the Northshore
  • Meatballs using Bella Cucina’s Savory Tomato Jam – recipe below
  • Spicy Glazed Pecans
  • Baked Brie with Apricot and Rosemary Chutney – Note: the chutney makes enough for two wrapped bries, so either plan on buying two rounds of cheese, or cut the chutney recipe in half.  1lb of Phyllo dough will be enough for two rounds of brie
  • Thumbprint Cookies from Federal Bake Shop
  • And lots more…

Meatballs in a Sweet Tomato Sauce

Makes about 50 meatballs

Meatball Ingredients:

  • 1/4 c + 2 Tbs whole milk
  • handful of crackers (not an exact science, just enough to soak up the milk)
  • 1 1/4 – 1 1/2 lbs ground beef
  • 1/2 lb ground pork
  • 1/2 small onion, minced finely
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced finely
  • 2 eggs, whisked lightly
  • 2 oz freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1 Tbs fresh parsley, chopped
  • olive oil for frying

Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 28 oz can whole peeled tomatoes with juice
  • 1 jar of Bella Cucina’s Savory Tomato Jam (which we sell)
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 2 bay leaves
  1. Begin by crushing crackers into a fine crumb.  Combine crackers and milk in a large bowl. Once the milk is soaked up, add the rest of the ingredients, minus the olive oil, and gently mix with your hands until combined.  Form into small balls (roughly the size of ping pong balls or about 1 1/2 inches) and line on baking dish.  Cover and chill for roughly one hour.  While the meatballs are chilling, begin the sauce.
  2. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat.  Add onion and season with salt and pepper.  Cook, stirring, until onion is softened, roughly 7-8 minutes.  Add garlic and cook, stirring, for another 2 minutes, until fragrant.  Add the tomatoes, jam, wine, and bay leaves, bringing to a simmer.  Cover and continue to simmer while continuing with the meatballs.
  3. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.  Heat a large pan on medium high heat.  Add a light coating of olive oil to the pan.  Fry the meatballs, browning on all sides, roughly 8-10 minutes.  Do not crowd the pan.  Once browned on all sides, transfer to a clean rimmed baking pan or sheet.  Repeat with remaining meatballs.  It will take a couple of batches at least depending on the size of your burner and pan.  Once all the meatballs have been browned,  bake in oven  until cooked through, roughly 10 minutes.
  4. While the meatballs are in the oven, remove the sauce from the heat and take out the bay leaves. Using an immersion blender, puree.  Once the meatballs are finished cooking, add to sauce and mix to coat.





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