Here's a tried-and-true recipe for baked meatballs that'll make you want to forget the frying pan. These cute meatballs are stuffed with quail eggs and coated with a lightly sweet and spicy tomato sauce.
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I am going to be 100% honest with you: I absolutely love these meatballs. Not only are they quite easy to make, but they also look cute.
I will also share with you how to make some changes that you may want to try.
Why bake the meatballs?
Because it's much less labor-intensive than the traditional way of cooking meatballs, and the result has nothing to envy fried meatballs. It has become a favorite meatball recipe in our home.
What meat to use
For these meatballs, I've used ground beef, but you can also use ground veal or make a half-and-half mix with ground pork. It also works with ground turkey meat.
Because these are stuffed with eggs, it's not suitable for freezing (eggs don't do well in the freezer). You can, however, form the meatballs and make the sauce and refrigerate both for up to 3 hours, and pop in the oven half an hour before serving. Please add an extra 5 minutes of cooking time if you have chilled them before cooking.
How to serve
These meatballs are great as an appetizer or served as a main dish for lunch or dinner. If you'll serve them as a main dish, they go great with any kind of fries, my suggestions: tostones (of course), oven-fried potatoes, or yuca frita.
I'd suggest you double the sauce and leave some extra (that has not touched raw meat!) for dipping your fritters in.
About this recipe
Using quail eggs means smaller, finger-food-sized meatballs. These are perfect to serve as party food. I bet your guests will love it, mine sure did.
The sauce is not overly sweet, but it does taste sweet(ish), but it works great with the acidic tomato, and the spicy chili.
This recipe yields 12 meatballs, of about 1½ inches each (about 4 centimeters). Served as a main dish it serves 4 people, 3 meatballs each person. I love them as finger food (just need some picks) as part of a picadera platter.
[Recipe + Video] Easy Baked Meatballs Stuffed with Quail Eggs
For the meatballs
For the sauce
- 1 cup tomato sauce
- 2 teaspoons garlic salt, or more, to taste (see notes)
- ½ tablespoon chili flakes
- 1½ tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- Mixing ingredients for meatballs: In a large mixing bowl, combine minced meat, egg, half the bread crumbs, onion powder, pepper, soy sauce, bija, and salt. Mix well until combined.If the meat it's a little too soggy, add two tablespoons of breadcrumbs, and mix again, add another tablespoon if needed.
- Making the meatballs: Place 1½ tablespoon of the meat mixture on your hands and flatten. Place a quail egg on top and wrap it with the meat, making sure the egg is covered completely.Repeat until you finish with the eggs.Set aside in the fridge while you make the sauce.
- Making the sauce: Mix all the ingredients for the sauce. It should be a thick sauce, but if it turns out to liquidy (it depends on the tomato sauce you use), heat over medium heat to reduce to desired consistency stirring constantly to prevent it from sticking and burning.Taste and add extra garlic salt to taste if needed.
- Baking the meatballs: Place the meatballs on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.Bathe them with the sauce, covering them completely.Bake for 25 minutes in preheated oven at 350 ºF [175 ºC].
- Serving: Remove from the oven and wait 5 minutes before serving.
Tips and Notes
Nutritional information is calculated automatically based on ingredients listed. Please consult your doctor if you need precise nutritional information.
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