These spicy meatballs are called "Lion's Head" because of their large size. Also, lions are believed to ward off evil. You can make the meatballs a day or two ahead, store them covered in the refrigerator, and heat them in the sauce before serving. Decrease the red pepper for a milder flavor.
1/2 cup light coconut milk
1/2 cup soy milk
2 tablespoons minced peeled fresh ginger
2 teaspoons minced hot red chile pepper
1 tablespoon chopped green onions
2 tablespoons Thai fish sauce
1 pound ground round or ground pork
1/3 cup chopped green onions
1/4 cup chopped water chestnuts
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
1 teaspoon minced hot red chile pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon grated lemon rind
How to Make It
To prepare sauce, combine first 6 ingredients in a small bowl.
To prepare meatballs, combine ground pork and next 9 ingredients (pork through salt) in a large bowl, and shape mixture into 8 meatballs. Heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add meatballs; cook 7 minutes, browning on all sides. Drain well.
Place sauce in a large saucepan; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add meatballs; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 8 minutes. Garnish with basil and rind.
These are absolutely fabulous if you like spicy, strongly flavored foods. We adore them with a side of Eden udon noodles or soba noodles and the CL sesame roasted asparagus or other Asian vegetable. I also use 1/2 ground humanely raised pork and 1/2 grass-fed beef. Other than adding a little (1 tsp.) cornstarch to thicken the sauce in the last minute of cooking, I follow the recipe exactly. Because I have to watch my weight, one meatball is fine for me, but my husband eats three.
I look forward to making these once a year for Chinese New Year. To make a thicker sauce, skip the soy milk. Light coconut milk is a little tasteless so I use regular. To cut the fat content, I make lots of sauteed veggies to go with.
The recipe is a bit over complicated for no special reason--why flour AND cornstarch? I use fish sauce in the meatballs rather than soy. I have found that I like the texture better with a mix of pork and beef.
There was a lot going on in this recipe! From the ginger, to the green onions, to the chile pepper, to the coconut milk, it is a lot of wonderful flavor packed in. The only thing I felt got lost was the ground beef itself! I would use a little bit more beef to make these meatballs a bit meatier next time.
We liked really these! I omitted the water chesnuts, swapped out fish sauce for oyster sauce, added some chopped jalapeno and a little bit of Splenda.
Eat Well. Lose Weight. Live Healthy. Delicious and healthy recipes customized for you!