The meatball is a truly universal comfort food. Consider how many cuisines around the world have their unique version of the humble meatball; from Japan’s char-grilled Tsukune, traditionally served on skewers and dipped in egg yolk, to football-shaped Koftes in the Middle East, and Mexican Albondigas, often served in soup – there aren’t many cultures that don’t have their own take on the meatball.
Though we are lucky to have access to so many of these comforting dishes within the cultural melting pot that is Australia, some would argue that the mighty rissole is particularly synonymous with suburban Aussie fare, rousing memories of Hills Hoists, sprinkler-jumping and that deliciously, smoky smell of a backyard barbecue.
It’s a food that brings families together, offering an opportunity to help mum in the kitchen when she carefully shapes the meatballs, chatting comfortably whilst performing this rhythmic chore. Meatballs also make for versatile leftovers and next-day lunchbox surprises. They are a common favourite, often on permanent rotation but always remaining that little bit special, especially with kids.
Our co-founders, Maria and Eva, have their own fond memories of their mother, Gabi, making meatballs. The dish was always a firm favourite, served with buttery, mashed potatoes and sautéed carrots with parsley. “We loved this dish so much and still do. Now, our children cheer when mum comes over and brings meatballs with mash for us for dinner”, says Maria. Gabi’s signature meatball dish incorporates paprika and a variety of herbs blended into pork mince and shallow-fried. “She makes them in a traditional German way and we called them Hackfleischbällchen”, says Eva. This meal is the inspiration behind our Mama’s Meatball Blend and you can find her simple and sentimental recipe Mama's Classic German Meatballs with Mashed Potatoes and Carrots.
Maria developed Mama’s Meatball Blend with a nod to mothers everywhere, a secret weapon for a quick and delicious dinner that, in its most basic form, requires only the spice blend mince and a pan. “This blend is our way of honouring the thousands of family meals that our own mother and mothers around the world cook over a lifetime. It is an easy, mid-week winner that can be made in bulk and repurposed many times”.
Take a look at Mama’s Meatball Blend and read our tips for making the perfect meatballs. Or perhaps you’re looking for more of a challenge in expanding your meatball repertoire? We have compiled a summary of all the options for baking, boiling, frying and braising for those keen to experiment.
There are so many meatball recipes to choose from, and when it comes to repurposing this staple family favourite, the sky is truly the limit. Read on for inspiration to create next-day winners that will level-up your leftover game.