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Playing Swedish Meatballs and Egg Noodles


  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1 small white onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 1/2 cups veal stock or chicken and beef stock combined
  • 3/4 pound ground pork
  • 3/4 pound ground veal
  • 1 egg
  • 2 slices white bread, torn, soaked briefly in about 1/4 cup milk and squeezed of excess liquid
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped
  • 5 crispy gingersnap cookies, ground up in a food processor
  • 2 tablespoons currant, lingonberry or grape jelly
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons crème fraiche or sour cream
  • 1 pound wide egg noodles
  • 1/4 cup combined finely chopped chives and fresh dill
  • 1/2 cup cornichons or baby gherkins, finely chopped


Serves: 4-6


Place a large pot of salted water over high heat and bring it up to a boil.
Place a large pan over medium-high heat and melt 2 tablespoons butter. Add the onion to the pan and cook until the onion is very tender, 5-6 minutes. Remove half the onion and cool. Over the onions in the pan, sprinkle the flour, stirring to incorporate, and cook for about 1 minute. Whisk the stock into the pan and bring up to a bubble. Let thicken to a loose gravy. Reduce heat to low and simmer while you prepare the meatballs.
In a medium-size mixing bowl, combine the cooled onion, ground meats, egg, milk-soaked bread, salt, pepper, allspice, nutmeg and parsley. Using a small scoop or spoons, roll the meat mixture into walnut-sized balls. Drop the meatballs into the pan of simmering gravy, increase the heat to medium and simmer the meatballs in the gravy, stirring occasionally, until cooked through, about 10 minutes. Stir the ground ginger snaps into gravy and jelly to taste for sweetness and balance.
Salt the boiling water and cook noodles to tender. Drain, toss with remaining 2 tablespoons butter, salt, chopped chives and dill.
Remove meatballs from heat and stir in crème fraiche. Serve meatballs and gravy over herbed egg noodles garnished with cornichons.