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Hawaiian Sweet and Sour Meatballs

Hawaiian Sweet and Sour MeatballsFor an economical and delicious taste of the tropics, try this simple dish made with moist and flavorful meatballs in a sweet and sour sauce with chunks of pineapple, onion and bell pepper.

Recipe Ingredients:

1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

Sweet and Sour Sauce:
1 medium onion, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 medium bell peppers, any color, seeded and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 cups fresh pineapple chunks, or 1 (20-ounce) can pineapple chunks in juice, drained*
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 cup water
1 1/4 cups pineapple juice
1/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
3 tablespoons seasoned or plain rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon beef base or bouillon granules
2 tablespoons vegetable oil - divided use

Hot cooked jasmine or other long-grain rice for accompaniment

Cooking Directions:

  1. For Meatballs: In a bowl, mix all ingredients together well. Place meat mixture on a large sheet of plastic wrap and pat into about about a 1/2 to 3/4-inch thick rectangle. Cut into 24 even pieces; roll pieces into balls and set aside.
  2. For Sweet and Sour Sauce: Prepare onion and bell pepper; set aside.
  3. Prepare pineapple chunks; set aside.
  4. In a small bowl combine the 3 tablespoons cornstarch with 1/2 cup water; set aside.
  5. In a 2-cup glass measure combine the pineapple juice, brown sugar, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce and beef base; set aside.
  6. To Cook: Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over high heat; add the onion and bell pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until slightly softened and "charred". Remove from skillet into a bowl; set aside.
  7. In the same skillet, brown the meatballs in remaining 1 tablespoon oil over medium high; cover and cook for about 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Drain excess grease.
  8. Return onion and bell pepper to skillet, including any accumulated juices.
  9. Add pineapple juice mixture to skillet and bring to a boil.
  10. Add pineapple chunks, when mixture returns to a boil, stir in the cornstarch mixture and cook, stirring constantly, just until thickened.
  11. Serve over hot cooked rice, or as desired.

Makes 6 servings.

*If using canned pineapple chunks, drain the juice to use as part of the required 1 1/4 cups pineapple juice.

Nutritional Information Per Serving (1/6 of recipe): 516.4 calories; 52% calories from fat; 30.0g total fat; 155.6mg cholesterol; 527.8mg sodium; 683.6mg potassium; 41.0g carbohydrates; 1.9g fiber; 30.0g sugar; 39.1g net carbs; 23.4g protein.

Recipe and photograph by Hope Cantil; Copyright © 1999; property of See Terms of Use.