Asian Pork Meatballs

On February 5th, SAGE served a Lunar New Year menu for dinner at Garrison Forest.  I worked with two of our Asian International boarder students who were very helpful in menu planning!  After talking about it with them, we decided on Asian Pork Meatballs, Beef Bulgogi, Asian Stir-Fry, Vegetable Lo Mein, and Steamed Cabbage.  And that was just for the hot line!  We also did a Rice Bowl Station with house-made Kimchi, seaweed salad, and lots of toppings, along with a Hot Tea Station. For dessert:  Homemade Sticky Rice with Mango and Coconut Milk, and Moon Cakes!  A lot of time and effort was put in to transforming the dining hall and making this Lunar New Year dinner as authentic as possible.  The authenticity was really important to me, therefore, instead of purchasing the bulgogi sauce at the Asian market, as suggested by one of the students, I made it myself!  I offered her a taste the night before, and she said her and all of her friends enjoyed it!  I was so happy. (Recipe to follow later!)  Below are a few pictures of the event, as well as the recipe for the Asian Pork Meatballs I made.  Enjoy!

 My attempt at drawing a horse!

 Dessert station of Sticky Rice with Mango and Coconut Milk and Moon Cakes!

Asian Rice Bowl Station

What You'll Need (scaled from 200+ meatballs):
  • 5 lb. ground pork
  • 1/3 cup scallions
  • 1 tbsp. fresh ginger, finely grated
  • 2 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp. sesame oil
  • 3 tbsp. rice wine vinegar
  • 3 tbsp. minced garlic
  • Zest of (1) large orange
  • 3 tsp. toasted sesame seeds, divided

1.  In a large mixing bowl, thoroughly mix all ingredients with your hands, leaving 1 tsp. of sesame seeds for sprinkling.  Do not overmix, but make sure all the ingredients are incorporated.  Overmixing leads to tough and dense balls.  No one likes dense balls.  This recipe will make approximately (50) 1.5-oz. meatballs or (40) 2-oz. meatballs.  Get rolling!

2.  After you have rolled all of your meatballs, line them on a wire rack on a foil or parchment paper-lined baking sheet.  Bake in a 400-degree oven for about 15-20 minutes, until the internal temperature of the meatballs reaches 160 degrees.  Sprinkle with 1 tsp. of sesame seeds.

As a general rule of thumb I like to follow, meatballs of any kind should be seared in a skillet.  It makes the outside nice and crisp, while the inside stays nice and juicy and tender.  Considering this recipe originally made over 200 meatballs, I skipped the searing and went straight for the oven.  If you like a fried meatball instead, by all means, fry them!

 We served them over halved baby bok choy.

 Great with Sriracha!!


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