Porcupine Meatballswith potatoes / green beans
These "porcupine" meatballs get their name from the cooked rice that is folded into the mixture and pokes out a bit after cooking. Ricotta lends moisture to the meatballs.
Smarts: If you’d like tomato sauce for dipping Thursday’s calzones, double the recipe below and set half aside for Thurs.
- Shallots - 1 bulb, diced
- Garlic - 2 cloves, chopped
- Thyme leaves - 1 tsp, leaves torn
- Oil, olive - 1 Tbsp
- Paprika - 1/4 tsp
- Tomatoes, crushed (28 oz / 794 g) - 1 can
- Beef, ground - 1 lb
- Cheese, ricotta - 1/4 cup
- Panko breadcrumbs - 1/4 cup
- Eggs - 1
- Salt - 1/2 tsp
- Oregano, dried - 1/2 tsp
- Black pepper - 1/4 tsp
- Cooked rice (leftover from Monday) - 1 cup
- Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
- Green beans, fresh or frozen - 12 oz, chopped into 1” / 2.5 cm pieces
- Potatoes, baby red or yellow - 1 lb, halved
- Butter - 1 Tbsp
- Green beans / Shallots / Garlic / Thyme - Prep as directed. Store green beans and shallots in their own containers. Combine garlic and thyme in another container. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Make tomato sauce - (If prepping right before cooking, get water for potatoes / green beans boiling before continuing with prep.) Heat a saucepan with olive oil over medium heat. Add shallots and saute until soft, 2 to 3 minutes. Add garlic, thyme, and paprika and saute for 1 minute. Pour tomatoes over top and simmer for 5 minutes. Season with some salt and pepper. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Form meatballs - Combine beef, cheese, panko, eggs, salt, oregano, black pepper, and cooked rice. Form into 1” / 2.5 cm wide meatballs. You should have ~4 meatballs per serving. (Can be done 1 day ahead)
- Potatoes - Slice potatoes in half. Soak in water if not using right away.
- Place potatoes into a stock pot and cover with cold water and some salt. Cover and bring to a boil. Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.
- Add green beans and continue simmering potatoes and green beans together until potatoes can be easily pierced with a fork, 4 to 6 minutes more.
- Drain and let sit in a colander for ~5 minutes to let the steam escape (this creates creamier potatoes vs. liquidy potatoes).
- Meanwhile, heat a skillet with cooking oil over medium-high heat. Add meatballs and saute on all sides until golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes.
- Pour tomato sauce (reserve half if you doubled it for Thursday) around meatballs and cover. Cook, covered, until meatballs are cooked through, 12 to 15 minutes.
- Toss potatoes and green beans with butter. Season generously with some salt and pepper.
- Serve meatballs and sauce with potatoes and green beans on the side. Enjoy!
This meal has 35 reviews
Liked this a lot. I didn’t think the meatballs and sauce would fit in my skillet, so I made the sauce in my Dutch oven and transferred the meatballs to the sauce after browning them. I like my meatballs extra brown; I think this helped keep them together in the sauce. I did have a lot of loose (burnt) rice in the skillet, but his wasn’t a big deal since I wasn’t adding the sauce to that pan. To simplify things, I skipped the potatoes and steamed green beans in the microwave. Still very satisfying.
Fine but not fantastic. Tried to make it a bean sauce instead of tomato based and it was a bit dry. Added some potatoes into the cauliflower/bean mix because my family loves them...
This is one of those meals that I thought was good the first time around but thought the leftovers were great. I think the longer the meatballs sit in the sauce, the better they are. I really like the side too. It's simple but great.
I really liked this, and I was able to prep it during the day so it came together easily. Plus, my 1 year old ate all of it, even the green beans!
The meatballs did come apart during the process. Maybe adding more panko next time to firm them up a little more. Otherwise great dish!
We really enjoyed this dish! We eat keto, so I left out the rice and potatoes, and swapped the breadcrumbs for crushed pork rinds. I wish I had doubled the sauce because it was delicious!