Spicy Meatballs

Prep Time: 1 Hour
Yields: 3 Dozen

Most Cajuns love hot and spicy food. In the fall of the year, Tabasco, cayenne and jalapeño peppers can be seen growing in many bayou gardens. This recipe most likely evolved when a Cajun family threw slices of these hot peppers into a pot of meatballs being prepared for a holiday treat or a wedding.

Ingredients for Meatballs:

  • ½ pound ground beef
  • ½ pound ground pork
  • ¼ cup minced onions
  • ¼ cup minced celery
  • ¼ cup minced red bell peppers
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 2 eggs
  • salt and cracked black pepper to taste
  • pinch of thyme
  • pinch of basil
  • Louisiana hot sauce to taste
  • ¾ cup Italian bread crumbs

In a large mixing bowl, combine meats, onions, celery, bell peppers, garlic and eggs. Using your hands, blend all ingredients well. Season to taste using salt, pepper, thyme, basil and hot sauce. Continue to mix until seasonings are well blended. Mix in bread crumbs. Shape mixture into 1-inch meatballs.

Ingredients for Sauce:

  • ¼ cup butter
  • ½ cup ketchup
  • ½ cup barbecue sauce
  • 1 tbsp minced jalapeño, Tabasco or cayenne peppers
  • 2 tbsps brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp Louisiana cane syrup
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp Creole mustard
  • dash of Worcestershire sauce
  • salt to taste
  • Louisiana hot sauce to taste
  • ¼ cup chopped parsley

In a 14-inch sauté pan, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add meatballs and brown on all sides. Remove meatballs from pan and set aside. In the same pan, whisk together ketchup, barbecue sauce, jalapeños, brown sugar, cane syrup and vinegar. Add mustard, Worcestershire, salt and hot sauce. Continue to whisk until ingredients begin to simmer. Place cooked meatballs into sauce, reduce heat to simmer and cook 15–20 minutes. Sprinkle in fresh parsley. Transfer meatballs and sauce to a chafing dish and serve hot.


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