I love the idea of traditional Sunday dinners where the whole family sits down together for a big meal. Really, what could be more bonding than the whole family sitting around the table talking about their week while stuffing themselves with ridiculously high calorie foods? Okay, so they wouldn’t have to be high calorie, but let’s face it, no one is going to get excited about a Sunday night dinner tradition if all you ever eat is salad, but I digress. Anyway, I love cooking and I really love cooking for a crowd (which is why I always make Thanksgiving dinner), so I’m seriously thinking about making Sunday night dinners my thing. I gave it a test run last night because my aunt, Debby, and my cousin, Mat, are here for a visit so I had more guinea pigs for my test run.
Ever since the new Ikea catalog arrived last week I’ve had Swedish Meatballs on my mind. I love Ikea and a trip into the Swedish furniture superstore is never complete without a trip to their cafeteria for some meatballs. I haven’t had time to check out the new Ikea wares in person, but I did have time to make dinner. So with Ikea in mind, for my first foray into the Sunday night dinner, I thought I’d throw together a (very) large batch of Swedish meatballs. They’re not Ikea meatballs, but they were a hit (Just like Ikea’s beds were a hit when I took my boys into an Ikea a couple of years ago – as you can see in the below picture they really enjoyed the beds and attempted to take a nap in one of them).
Easy Gluten-Free Swedish Meatballs
(makes about 18 dozen meatballs)
For the Meatballs:
- 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 large yellow onion, minced
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tablespoon kosher salt (if using regular table salt, use only 2 teaspoons)
- ¾ teaspoon ground allspice
- ¾ teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1 ½ cups milk
- 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (make sure it’s gluten free)
- 3 cups gluten free breadcrumbs
- 4 pounds ground beef
- 6 large eggs
- Vegetable oil, for brushing
For the Gravy:
- 12 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 ½ cups gluten-free multi-purpose flour
- 8 cups low-sodium beef broth
- 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 ½ cups heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning (Vegeta is my favorite)
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
For the Meatballs:
- Make the meatballs:
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- In a large skillet set over medium heat, melt the butter.
- Add onion and garlic and sauté until soft (about 5 minutes).
- Add allspice, kosher salt and white pepper, stirring well.
- Slowly add in the milk and Worcestershire sauce and bring to a simmer (do not boil).
- Remove from heat and mix in the bread crumbs.
- Set aside and allow mixture to cool completely.
- In a separate, large bowl (very big… huge even), combine the ground beef and eggs.
- Once the breadcrumb mixture is cool, add it to the beef and eggs.
- Mix everything together (it’s best to use your hands) until the mixture appears uniform.
- Grease three baking sheets with vegetable oil (I like to line the sheets with foil and then grease the foil for easier cleanup).
- Roll the meat mixture into one inch balls and place on baking sheets (I was able to fit 70 per sheet).
- Bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
While the meatballs are baking, make the gravy
For the gravy:
- Melt the butter in a large French Oven set over medium heat.
- Add the flour, stirring constantly until smooth.
- Slowly whisk in the broth and Worcestershire sauce and bring to a simmer.
- Whisk in the heavy cream and poultry seasoning.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
Combine the meatballs and the gravy and serve over mashed potatoes with Lingonberry jam.