Great meatballs of fire
And you thought you had balls?
Meatballs with cherries? Seriously? When we found out this was a Flemish classic the Smokey kitchen had a lot of questioning faces. Traditionally it’s made with ‘zure krieken’, sour cherries that pair better with savory dishes. Those are kind of hard to get though, so we gave ourselves the culinary liberty of putting a serious twist on this dish. This semi-sweet BBQ version is guaranteed to pleasantly surprise you.
- ½ lbs (250g) minced beef
- ½ lbs (250g) minced pork
- 2⅔ oz (75g) panko bread crumbs
- 2 eggs
- about 1 oz robust BBQ sauce, like Smokey’s Bold & Beefy
- 12 rashers of bacon
- ½ an onion, diced
- 3 sprigs of thyme, leaves finely chopped
- 1 sprig rosemary, leaves finely chopped
- 1 jar of cherries with juice (about 21 oz, 10½ oz drained net weight)
- 10 fl oz (300ml) BBQ sauce, like Smokey’s Finest
- 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
- BBQ with cover for indirect grilling
- handful of wood chips for smoking, soaked in water
- Core thermometer
How to make:
Duration: prep 30 minutes
Cooking about: 1 hour and 15 minutes
To make the meatballs, mix together all ingredients except for the bacon until you have a coherent whole. Divide into 4 portions and roll into balls. Wrap each ball with 3 rashers of bacon and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
Prepare a BBQ for indirect grilling and heat to 160°C (320 °F).
Place the soaked wood chips amidst the hot coals and your meatballs on the grill grate. Cover and smoke for about an hour and 15 minutes, until the core temperature reads 70 °C (158 °F).
Meanwhile, cook the onion, thyme, and rosemary with the cherry juice and boil until the liquid has almost completely evaporated. Add the BBQ sauce and cherries and season with the vinegar. Serve the meatballs with the sauce.