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Beef, Pork and Pine Nut Meatballs (Albondigas Camagüey)

Beef, Pork and Pine Nut Meatballs (Albondigas Camagüey) Recipe

Guava glazed meatballs served in a creamy mushroom stew.

 

 

Chef Guillermo Pernot joined Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar in fall 2006 as Chef-Partner. His critically acclaimed restaurant ¡Pasión! earned an impressive list of accolades, including awards from Gourmet, Philadelphia magazine and Fodor’s.  Chef Pernot was named Esquire’s “Chef of the Year."


Ingredients
For the Guava BBQ Sauce
4
cans
Guava paste (21-ounce cans)
1
quart
hot water
1
pint
hot sauce
4
gallon
BBQ sauce
For the Mushroom Water and Meatball Stew
3
tablespoons
vegetable oil
12
tablespoons
red wine vinegar
6
tablespoons
soy sauce
1 1/2
tablespoons
granulated sugar
1
tablespoon
kosher salt
3/4
ounce
fresh ginger, very finely julienned
2
tablespoons
sesame oil
15
ounces
royal trumpet mushrooms, sliced
8
ounces
shiitake mushrooms (B size)
15
ounces
Maitake mushrooms, quartered
12
ounces
oyster mushrooms
18
ounces
medium “silver dollar” mushrooms, sliced
17.5
rehydrated mushrooms, soaked overnight
8
cups
roasted pork stock
1
cup
mushroom “water”
2
tablespoons
cornstarch
1 1/2
tablespoons
ground white pepper
For the Camaguey Breadcrumbs
1
loaf Cuban bread, crust removed and cubed
2
tablespoons
unsalted butter
1
teaspoon
kosher salt
3
tablespoons
fresh cilantro, chopped
3
tablespoons
scallions, sliced
For the Meatball Glaze
1
quart
sweet chili sauce
1
quart
mushroom “water”
1
cup
hot sauce
1
cup
sesame oil
1
can
chipotle chilies (7-ounces can)
1
quart
soy sauce
32
ounces
guava BBQ sauce
For the Meatballs
2
pounds
ground beef
2
pounds
ground pork
4
slices
bacon, grinded
4
teaspoons
garlic, minced
4
tablespoons
Italian parsley, minced
2 3/4
ounces
romaine hears, white part only, minced
4
eggs, beaten
4
ounces
Cuban bread, crust removed and soaked in milk
4
ounces
milk
6
teaspoons
kosher salt
1
tablespoon
ground black pepper
3
ounces
pine nuts, chopped
Directions
To make guava BBQ: Combine the water and the guava paste in a stockpot.
Melt over high heat.
Add the hot sauce and BBQ sauce.
Stir to combine.
Cool and refrigerate.
To prepare mushrooms: The mushroom water comes from soaking the dried mushrooms overnight. Make sure to save this water as you will also need some for the Meatball Glaze. Make sure that the water is strained through a chinoise to get out the dirt.
Place 1 tablespoon of oil into a rondeau and wait until it begins to smoke, then add the fresh mushrooms one type at a time.
First add the royal trumpet and allow them to caramelize; minimize stirring to avoid breaking. Once caramelized, place on a sheet pan.
Add more oil and proceed with adding each kind of mushroom (shitake, maitake, oyster, button) in the pan the same way.
Once all the mushrooms are done, place all of them back in the rondeau, add the soaked dried mushrooms, ginger, red vinegar, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, sugar and salt (these should be mixed together beforehand).
Let the liquid reduce slightly.
Add the pork stock and white pepper then reduce over high heat.
Add the sesame oil and make a slurry with the mushroom water and cornstarch.
Thicken with the slurry, bring to a simmer, then remove from heat and cool.
To prepare breadcrumbs: Remove the crust from the bread and cube into 1/3 -inch cubes.
In a sauté pan, melt the butter and toss with the bread cubes.
Return to a large sauté pan and brown lightly over low heat until the bread is crispy.
Cool.
Crush the cubes until they become coarse bread crumbs.
Season with salt and toss with the sliced scallions and cilantro.
To prepare meatball stew: In a bowl, mix together the beef, pork, bacon, garlic, parsley, lettuce, eggs, bread, salt, pepper and pine nuts.
Form into 1.5 once balls.
Place a single layer of balls into a fryer basket and fry for one minute until golden brown.
To prepare meatballs: Place the pre-fried meatballs in a steamer for 6 minutes, uncovered.
Once the meatballs are done in the steamer, toss them in a hot sauté pan with pre-heated glaze to coat.
Place into a hot cazuelita (small, terra cotta dish) and top with the bread crumb, slightly crushed.
Serve.

The base number of servings for this recipe is 54
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