Even the most frustrated man will appreciate these blue balls.
Silly jokes aside, these blue cheese meatballs are, what I like to call, amaze-balls. This is one of those pretty quick recipes that you can bring to a party and everyone will rave about it. Except, of course, those vehemently opposed to blue cheese. I’m not a huge blue cheese person myself, but if it’s mixed with something (especially wine) I can definitely be a blue cheese person.
The longest part of the recipe is caramelizing the onions, then waiting for them to cool off just enough to add to the meat and blue cheese mixture. Otherwise, it’s one of those really simple recipes that’s HUGE in flavor and effect. Likely because everything about it is so rich and decadent. If you’re really in a pinch for time, you can quick sauté up some red onion or shallot instead. The caramelized onions taste better, though.
The cabernet sauce came about because I had one of those rare moments in my house where a half of a bottle of wine sat around all weekend. If it goes more than a couple days, I tend to go ahead and cook with it. It’s nice, once in a while, to follow Julia Child’s rule of only cooking with wine you’d drink. The recipe calls for 2 cups, which is a solid half bottle. If you have to open a bottle for this, well what do you do with that other half? Bottoms up. Then you can also follow my rule of cooking with wine: I always cook with wine. Sometimes I even add it to the food.
As far as what kind of blue cheese to use, this is all up to you and your budget. I used a Roquefort, not for any particular reason except that it was the stinkiest one. Yes, I put all the blue cheeses up to my face in the cheese aisle at Trader Joe’s to smell them. With an employee standing right there, no less. He didn’t say anything. If you live by a Trader Joe’s, I’d go there. My stinky cheese was under $4, and I didn’t even need the whole block of it.
Blue Cheese Meatballs with Cabernet Sauce
For the blue balls
- 1 onion (diced)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil or butter
- 1lb ground venison
- 1lb ground beef or lamb
- 1 cup blue cheese (crumbled, plus more for garnish)
For the sauce
- 2 cups cabernet sauvignon (about half a bottle)
- 2 tablespoons butter (or to taste)
|For the blue balls|
|Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the diced onions, salt to taste, and cover and cook until caramelized, about 20 minutes. Stir occasionally to keep from burning. Set aside and let cool slightly.|
|Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Combine the meats and the crumbled blue cheese with the onions and mix well. Form into balls and put into a mini muffin tin or on a cookie sheet. Bake at 400 until cooked through and the cheese is just starting to melt, about 10-12 minutes.|
|For the sauce|
|While the meatballs are baking, bring the wine to a boil in the same pan you caramelized the onions in and then simmer until the liquid has reduced enough to stick to the back of a spoon. (Should take about 10-ish minutes.) Whisk in the butter.|
|Serve the meatballs warm with the sauce drizzled over them.|