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Swedish Cocktail Meatballs

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Serves: 4-6
50g / 2 oz butter
1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
50g / 2 oz fresh white breadcrumbs
1 medium egg, beaten
125ml / 4 fl oz double cream
salt and freshly ground black pepper
350g / 12 oz fresh lean beef mince
125g / 4 oz fresh pork mince
3-4 tbsp freshly chopped dill
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1 tbsp vegetable oil
125ml / 4 fl oz beef stock
cream cheese and chive or cranberry sauce, to serve

Heat half the butter in a large wok, add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, for 4-6 minutes, or until softened and beginning to colour. Transfer to a bowl and leave to cool. Wipe out the wok with absorbent kitchen paper.

Add the breadcrumbs and beaten egg with 1-2 tablespoons of cream to the softened onion. Season to taste with salt and pepper and stir until well blended. Using your fingertips crumble the beef and pork mince into the bowl. Add half the dill, the allspice and, using your hands, mix together until well blended. With dampened hands, shape the mixture into 2.5cm / 1 inch balls.

Melt the remaining butter in the wok and add the vegetable oil, swirling it to coat the side of the wok. Working in batches, add about one quarter to one third of the meatballs in a single layer and cook for 5 minutes, swirling and turning until golden and cooked. Transfer to a plate and continue with the remaining meatballs, transferring them to the plate as they are cooked.

Pour off the fat in the wok. Add the beef stock and bring to the boil, then boil until reduced by half, stirring and scraping up any browned bits from the bottom. Add the remaining cream and continue to simmer until slightly thickened and reduced. Stir in the remaining dill and season if necessary. Add the meatballs and simmer for 2-3 minutes, or until heated right through. Serve with cocktail sticks, with the sauce in a separate bowl for dipping.

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