I love recipes like these Pork Meatballs with Ginger and Patis that use ingredients I already have in my Filipino pantry. I always have ground pork ready in my freezer for classic Philippine recipes like embutido, siomai, bola-bola and Lumpia Shanghai. Patis (fish sauce) is always on my kitchen shelf. And fresh ginger is a mainstay in my American kitchen.
The meatballs seasoned with patis (fish sauce) with hints of the sharp, warm ginger flavors threw around mildly spicy aromas as they sizzled in the skillet. It was delightful that the recipe used crushed Ritz crackers as a binding ingredient. These savory meatballs are a filling main dish. It’s the kind of easy recipe where you mix, shape, and cook.
August will end soon. Preoccupation with the pandemic caught me off guard and I failed to make many of the summer recipes I often do. The weather has been erratic, too, so our outdoor grilling has not been as often. But I am hopeful there will be many more summers to come which we intend to enjoy.
September is a few days away. I look forward to the promise of better times ahead. There is so much heartbreaking news out there, I admit it’s been hard to focus. I pray for California residents who have to flee from the wild fires. We cannot save the world. But we can do our part, in our own way. Be kind. Be patient. Be generous. Be mindful of those who have to go out in the world physically to work, so that we can live comfortably while quarantined at home. And try these pork meatballs. It’s a different dish that has all the familiar flavors which remind you of warmth and goodness.
Pork Meatballs with Ginger and Patis
- large skillet or wok
For the pork meatballs:
- 1 pound lean ground pork
- 1 Tablespoon minced fresh ginger, from a knob of a 1-inch piece, peeled, chopped fine and mince.
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 whole medium-sized onion, chopped fine
- 1 Tablespoon patis (fish sauce)
- 1 whole large egg
- 1/2 cup crushed Ritz crackers (regular variety) about 10 to 12 whole crackers
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 4 Tablespoons vegetable oil
- 500 grams snow peas, edges trimmed
- 1 Tablespoon thick soy sauce
- steamed rice
- fresh lemon slices for garnish
- 2 stalks scallions, chopped, for garnish
To cook the pork meatballs:
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the ground pork with the rest of the ingredients, except for the vegetable oil. Mix well.Shape the pork mixture into meatballs, 1-inch in diameter. Place the meatballs on a tray or large plate. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour to firm up before cooking.
- In a large skillet or wok, over medium-high heat, add the oil. When oil is hot enough after 1 to 2 minutes, drop the meatballs into the skillet. Pan fry the meatballs for about 10 to 12 minutes or till completely cooked.Using a turner or slotted spoon, turn the meatballs around once for even cooking.When meatballs are cooked, drain on paper towels or parchment paper to remove excess grease.
To cook the vegetables:
- In a medium-sized stockpot filled with boiling water, blanch the snap peas for 1 to 2 minutes.Remove the snow peas from the boiling water. Soak them in an ice bath (bowl filled with iced water) for 5 minutes. Drain liquid. Transfer snow peas to a bowl.Pour the thick soy sauce over the vegetables. Blend well till all the snow peas are coated with the soy sauce.
To plate the dish:
- On a serving platter, lay the snow peas at the bottom in a single layer. Place the cooked pork meatballs over the snow peas.Garnish with chopped scallions and sliced lemons for sprinkling on the meatballs. Serve warm with rice.
Notes on Nutrition: The nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.
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