Basil Meatballs with Crunchy Veggie Slaw

adapted from Bon Appetit Magazine (I think)

Serves 4 (large sandwiches)

Prep and cook time: 15-20 minutes for meat; 10 minutes for slaw, but it should rest an hour

Cost: $3.80 (not including buns here)

(hamburger: 3.00, carrots: .40, celery: .30, other stuff: .10)

1 lb hamburger or ground pork

1/4 C fresh basil, chopped

4 cloves garlic, chopped

3 green onions, chopped

1 Tbsp fish sauce

1 Tbsp hot chili sauce

1 Tbsp sugar

2 tsp cornstarch

1 tsp black pepper

1 tsp chunky salt (or 1/2 tsp table salt)


2 C carrots, grated

1-2 C celery, finely chopped (or grated daikon radish or cabbage or probably any other crunchy vegetable)

1/4 C rice vinegar (didn't have so used white wine vinegar)

1/4 C sugar

1 tsp chunky salt (or 1/2 tsp table salt)

1 Tbsp Asian sesame oil

16 large cilantro sprigs (didn't have, so didn't use, but think it would have been so awesome)

Note: If you've got pesto, that can be substituted for the basil and garlic--use about 1/4 C pesto)

To make slaw:

Grate carrots and chop celery.

Mix together with vinegar, sugar, salt, and sesame oil. Let sit for 1 hour (I let mine sit covered at room temperature). You might be tempted to skip this resting period, but I have to say that I tasted mine right after I made it and it was so so much better an hour later. 

To make meatballs:

Combine hamburger with everything else. Mash it together and roll it into meatballs that are 1-2 inches across (remember they'll shrink). Cook in skillet until no longer pink in center. 

Serve on buns of some sort with the slaw or whatever other toppings make you and yourn happiest. 

A Word on Waste

If you end up with leftover slaw, save it and the next day add some granny smith apples (or any crisp apple) and/or raisins to make a salad out of it. 

Posted by The Tasty Cheapskate