How To Make Meatball Subs? The main ingredient is pork belly, to accompany that, you will need Chinese napa cabbage, baby bak choi, bamboo shoot, and chicken broth.
For condiments, you will need shaoxin wine, white pepper, spring onion, sugar, ginger, egg white, and some salt.
First step, we will make our chicken broth.
You can buy packaged broth or reduced broth, but do not use pure water.
Cut chicken into pieces, give it a blanch and cook in cold water, and then bring it to a boil.
Add in two pieces of ginger, braise over low heat for 2 hours, and strain before you use.
Next up, sides. Slice bamboo shoot first.
And then cut them into thin stripes.
And chop into fine pieces.
Separate the stem part of napa cabbages from the leaves and cut in the middle.
Grate spring onion and ginger in to fine mixture.
Or you can just chop them up.
Add in about 100ml of water, and set aside.
Crack an egg. Separate egg yolk and egg white.
Now, cut the meat.
Before you cut, freeze the meat in the fridge for 3-4 hours until it sets and becomes a little hard, so that it’s easier to work with a knife.
You’d better use a sharp blade here, and cut the meat into very thin slices first.
And then, cut into thin stripes. To make a meatball, do not use very lean meat, the proportion of fat and lean part should be 4:6, or better half and half.
Lean meat may not be able to give a light and pillowy texture as desired.
Finally, dice the meat, and they should be as the same size of fruit seeds.
Slicing meat requires patience, and it is also a good way to test the sharpness of your blade.
Before you start to slice meat, sharpen your blade first.
Make sure you freeze the meat beforehand, because this makes it a lot easier when it comes to slicing meat.
Dice the meat, and chop them like this.
The meat in a meatball is very different from that as a pork filling, because you actually cut the meat into a meatball, not chop them up. Chopping is only for an extra springiness in the texture here.
And cutting and slicing gives the main texture in a meatball.
Next, season the meatball.
Add in about 1/2 tsp. of salt.
And a little sugar to compliment the savory flavor.
Add in shaoxing wine.
Potato starch, or corn starch.
Toss with your hand to hep the mixture absorb flavor.
Add in diced bamboo shoot.
You can substitute bamboo shoot with water chestnut.
Personally I prefer bamboo shoot. Mix well and you will see the mixture is becoming sticky.
Now slowly add in ginger and spring onion water into the mixture.
Stir from the same direction every time you add in water.
Make sure meat mixture absorb all the water.
Adding water gives a tender and soft texture in the meatball.
Line the bottom of a stew pot with napa cabbage stems.
Get a portion of meat mixture.
Toss between your hands like this to knock out air in it, so that you will have a firm texture in the meatball.
Follow this process and then shape it into a large meatball, and place it on the napa cabbage stem.
Repeat the same process and shape all the meat mixture into lion’s heads meatballs. My recipe can make 5 servings.
Arrange meatballs in the pot, and top them with napa cabbage leaves. Be very gentle with your meatballs, and do not break them.
Transfer the stew pot on a stove.
Bring the chicken broth to a boil first.
And then, slowly and gently pour chicken broth into the stew pot. Do not pour it over the meatballs to keep them in shape.
Add in two pieces of ginger.
Bring it to a boil. When it’s almost there, turn down the heat to low, and braise for 2 hours.
Wait patiently, and then, open the lid.
Get rid of the foam to keep a clear broth.
Season with some salt.
Add in baby bak choi.
Cook for another minute, and it’s ready to serve.
Well, this is my dinner for tonight.
A plain braised meatball is a very classic Huaiyang cuisine, and it’s complicated and time consuming.
From prep stage to cooking stage, this dish does require a lot of time and technique.
But the final dish worth everything. You will have a very different texture than any other meatballs.
They are very light and tender. You can easily break it with a spoon.
It optimizes the flavor and texture of pork.
As for the broth, it’s very clear but full of flavors.
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