This meatballs in molasses BBQ sauce recipe is scrump-TIOUS, and what I really like about it (other than the taste) is the fact it’s from a new cookbook that’s unlike anything else I have on my shelf.
Thank you to Clarkson Potter for providing me with a review copy.
It’s called Jubilee: Recipes From Two Centuries of African American Cooking by Toni Tipton-Martin and it’s a celebration of the African American food story, but it’s not a soul food cookbook. It’s so much more.
It’s a compilation of stories and more than 100 recipes with techniques, ingredients and dishes that show the roots of African American cooking. There are recipes from enslaved chefs to middle-and upper-class writers and entrepreneurs for a culturally diverse jubilee of flavor.
Meatballs in Molasses BBQ Sauce
I chose the meatballs recipe because I didn’t realize meatballs had ties to African American cooking. In fact, they’re related to “forced steak”, beef cakes, Creole pork balls and North African kofta.
There are stories and little tidbits of history and information posted in the recipe intros and margins, so even when you’re not cooking, it’s a really interesting read!
I started by making the molasses BBQ sauce on the stove by mixing all these wonderful ingredients together.
While it simmered away, I savored the aroma and got started on making the meatballs.
I mixed together pork, ground beef, panko, egg and spices in a bowl.
Then I gently rolled them into tablespoon-sized meatballs and baked them in the oven.
Finally, I tossed them in a mixture of honey and molasses barbecue sauce and baked them for 10 more minutes to set the glaze.
Then I poured the remaining molasses barbecue sauce over the meatballs in a serving dish and dinner was ready!
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 pound ground pork
- 1 cup minced onion
- 2 teaspoon minced garlic (about 2 cloves)
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 2/3 cup panko crumbs
- 2 large eggs beaten
- 2 cup molasses barbecue sauce
- 2 tablespoon honey
Molasses Barbecue Sauce
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 2 tablespoons minced onion
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 1/3 cups ketchup
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons yellow mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper`
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
Molasses Barbecue Sauce
In a saucepan, heat the butter until sizzling. Add the garlic and onion and cook over medium-low heat until tender, about 2 minutes.
Stir in remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat to a gentle simmer. Cover and cook for 20 minutes to allow flavors to mingle.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a large bowl, thoroughly combine the beef, pork, onion, garlic, salt, paprika, pepper, panko and egg. Quickly pan-cook or microwave a small bit of the mixture to taste for seasoning and add salt as desired.
Roll the mixture into tablespoon-sized balls and place on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until cooked through, about 15 minutes. Drain off liquid.
To serve immediately: increase the oven temperature to 375 degrees. Toss the meatballs with honey and 1 cup of barbecue sauce. Bake for 10 minutes more until barbecue sauce glaze is set. Serve hot.
To serve on a buffet: Place the partially cooked balls in a slow cooker with the honey and and enough barbecue sauce to partially cover the meatballs. Simmer on low for up to 3 hours, covered, adding barbecue sauce and honey as needed to keep meatballs moist.
Pin this meatballs recipe to Pinterest!
Pick up a copy of Jubilee: Recipes From Two Centuries of African American Cooking for yourself or for holiday gift-giving.
Love meatballs? Check out this turkey, ham and swiss meatballs recipe too.