Mexican Meatballs in Chipotle Chili Sauce

Mexican Meatballs in Chipotle Chili Sauce


1 pound ground beef chuck
1 pound ground pork
1/2 cup minced flat leaf parsley
1 large white onion, grated
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, or to taste
3 eggs, beaten
3 slices coarse white bread, crust removed and soaked in 1/3 cup milk
Salt and freshiy ground pepper, to taste


6 large ripe tomatoes, or 1 can (28 ounces) fire-roasted whole tomatoes, drained
4 cloves garlic, peeled
1 medium onion, peeled, quartered
2 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 to 3 canned chipotle chilies in adobo (to taste)
2 to 3—inch piece Mexican cinnamon bark, or 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons coarse (kosher) salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
1/2 cup olive, or vegetable, oil
1 sprig mint, or pinch ground dried mint

For the meatballs. combine the meatball ingredients in a large bowl; mix with
your hands. Refrigerate, covered, for one hour.

Meanwhile, for the sauce, if using fresh tomatoes, place on a cooking sheet
and broil, turning once or twice until the skins blister and blacken, about
10 minutes. Peel the skin off tomatoes and place the peeled (or canned
tomatoes) into a blender or food processor. Put the garlic and onion into a
hot, dry skillet and cook, turning occasionally, over medium heat, until the
garlic is lightly browned and the onion is lightly scorched.
Add to the blender along with 1/2 cup of the broth, chipotles to taste (start
with 1), cinnamon, salt and pepper. Blend until smooth. Taste, and add more
chipotles it desired.

Heat oil in a large, heavy, and deep skillet over medium heat until quite hot
but not smoking. Add the tomato ixture and “fry” until it thickens (it will
splatter), about 10 minutes. Stir in the remaining 2 cups broth and heat
to a boil. Stir in mint. Taste again, adjust salt and pepper, and add some
adobo from the canned chilies if not
spicy enough.

Shape the meat mixture into meatballs (about 1 inch diameter); the mixture
should make 60 meatballs. Add the meatballs to the sauce. Shake the pan
once or twice in the first five minutes of cooking to prevent sticking.
Simmer slowly until the meatballs are done, about 30 minutes.

Makes 8 servings.