There are many variations of this recipe out there with several optional ingredients. For me this is pure comfort food. As far back as I can remember my mom always made these for us and they are still a treat to this day. Many recipes call for the addition of brown sugar, more Worcestershire sauce etc. but I have never seen another recipe that includes my mom’s special touch. She always would shred fresh cabbage, a chopped green pepper, and a few stalks of celery to the pot. This puts this simple recipe over the top and I think anyone who tries it would agree that it makes this recipe better than all the others out there on the internet. (O.K. I am a bit biased here but try it and you will see it’s true). So here is what you will need and what you will need to do to take the journey to Porcupine Meatball greatness.
1 pound 80/20 ground beef
1/4 cup uncooked long grain rice
2 Tablespoons chopped parsley (optional)
1/4 cup fine chopped onion
1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt (then to taste)
1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
1 can condensed tomato soup (reserve 2 tablespoons for meat mixture)
1 15oz can stewed tomatoes including juices
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 to 2 cups fine chopped cabbage (I like 2 cups)
1 fine chopped green bell pepper
1 large or two small fine chopped celery stalks
Directions: Mix first seven ingredients in a large bowl along with two tablespoons of condensed tomato soup. Form into meatballs and add to a pot large enough to keep them in a single layer. Make sure you do not make the meatballs too large or the rice will not cook properly. Blend the remaining condensed soup with the stewed tomatoes (including juices) in a blender adding 1/4 cup of water if you feel its necessary. Add Worcestershire sauce. Pour into the pot with the meatballs. Top with the chopped cabbage, green pepper, and celery pushing down into the soup in between the meatballs. Bring to a short boil, place a lid on the pot and lower to a simmer for 20 to 30 minutes depending on the size of the meatballs. Turn once halfway through making sure the rice cooks evenly.