Thursday, July 14, 2016

Recipes by Henry Fonda: Gazpacho; Swedish Meatballs

Henry Fonda's Gazpacho

4 medium-sized ripe tomatoes, peeled, chopped and seeded
1 large cucumber, peeled and diced
1 small clove garlic, crushed
1 small yellow onion, peeled and chopped
1/4 large green bell pepper, washed, deveined, cut in large dice
One 10 1/2-oz. can undiluted chicken broth
1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 1/2 tsps. minced fresh parsley
Salt and fresahly ground pepper to taste
Dash of cayenne (or ground cumin)

1. Put tomatoes, cucumber, garlic, onion and green pepper in blender; blend until almost smooth.

2. Add chicken broth, lemon juice, olive oil, parsley, salt and pepper to taste, and cayenne (or cumin). Blend again until smooth (about 2 minutes).

3. Place gazpacho in a closed container. Refrigerate several hours. Spoon into bowl to serve with small bits of crushed ice. Let guests help themselves to garnishing of fresh chopped vegetables (scallions, cucumbers, green pepper, and tomatoes) and garlic-fried croutons. (Fry bread in skillet rubbed lightly with a piece of cut garlic in top quality olive oil. Drain on towels before serving.) Serve as first course. Makes 3-4 servings.

Henry Fonda's Swedish Meatballs

1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/2 cup milk (or light cream)
1/2 cup finely minced yellow onions
3 tbsps. sweet butter
1 lb. lean ground raw beef
1 lb. ground raw veal
2 tsps. salt
1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1/2 tsp. cinnamon (or 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg)
2 eggs, lightly beaten

1. Soak bread crumbs in milk (or light cream) until milk is absorbed. Mix with a fork to form smooth mixture.

2. Saute onions slowly in about 1 tbsp. butter until onions are golden; remove onions to mixing bowl. Add beef, veal, salt, pepper, cinnamon (or nutmeg) and beaten eggs. Mix well with the fingers. Place mixing bowl, tightly covered, in refrigerator for several hours.

3. With fingers, form into 2-inch balls. Heat 2 tbsps. sweet butter in large skillet until it begins to sizzle. Brown the balls quickly over medium heat on all sides by shaking the pan. Transfer meatballs to an ovenproof baking dish. Add few tbsps. milk to skillet; deglaze skillet over medium heat; pour over meatballs in baking dish. Cook in preheated 350 degrees F. oven about 15 minutes (or until meatballs are well heated through). Serve with mashed potatoes and sauce made from juices in bottom of casserole. (Blend with a little heavy cream over direct flame until slightly reduced to have the consistency of a thin sauce. Correct seasonings.) For a green vegetable choose fresh (or frozen) cleaned chopped spinach cooked a few minutes in boiling salted water. Drain and squeeze a few drops of fresh lemon juice over spinach. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground pepper. Meatballs serve 4-6.

Thoughts: For optimal flavor, choose best grade of beef and veal, and have butcher grind meat three times (if possible). Allowing meat mixture to sit a few hours facilitates forming of balls. Seasonings can be varied with a dash of ground white pepper or a snipping of your favorite fresh herb (parsley, rosemary). For a richer sauce, dilute pan juices with few tbsps. sour cream, heat just to simmering point, but do not boil. 

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