Recipes | Bianca's bitterballen


Bianca's bitterballen

If you want to serve something a little different at your Christmas party try these delicious crisp little Dutch meatballs from our guest contributor Bianca Ford of Sip with Supper (@sipwithsupper on Twitter).

Serves 12-14


1kg stewing beef
1 onion
½ teaspoon black peppercorns
A bay leaf
2 cloves
A few sprigs of thyme
100g butter
120g flour
2 shallots, finely chopped
500ml milk
5 sheets of gelatine or enough to set 500ml of liquid (follow the pack instructions)
A small handful of flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper to taste
Plenty of white breadcrumbs, a beaten egg and plain flour for coating


Put the beef in a large pan, cover with water and bring to simmering point. Add the onions, peppercorns, bay leaf, cloves and thyme. Leave to simmer for 2-3 hours or until the meat is tender.

Strain the meat and onions, reserving 500ml of the cooking liquid. When cooled, put the onions to one side and shred the meat with a couple of forks.

In a saucepan, mix the flour and butter together over a medium heat then add the onions. Gradually add the milk and the meat cooking liquid then leave the sauce to simmer for half an hour, stirring regularly. Take off the heat

Dissolve the gelatine according to the packet instructions and add it to the hot sauce, stirring continuously. Add the beef, parsley, Dijon mustard and salt and pepper to taste. Allow to cool completely then refrigerate for at least an hour.

Remove the mixture from the fridge and roll into balls – you should be able to make around 50. Put the flour, beaten egg and breadcrumbs onto three separate plates and then roll the balls in each of these in turn, finishing with the breadcrumbs. Deep fry the balls, about 10 at a time, at 180° C until golden brown. Drain on kitchen towel and serve hot with mustard.

See Jackie and Bianca's wine recommendations here.

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