Albondigas (Spanish meatballs in saffron sauce)

Albondigas (Spanish meatballs in saffron sauce)


5 people made this

About this recipe: Nice served as part of a tapas meal or a meal in its own right served with plain boiled rice. Little meatballs made with pork and veal (or beef) in a rich saffron sauce. Delicious and authentic - very similar to those found at Spanish tapas bars or lunch stops at Spanish food markets popular with locals.

Samantha's Supper Kent, England, UK

Serves: 4 

  • 400g minced pork
  • 400g minced veal (or beef)
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
  • 1 handful iceberg lettuce or little gem (white centre), finely chopped
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 slice bread, crust removed and lightly soaked in milk (squeeze out excess)
  • 1 slice smoked bacon, finely chopped
  • salt and pepper
  • plain flour for dusting
  • olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon plain flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 125ml chicken stock
  • 1 splash white wine or sherry
  • small pinch saffron

Prep:10min  ›  Cook:50min  ›  Ready in:1hr 

  1. In a large mixing bowl, add the minced meat, 1 clove of crushed garlic, 1 tablespoon parsley, lettuce, egg, bread and bacon and season with salt and pepper. Using your hands mix well, then divide mixture into small meatballs (ping pong ball size). Lightly dust in plain flour and shake off excess.
  2. Heat a fry pan with oil and brown the meatballs. You may have to do this in batches. Once meatballs are browned, in same fry pan add the onion and cook until translucent. Add 1 teaspoon of flour and paprika. Cook out the flour taste for about 1 minute. Add the chicken stock and wine or sherry. Return meatballs to the pan. Bring to the boil, then cover and simmer for 40 to 50 minutes.
  3. Whilst this is simmering, in a pestle and mortar mix up the remaining garlic, the remaining 1 tablespoon parsley, saffron and a pinch of salt. Just before serving, stir the saffron mixture into the sauce then serve.

Make ahead

The meatballs can be made up to 24 hours in advance. If doing this, when heating through, add the saffron mixture at the end.

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