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QUEBEC PORK MEATBALLS

Are you Hosting this Holiday Season? Be ready for those guests with these amazing Quebec Pork Meatballs. Easily make a batch ahead of time and all you will have to do is plate, add a dipping sauce and serve with tooth picks. I like this recipe because you have a bit of freedom with it. You have a bit of wiggle room with the spices in this recipe. If you already have a meatball mixture that your family loves use that as your seasoning. Do a batch spicy and a batch mild. Have fun with it but don't fix what isn't broken ;)

Try it out and comment your meatball canning experiences below!

Yield: Makes about 6 x 500 ml or 3 x 1 L

Prep Time: 60 minutes

Processing Time: 90 Minutes

Difficulty: Expert

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 kg (4.4 lb) lean ground pork
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed, optional
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) dried parsley
  • 2 tsp (10 ml) salt
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) freshly ground pepper
  • Spice Mixture
  • 2 tsp (10 ml) dry mustard
  • 1 1/4 tsp (6 ml) ground cloves
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) ground mace, optional
  • Vegetable oil
  • 3 cups (750 ml) liquid – broth, water or up to 1 cup (250 ml) red wine plus broth or water

DIRECTIONS:

• Place 6 clean 500 ml or 3 clean 1 L mason jars on a rack in a boiling water canner; cover jars with water and heat to a simmer (180°F/82°C). Set screw bands aside. Heat SNAP LID® sealing discs in hot water, not boiling (180°F/82°C). Keep jars and sealing discs hot until ready to use.

• Combine ground pork with onions, garlic, if using, parsley, salt, pepper and spice mixture. (If desired, substitute your own favourite blend of spices. Avoid sage as it can become bitter during storage.) Mix well. Form meat mixture into 1-inch (2.5 cm) meatballs using about 1 tablespoon (15 ml) for each. Working in batches, heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat; brown meatballs on all surfaces. Remove browned meatballs to another container while browning remainder.

• When meatballs are browned, slowly add liquid to skillet scraping up brown bits from pan; bring to a boil. Using slotted spoon, remove any burned or large pieces. Pack meatballs into hot jars filling to within 1 1/4 inch (3 cm) of top rim. Equally divide hot liquid among jars; add boiling water filling each jar to within 1 inch (2.5 cm) of to rim (headspace).

• Using nonmetallic utensil, remove air bubbles. Wipe jar rim removing any stickiness. Centre hot sealing disc on clean jar rim. Screw band down until resistance is met, then increase to fingertip tight. Return filled jar to rack in canner. Repeat for remaining mixture. If stacking jars, place a second rack between layers of jars.

• When pressure canner is full, adjust water to level as directed by canner manufacturer. Lock canner lid in place and follow manufacturer’s heating instructions. Vent canner–allow steam to escape steadily–for 10 minutes; close vent.

• When canner reaches the pressure appropriate for your altitude* and type of pressure canner, begin counting processing time. Process – heat filled jars – 500 ml jars – 75 minutes; 1 L jars – 90 minutes at 10 lb (69 kPa) pressure in a weighted gauge pressure canner.

• NOTE: processing times indicated are for a weighted gauge pressure canner used at altitudes up to 1,000 ft (305 m). When using a dial gauge pressure canner or canning at higher elevations, adjust pressure according to chart.

• When processing time is complete turn off heat. Allow canner to stand undisturbed until pressure drops to zero. Wait 2 minutes, and then remove cover, tilting it away from your face. Remove jars without tilting. Cool upright, undisturbed 24 hours; DO NOT RETIGHTEN screw bands. After cooling check jar seals. Sealed discs curve downward. Remove screw bands; wipe and dry bands and jars. Store screw bands separately or replace loosely on jars, as desired. Label and store in a cool, dark place.

• To serve: In saucepan, brown flour in a small amount of fat; stir in liquid from meatballs. Cook and stir until thickened. Add meatballs and heat through.

Happy Canning!