Friday, August 31, 2018

the new griddle does its thing

I finally put my new griddle to the test. Its measurements made it an exact fit for my two burners, but as you might expect, the burners provided uneven heating, so the griddle—which isn't cast iron*—had hot spots and cooler spots. Not a big problem; I adjusted and adapted.

What you see are some huge-ass meatballs made from a nearly 2-kilo package of ground beef purchased at the local Costco. With only two exceptions at the very end, each meatball has a pre-cooked weight of 120 grams, or a bit more than four ounces, which puts each meatball into burger-patty territory. I've got nearly twenty of these suckers (2000 grams divided by 120 grams is 16.6666, and I did indeed have 17 meatballs), so that ought to be enough to placate/mollify/satiate the boss.

A Hominid-style meatball doesn't go the traditional route with the binders: there are generally no bread crumbs and eggs. Instead, my binder of choice is cheese (Parmigiano in this case), which I think makes for a more succulent globe of protein overall. The usual herbs and seasonings are added in: salt, pepper, powdered garlic, powdered onion, dried basil, oregano, and parsley. There may also be a little cayenne hiding in there, and definitely some chili flakes. This time around, I did cheat and use two eggs, but that's almost nothing compared to two kilos of meat. I thought about cheating further and adding panko, but in the end... nah.

The balls will simmer in red sauce at the office to heat them back up (they've been fridging all night). People will have the option of grabbing two or three if they want. I know the boss will grab some. "Spaghetti without meatballs is like a eunuch," he texted the other day.

*Cast iron, despite the fact that it's a bit of a chore to maintain (not in the sense of being physically difficult to maintain, but more in the sense of demanding constant mindfulness to avoid rust and other frequent problems), is prized by cooks the world over for its even heating: a cast-iron skillet might initially have a hot spot as it's warming up, but eventually, the entire pan will be aglow with about the same level of infrared.


Charles said...

Those are some massive balls you've got there, dude.

Kevin Kim said...

They are pretty massive. They started at about 120 g each, but by the time they cooked down, they were probably closer to 90 g apiece. Still big at three ounces.

The meal filled everyone up, of course. Almost no one had room for the panna cotta, and the people who did eat it said they loved it but couldn't finish (I poured 175 g into each bowl; next time, if I do the same dessert again, I'll pour in half that amount, which may still be too much, given how rich it is). Always sad when people can't finish, but not finishing is better than forcing oneself to eat: eating should never become work. I'll just make smaller desserts next time.