Albondigas are Spanish meatballs. Albondigas are popular as a Spanish tapa. You'll find them in bars and restaurants throughout Spain.
This albondigas recipe includes one of the world's most expensive ingredients of azafran, or saffron in Spanish.
- 1 lb Ground Beef, 80% Lean
- 1/4 Cup Panko Bread Crumbs
- 1 Egg
- 4 Cloves Garlic, Minced
- Salt & Pepper to Taste
- 3 TBSP Olive Oil
- 1 tsp Smoked Paprika
- 32 oz Can Crushed or Diced Tomatoes
- 1 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
- 1/4 Cup Wine, Pinot Noir or Merlot
- 1 Bay Leaf
- 1 Small Onion, Chopped
- Pinch Saffron
- 1/2 Cup Chicken Stock
In a medium bowl, whisk the egg until beaten.
Add the ground beef, 1 garlic clove and breadcrumbs. Season with salt and pepper and the smoked paprika. Lightly mix together with a fork, or your hands, until incorporated, be careful not to over mix. Roll into 1" inch balls.
Heat 2 TBSP olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium high heat. Add some meatballs to the pan, being careful not to overcrowd them. Brown the meatballs on all sides, about 5 minutes. Remove them from the pan and place them on a paper towel lined plate.
While cooking the meatballs pour the chicken stock into a small sauce pan, add saffron and warm over medium heat. Set aside.
Once meatballs are done add olive oil to the large sauté pan and heat over medium high heat, add the onions and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add wine, red pepper flakes and remaining garlic, stir for 1 minute. Add saffron-infused stock and tomatoes, and simmer to thicken. Mix well and bring the sauce to a simmer.
Remove the bay leaf. Add the meatballs and reduce the heat to medium low. Simmer the meatballs in the sauce for 20 minutes, until the meatballs are cooked and the sauce is thick.
Serve with crusty bread and a glass of red wine.