Who doesn’t love a good meatball? Being from Kentucky we have a very proud bourbon heritage. In fact, we even have a really interesting Kentucky Bourbon Trail. My wife and studied at Campbellsville University located in the heart of Kentucky. The Makers Mark distillery is located just down the road from there. As proud Kentuckians we do three things well.
3. Betting…on horses
The Kentucky derby is part of every Kentuckians identity and we proudly celebrate it every year. Food and fashion are essential elements to any derby celebration. Every week or so at Northlich a department within the agency throws a happy hour. This week it was my departments turn and being in public relations we know how to impress.
This is a barbecue bourbon meatball recipe. It takes a classic KY bourbon and fuses it with a classic homemade barbecue sauce with an upscale twist. The meatballs are baked in the oven for 15-20 minutes and the sauce is cooked and reduced for about a 1/2 hour. Both are then combined in the crockpot to marry into one pot of deliciousness and kept warm for party attendees.
The sauce elevates the entire dish. It’s tangy and sweet with a bit of bite at the end. The sauce is enhanced by the bourbon and adds that little bit of familiar to the meatballs. This dish is sure to be a hit at your own Derby party or next gathering!
- 2½ lbs of ground chuck
- 2 lbs of ground pork
- 1 cup of Parmesan cheese
- 1 cup of plain bread crumbs
- ½ of a grated onion
- ¼ cup of dehydrated onions
- 2 tsp of kosher salt
- ¼ tap of black pepper
- 2 tbs of garlic powder
- 3 oz of bourbon (ky's finest)
- 1 cup of ketchup
- 1 cup of brown sugar (dark is best)
- 1 tbs of horseradish mustard
- 1 tbs of whole grain Dijon mustard
- ½ tbs of sriracha sauce
- 2 tbs of chili powder
- 2 tbs of minced onion
- 1 tbs of granulated garlic
- ¼ cup of pickle juice
- 1 jar of Rosemary spiced apricot preserves
- 1 cup of chicken stock
- In a medium saucepan add all ingredients for the sauce and place on the stove on medium low.
- Stir to combine and stir occasionally.
- Allow to simmer and reduce for 20-25 minutes.
- In a large mixing bowl place all dry ingredients and stir to combine.
- Add in meats and using your hands beak up the meats.
- Add in eggs and grated onion.
- Mix the ingredients until they are all combined, careful not to overwork the dough.
- Using a small spring loaded ice cream scooper or eye ball it, roll the balls and place on a sprayed cookie sheet.
- This mixture made about 50 or so meatballs.
- Place in a 400 degree oven and cook for 15-20 minutes or until done.
- I placed the cooked sauce into a crockpot and then placed the done meatballs inside the sauce.