Monday, March 13, 2006

Ham Balls in Sweet and Sour Sauce

Ingredients for ham balls:
2 cups oatmeal, uncooked
1-1/2 cups milk
3 lbs. smoked ham, ground
1-1/4 lbs. lean pork shoulder, ground
3 eggs
Ingredients for sauce
1-1/3 cups brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
4 teaspoons dry mustard
2/3 cup pineapple juice
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1-1/3 cup dark corn syrup

1. In a large mixing bowl, combine oatmeal and milk. Let stand for 10 minutes. Add meats and eggs. Mix throroughly until well blended. Shape into 1-1/2-inch balls (golf-ball size), place in cake pan(s), and bake at 300° for 1-1/2 hours.
2. When ham balls have cooked for about 1 hour, combine sauce ingredients in a heavy pan and cook until thick, stirring constantly. Keep sauce warm until ready to use.
3. When ham balls are finished baking, drain them well. Place them gently in a large casserole dish or oven-proof saucepan, pour warm sauce over them, and bake an additional 25 minutes covered.

This is my adaptation of a prize winning recipe by Phyllis Hogston of Somerset, Kentucky, that was published in the December, 2004, Kentucky Living print edition. Ms. Hogston notes that the dish "can be prepared ahead of time and frozen, even the sauce." (I have not tried doing that.)

Another great Easy Recipe

Love At Home

There is beauty all around
When there's love at home.
There is joy in every sound
When there's love at home.

Roses bloom beneath our feet,
All the earth is a garden sweet,
Making life a bliss complete,
When there's love at home.

-- John Hugh McNaughton (1829-1891)