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Grilling: Italian-Style Meatballs with Pecorino and Parmesan

I helped a friend out at a barbecue competition a couple weeks ago, and I think the friendly competitive spirit really got to me. I found myself craving one of my favorite things anyone has ever brought to any of my cookouts: Italian-style meatballs with cheese.

The base is a fairly standard meatball base: ground beef chuck, pork, bread crumbs, and eggs, with some additional seasonings of garlic, parsley, and red pepper flakes. Then I went in heavy with grated Parmesan and Pecorino Romano, making the cheese the primary flavors against the meat.

Now my memory might be a little hazy, but I'm fairly certain these meatballs were right on par with or maybe even better than the ones I remember loving a year ago. They were the perfect consistency to hold up on the grill, cooking through and browning beautifully. The cheese lends a bit of a bite and a complex saltiness that melds into the rest of the mixture to make a cohesive flavor throughout.

About the author: Joshua Bousel brings you new, tasty condiment each Wednesday and a recipe for weekend grilling every Friday. He also writes about grilling and barbecue on his blog The Meatwave whenever he can be pulled away from his grill.

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