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Easy, Delicious Burgundy Beef Meatballs in the slow cooker


Several years ago I discovered Rachel Ray. Not literally, as in, I’m who found her and made her famous. I mean, I found her show, “30 Minute Meals”, on the Food Network. I learned how to cook from her, mostly. I did learn some things from my Mom and Sister, but at a young age I was not interested in cooking, so foolishly, I didn’t seek to learn from them. Now, I want to learn from them, from Rachel Ray and from anyone who is willing to give me recipes along with some instructions as needed. One of my favorite, “30 Minute Meal” recipes is the Beef Burgundy, or Beef Bourguignonne, as is the official title.

Recently I was looking through a cook book and found a lovely slow cooker recipe for Meatballs in red wine. That started the wheels turning, and I have combined the two recipes to come up with Burgundy Beef Meatballs. My son liked the egg noodles, but not the meatballs. He likes the regular meatballs with spaghetti sauce, but not so much the burgundy meatballs. He is, after all, just 4 so I wasn’t too surprised the flavor’s didn’t appeal to him. My husband and I, however, devoured them, last night as well as tonight. They taste even better when allowed to sit over night.

The meatball recipe I will give makes a lot of meatballs, so I used some for the spaghetti dinner one night then froze the remainder of them.

For the slow cooker, or crock pot, recipe you’ll have to plan on eating this the next day. The reason being, the meatballs need to be frozen in order to be able to cook them all day without turning them into golf balls. It’s worth it, trust me, I’m the queen of not wanting to take more than a few minutes or an hour to cook, much less one whole day, but you’ll be glad you did! Apparently, I’m also the queen of run-on sentences.

I’ll give an alternative at the bottom though, if you don’t want to wait.


2 lbs. ground beef

2 eggs

1 1/2 cups regular bread crumbs

11/2 teaspoon cilantro leaves

1 large shallot finely diced

1/4 teaspoon pepper

4 strips thick cut bacon

2 tablespoons flour

Beef stock

Mix the all the ingredients together (except bacon, flour and stock)

Line a baking dish with foil Shape into ‘golf ball’ sized balls, you’ll want about 30 meatballs for the slow cooker

Place in prepared pan (no need to grease or use oil)

Bake in a 350 oven for 30 minutes or until the meatballs are no longer pink in the middle

While the meatballs are baking:

Fry the bacon in a skillet until crispy

Remove and place on paper towel lined plate

Remove all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon grease

Keep heat on medium,

add the flour and stir until combined and a lovely shade of light brown, being careful not to burn

Add the beef stock 1/2 a cup at a time and stir with whisk until there are no lumps and the gravy starts to thin a bit

You don’t want a very thick gravy

Crumble the bacon into the gravy

After the meatballs are cooked through, add them to the gravy and let them cool

Once cool, place the meatballs AND gravy in a zip lock baggie, or freezer safe container and place in the freezer overnight

The next day, or whenever you are ready to make the Burgundy Beef Meatballs, place the frozen meatballs with the gravy in your slow cooker and add the following:

1 bag Pearl Onions

4 sprigs of Thyme or 1 1/2 tsp dried thyme

2 Bay leaves

2 1/2 cups red wine

1 1/2 tsp dried Oregano

1 cup Sliced mushrooms (preferably not from a can)

2 cups of beef stock

1 cup water

Cook on high for 4 -5 hours or on low for 8 hours

Serve with egg noodles

If you don’t want to wait overnight then simply add the above ingredients into the skillet with, a very thin, gravy. Add the meatballs, allow to simmer together for about 30 minutes, watching carefully that the gravy doesn’t burn, or thicken too much.

Store left overs together with the egg noodles, overnight in the fridge, you will love the way the flavors melt into each other. Divine!


Crazy New Year Traditions



As I get older I’ve taken a turn for the boring where New Year is concerned.  As a child, I was anxious to stay up late and ring in the New Year.  Dreams of elaborate, elegant parties in beautiful dresses, with champagne and confetti pouring all night, kissing my dream man at the stroke of midnight, by a pianist playing Auld Land Syne on a black Grand Piano.  Then walking the streets hand in hand as revelers passed wishing us Happy New Year everyone all smiles and well wishes.

As a teen I was able to stay up late to ring in the new year. No elaborate parties, just a family gathering where Non-alcoholic grape bubbly was served along with Cherries Jubilee, black-eyed peas and other foods I would only eat on New Years.

In my college years I stayed up late on New Years Eve, working.  Yes, every New Year for 4 years I was sitting inside the Community Center on my life guard stand watching a bunch of teens swimming and enjoying themselves on New Years Eve.  At the stroke of midnight, Steve (who also had to work) and I would run into the hallway, a quick “Happy New Year” peck and back to our stations.  Our food of the evening?  If the chaperones thought about it, we had pizza.  If not, we had whatever was in the vending machine.   Still no elegant parties……..but at Mom’s always ham with black-eyed peas.

After I graduated from college and moved to Myrtle Beach, we went clubbing until the New Year came in.  Going home smelling of the club we had just left, smoke and stale beer.  Ick.  Oh, no food too lazy to cook for myself, feeling guilty because I just knew my New Year was going to be awful because I didn’t have any black-eyed peas.

Where were the elegant parties?  The ones I saw on tv as a child?  I guess they are still on the tv being watched by some other young kid with dreams of romance on New Years Eve.  After I moved back to the beautiful state of Virginia,  New Years Eve was spent on the ski slopes, then bouncing from house party to  house party bored out of my head and waiting as each minute drag by to the New Year.  Slowly my New Years Eve revelry dissipated to sitting at home watching the ball drop then lighting sparklers to ring in the New Year.  Texting, “Happy New Year” to a few people then going to bed.  Dinner? Left overs, but always black-eyed peas.

In case you’ve missed the theme, Black-eyed peas.  I’ve never had the movie themed New Year I dreamed of as a kid, probably because it doesn’t exist, but I’ve almost always had Black-eyed peas.  So my favorite New Year traditional food is……..  Black-eyed peas. Picture credit.  This site in no way is endorsing the website from whom the pictures is credited.