Meatballs with celeriac and apples

Meatballs with celeriac and apples

Scandinavian Comfort Food
Columbus Leth

Meatballs are not only for frying. In Scandinavia, we have a lot of dishes with boiled meatballs, and when you look in old cookbooks, like the 1837 one by Madam Mangor, she includes recipes for meatballs in sauce. This classic dish is, I think, one of my ultimate comfort dishes.


Quantity Ingredient

For the meatballs

Quantity Ingredient
500g minced pork
1 small onion, finely grated
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons plain flour
2 tablespoons breadcrumbs
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For the broth

Quantity Ingredient
2 litres water
1 tablespoon sea salt
3 bay leaves
5 thyme sprigs
600g celeriac
2 leeks
3 apples
100g butter
3 tablespoons plain flour
200g spelt grain
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
small bunch parsley or chervil, chopped, to serve


  1. Mix the minced pork with all the other meatball ingredients. For the broth, pour the water into a saucepan, add the salt and herbs and bring to the boil.
  2. Use a spoon to form the meatball mixture into balls, lower them into the boiling water and let them cook for 10–15 minutes until they rise to the surface, which means they are done. Remove them from the broth with a slotted spoon and set aside. Strain 800ml of the broth into a jug.
  3. Meanwhile, peel the celeriac and cut into 2-cm cubes. Slice the leeks and rinse well. Cut the apples into slices 1cm thick.
  4. Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the flour and stir well, then add the reserved broth a little at a time, stirring constantly until the sauce is smooth, without any lumps. Add the leeks and celeriac and let it simmer for 20 minutes. Add the meatballs and apples about 5 minutes before the end of cooking, and cook until the meatballs are warmed through.
  5. Meanwhile, rinse the spelt grain in several changes of cold water. Cook in lightly salted water for 15–20 minutes, then drain. Season the meatball sauce to taste with salt and pepper, sprinkle with the parsley or chervil and serve with the spelt.
comfort food
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