Meatballs in Egg and Lemon Broth: Youvarlakia Avgolemono

Total Time:
32 min
Prep:
20 min
Cook:
12 min

Yield:
6 servings
Level:
Easy

Ingredients
  • 1 3/4 pounds ground beef
  • 1 cup cooked white rice
  • 2 eggs plus 4 egg yolks
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped parsley leaves
  • 2 3/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon plus a pinch of freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 tablespoons lemon juice
Directions

In a mixing bowl combine the beef, rice, 2 eggs, onion, 2 tablespoons of the parsley, 1 teaspoon of the salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of the pepper and mix well. Portion into heaping 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoon portions and, using your hands, shape into balls. Add 6 cups of water to a large saucepan or Dutch oven and add 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt. Bring to a low boil, then add the meatballs, one by one, and simmer until the meat is cooked through, about 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove the meatballs from the cooking liquid and set aside, covered, to keep warm. Strain the cooking liquid through a fine mesh sieve and return the cooking liquid to the saucepan and keep warm over a low fire.

In a small bowl whisk the egg yolks until smooth. Add the lemon juice and whisk to combine. Slowly add 1 cup of the hot liquid to the egg-lemon mixture, whisking to combine. Slowly whisk this mixture into the remaining hot liquid in the saucepan; do not allow to boil or the sauce will curdle. Cook, stirring constantly, until slightly thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. (The liquid will still be brothy.) Add the remaining 1/4 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of black pepper, return the meatballs to the broth, and serve immediately, in shallow soup bowls, garnished with the remaining parsley.

Note: Meatballs prepared in this manner may be served either as a soup or as a main course. The proportions in this recipe result in a brothy sauce appropriate for soup consistency. However, if a thicker sauce is desired, the sauce may be thickened by addition of 1 or more egg yolks and more lemon juice may be added, to taste, as necessary.


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    MIy family loves Greek food, so I made this for dinner. It is now my son's favorite soup. We also made it for my daughter to take to her class at school when they studied Greek culture. It was a big hit! The only change we make is with brown rice instead of white.
    I loved the meatballs, added veggies, chix broth and orzo instead of rice.
    I'm usually a big fan of Emeril's recipes, but this one was a big let-down. The broth is super-lemony and one whole onion was overpowering in the meatballs. I even tried to re-use the meatballs with some pasta and sauce, but the onion flavor was just too much (and I love onions!). I had to throw the whole thing away. Sorry Emeril :(
    This is one of my favorite dishes from when I was growing up. I thought I would try Emeril's way, but it does nto compare to the old fashioned way. My version includes uncooked rice and a little bit of nutmeg. Boy this is the best meal accompanied by fresh bread on a cold wintery night
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