Five Spice Meatballs with plum and soy sauce

November 15, 2016

This is a modification of a recipe I found in a magazine recently. It’s really tasty, and economical – the quantities given here will feed 5 to 6 people.

  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 10 mins


1Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium heat and add 2 Tbsp light olive oil or rice bran oil. Cook the onion gently for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion is soft but not browned.

2Add the ginger and five spice powder and stir for about a minute or until nicely fragrant. Set aside to cool slightly.

3Mix the plum sauce, sherry/mirin and soy sauce together in a small bowl and leave to one side while you prepare the meatballs.

4In a large bowl, place the mince, egg and about ½ cup of breadcrumbs.

5Add the spiced onion mix and combine – the easiest way is to use clean hands and squish it around!

6Add more breadcrumbs as needed to get a soft mix that can be rolled into small balls.

7Use about 1 heaped Tbsp for each meatball – roll the mix into a ball and place on a plate. Continue the process until all the mix is used up.

8Heat a thin layer of oil in the bottom of a frying pan and cook the meat balls over medium heat, turning regularly, until they are nicely browned and cooked through.

9Remove the meat balls to a paper-lined plate and drain the excess oil from the frying pan.

10Replace the meat balls in the pan and pour over the plum sauce, mirin/sherry and soy sauce mix. (If you like lots of sauce, double the quantities of plum sauce, soy sauce and wine/sherry in the recipe above.)

11Heat, stirring gently, until the meatballs are coated with sauce and warmed through.

12Serve on steamed rice, with either steamed Asian greens or steamed green beans and slices of fresh tomato.


1 onion, finely chopped

1 Tbsp finely chopped or grated fresh ginger

1 tsp Chinese five spice powder

500g prime beef mince (lower fat content than the usual grade)

1 tsp salt

Fresh gluten-free breadcrumbs to thicken and bind the meat mix

150ml plum sauce (see recipe below, or use a commercial one)

4 Tbsp mirin (rice wine) or cooking sherry

2 Tbsp soy sauce

2017-11-17T10:51:11+00:00 0 Comments

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