This past Friday night, I had the pleasure of having dinner with my cousins at The Austin Club, where the nightly special was tableside preparation of Steak Diane. Like a child, I watched every moment as the onions and mushrooms sweat in butter, releasing their natural sweetness and engulfing the room with the most rich and glorious smell. I could smell it from across the entire club. Like heaven. I was inspired by the dish, and it gave me the answer to the question, "What the hell am I to do with this beef heart I have at home?"
Instead of exactly recreating Steak Diane, I was inspired to mimic the flavor in the form of meatballs. I'd been trying to find a way to incorporate organ meats into my cooking, and this was perfect. By combining ground chuck and beef heart, with all the flavors of Steak Diane, cooking with organ meat was not scary as all. The idea was a good one indeed as the finished product caused me to throw my head back in an almost orgasmic, "ooooh yeah!" As lunch, dinner or accompanying red wine as tapas, these meatballs were like salty, buttery velvet, not to mention chocked full of some kickass nutrients you wouldn't get without organ meat.
I Heart Meatballs Diane
serves 4 for dinner, 6-8 for appetizers
1 1/2-2 Tablespoons grassfed butter
1/2 cup onion, finely chopped (about 1/2 medium onion)
4 ounces (about 6) button mushrooms, finely chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1 pound grassfed ground beef
1/2 pound ground beef heart
1 Tablespoon coconut oil
1/2 cup red wine, optional
In a large skillet, melt butter over medium high heat. Add onions and mushrooms and sauteé, stirring until softened, 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in salt, pepper, thyme and parsley. Scrape the onion-mushroom mixture into a large bowl. Lightly rinse and wipe the pan (you will use it again for the meatballs). Add the ground beef and heart to the mixture. Gently combine everything with clean hands, being gentle so not to overwork the meat. Heat skillet to the higher side of medium and add coconut oil. Roll 2 Tablespoons of meat mixture into balls and add to the skillet. Cook the meatballs until medium, about 4 minutes on each side. The tops and bottoms will have a nicely browned crust, and the pink will have just disappeared from the visible equator when they're finished. Remove the meatballs from pan and set aside on a serving platter. Add wine to the pan, scraping up brown bits and stirring it in with the meat juices. Cook until thickened to the consistency of whole milk, about 2 minutes. Serve gravy on top of meatballs.