The first reaction when my family saw this dish on the dinner table was a 'Wow'. Reason was because this is the first time they get to eat an extra large size meatballs. There no fighting for the meatballs as each is only entitled to one.
This is a presentable dish which is easy to prepare with only a few ingredients. It looks very similar to Lion’s Head but this is a simpler version with addition of Dong Quai [Angelica Ginseng] and Qi Zi [Wolfberries] to the soup. You will notice a unique herbal fragrance and natural sweetness of the meat and cabbage. The extra large size meatballs are firm but nice with the crunchy, sweet waterchestnuts in them.
Recipe adapted from Yum Yum Magazine No.93 with modifications
250 gm minced meat
3 waterchestnuts – peeled and chopped
1 tsp chopped ginger
½ tbsp cornstarch
½ tsp salt
Dash of pepper
700 ml water
6 pieces cabbage leave
2 slice dong quai
1 tbsp qi zi
½ tsp salt to taste
- Mix minced meat, waterchestnuts, ginger and egg in a bowl. Add in salt, pepper and cornstarch. Mix into a sticky paste. Divide into 3 equal portions.
- Cook meatballs in water over low heat for 5-10 minutes until set. Dish up. Discard water.
- Place cabbage leaves in a small claypot, pour in water. Put in the boiled meatballs, dong quai and bring to boil.
- Lower the heat and continue to simmer for 1 hour. Add in qi zi and simmer for another 10-20 minutes or until meatballs are thoroughly cooked.
- Lastly add in seasoning [salt and pepper] and serve.