Mexican-style Beef Meatballs
1 beaten egg
1 lb. lean ground beef -ground goat would also be good
1/2 t. Mexican oregano
1/4 c. masa harina
1/3 c. milk
1/3 c. minced onions
Form into plump meatballs using about 1 1/2 T. meat mix each, to make about 22 meatballs. Chill several hours. Brown meatballs in an oiled skillet. Meanwhile, cook 2 c. sorted pinto beans in a pressure cooker with 2 qts. water, 2 T. vegetable oil, and 2 dried chilies for 30 minutes on high pressure, then allow the pressure to drop naturally.
During the three years Marilyn Tausend traveled across the United States and Mexico, talking to hundreds of Mexican and Mexican-American cooks and compiling the more than 200 recipes from their home kitchens found in her cookbook, Cocina de la Familia, she says, "Meatballs in one form or another -tiny meatballs in broth, bite-sized ones in party appetizers, and to my delight, glorious plump balls of ground meat in some sort of enriching sauce -were served to me more often than any other meat or chicken dish." Mexican cooks, Marilyn Tausend, Diana Kennedy, and Rick Bayless all give recipes for richly flavored, complex from-scratch mole sauces -usually used for saucing some type of poultry- and I hope to actually make one of these someday. Instead, this is a much easier version of 'some sort of enriching sauce.' It is probably quite authentic, in that I suspect a majority of busy Mexican-American home cooks make mole this way, rather than the more time consuming from-scratch way.
Mix 1 part commercial Rogelio Bueno Mole Sauce (I have it on good authority that this is the best commercial mole sauce to use) with three parts water or chicken broth in the unwashed skillet that the meatballs were cooked in. Stir until smooth, adding 1/2 - 1 t. to taste of each salt and sugar.
Pour the mole sauce over the cooked meatballs -I transferred mine to my Dutch oven- and simmer 10-20 minutes. Meanwhile in the washed skillet, refry the tender, drained pinto beans in 2 T. vegetable oil or lard, adding salt and cumin to taste. Mash, cook, and mash some more, until desired consistency is achieved. Cook separately 2 c. white rice.
Serve meatballs in mole sauce with plain white rice, refried beans, a garden vegetable -I cooked some of our frozen corn- and a bit of pickled carrots and/or pickled jalepenos.