Do you remember the children’s song Old MacDonald’s Farm? The name of this appetizer comes from the meat combination of beef meatballs and bacon, cow and pig, moo+oink=Moink. It is really easy to make and always a party favorite. They can be prepared in either the home oven, the smoker or even on a grill. I have listed some suggested glazes below for you to try or you can come up with your own. I encourage you to experiment; my guess is your guests are going to love them even if you serve them naked, I meant without a glaze, not you serving naked!!. As an appetizer, I usually figure about two balls per person, if you’ve got some big eaters, you might add a few more. Chances are there won’t be many left over.
What you’ll need:
Frozen precooked meatballs (as many as you’ll need) I prefer the ½ ounce size.
Regular sliced bacon proportionate to the number of meatballs. One slice does 3 balls. Toothpicks (not colored)
Your favorite BBQ rub- I like to use 3 Eyz
Dipping glaze, heated
Allow the balls to thaw in the refrigerator over night. Cook bacon about ½ way, I like to use the micro wave. Cut each bacon strip into 1/3’s. Wrap each ball with 1/3 slice precooked bacon, secure with toothpick This can be done up to a day in advance, just refrigerate the wrapped balls until you are ready to cook.
Preheat oven or cooker to 225-250, if using a grill prepare an indirect fire. Spread wrapped balls on cookie sheet and sprinkle with BBQ rub, be sure to coat balls all around.
Place balls onto rack and cook for approximately 1.5-2 hours until the bacon is done to your liking. If you are using your home oven, I would place a Pam sprayed baking rack onto a cookie sheet that has been covered with aluminum foil for easier clean-up.
Adding the glaze:
As the balls are cooking, prepare your glaze. Again the amount needed will be based on the number of balls you are preparing. When the balls are finished cooking, remove from cooker, dip in glaze, return to heat for approximately 5 minutes to set the glaze before serving. When sauce is set, move balls to a platter and serve. Note: Keep hands and fingers away from serving tray to avoid injury from ravaged guests coming back for more. Glaze suggestions: Remember, your not baking here, so the amounts and proportions of sweet and heat don’t have to be exact and can be determined by you as the pit master.
Your favorite BBQ Sauce- Add a table spoon of butter and heat the sauce to thin before applying to the balls. Hot Pepper Jelly- Heat jelly in a small sauce pan to thin, you can toss in a little BBQ sauce here if you like. This is a good one to add a little kick to the party. Fruit Jellies- Apricot, orange marmalade, apple, grape, the sky’s the limit- As above, heat to thin, some like it sweet. Add a dash of cayenne here to bring a little heat if you like. Maple Syrup- A little too sweet for me, but some really like this one. Honey Chipotle Hot Sauce- Heat in a sauce pan with a tablespoon of butter to thin a bit, this has a great kick, along with a wonderful smoky and sweet flavor. This stuff is good on anything and has multiple uses around the kitchen and grill. Chinese Duck Sauce- Available in many grocery stores, just heat a bit then dip the balls. As you can see, the glaze can be anything you want, try one, prepare an assortment, or better yet, make up your own signature glaze. Rum, bourbon, pineapple, peach, butter, can all be used, reduced in a saucepan to proper consistency, then applied as a glaze, have fun with it.