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Dutch Meatballs with Brown Beans and Bacon
(Gehakt Ballen met Bruine Bonen en Spekjes)


The trick of this meal is timing it so that all the dishes are ready at the same time. Serve the meatballs in gravy with the beans, potatoes, onions and bacon. The onion and bacon pieces are used as toppings on the beans or suit your own taste and sprinkle them over everything.


  • 1 pound very lean ground beef
  • 1 large onion, chopped fine
  • 1/4 cup paneermeel or bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon parsley flakes
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1 tablespoon gehakt seasoning*

* This is a seasoning made especially for meatballs. Use your favorite seasonings for beef to equal 1 tablespoon.


  1. Mix all ingredients together and form into meatballs. I find it easier to separate the batch into halves again and again that way I end up with eight meatballs of equal size. The Dutch method would use four large meatballs (one per person) but I find that hard to handle in the cooking process.
  2. Brown the meatballs on medium-high heat in a frying pan; add gravy and allow to simmer 15 to 20 minutes.
  3. Gravy: Melt 1 tablespoon butter or margarine. Add 2 tablespoons plain flour slowly, mixing well. Pour in 1 cup each of water and milk, mixing well. Season to taste. Or use your favorite brown gravy recipe.
  4. Brown Beans: Rinse pinto beans and remove stones. Soak overnight in salted cold water. Drain, place in a pot with just enough water to cover. Simmer approximately 1 hour until tender.
  5. Potatoes: Peel and quarter 4 large white potatoes. Boil gently for 10 to 15 minutes until just done.
  6. Spekjes: The only way to describe this is small chunks or slices of bacon. In Holland they come prepackaged. A quantity equal to about 1/4 pound should be enough. Cook them until done.
  7. Onion: Chop the remaining onion into large chunks.


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