Hi! I hope it’s still up to date)
I have an easy relationship with stuffing. I just add my favorite spices to taste. In this case, from the same mass of meat you can make both meat balls and cutlets. Give them different shapes and bake them in different ways.
During the quarantine, IKEA declassified the recipe for their famous meatballs) I stick to keto and I have a recipe for them without flour and starch Ikea meatballs recipe
My mother in law from Copenhagen makes em similar to you to but streamlined a bit. Just pork for starters. She puts an onion through a cheese grater too. Egg and tiniest amount of breadcrumbs and milk. Browned in butter not as dark as yours and maybe a bit more shaped like a slightly flattened egg. We have them with red cabbage kraut (Rødkål) and lingonberry. She takes it in the polite but not approving Danish way when I put habanero sauce on mine.
I found my frikadelle recipe from mixing 4 other frikadelle recipes.
Most cooking recipes are based on ‘theft’ from other cooks.
By the way - The ikea recipe you linked to, they add the salt together with a bunch of other stuff at the end of the recipe. Major mistake there. As soon as I see this in a frikadelle and meatball recipe, I’m already skeptical about the author and cook making it.
I’d say mormor’s frickadeller are very juicy she likes to serve them at room temp too which really does accentuate that. I think the onion juice from the grated onion is her “trick” to having them juicy, that and the ground pork which isn’t particularly lean. I also don’t think she cooks em as long as you may, but they are browned. I haven’t seen too many danes go light on the salt or butter and she’s no exception. I think it’s a very mild meatball still, in a pleasant way, not needing to be coated in sauce. I’ve had a bunch of others around Denmark that I like too but I keep that to myself! Her other favorite recipes (apart from the xmas meal) are a beef stew that is very mild and uses a ton of bay leaf and breaded sole (fried in butter of course).
I’m not saying you can’t make excellent frikadeller and meatballs without adding the salt as the first ingredient, but 90% of professional chefs add the salt first then mixing/stirring the meat TOUGH & THROUGH with the salt for 4-5-6 minutes until all the salt is completely mixed into the meat.
This means you’ll need less flour at the end thus making a more moist and juicy frikadelle and meatball.
It also means the other ingredients will bind more easily to the minced meat, which again will make a more uniform and better mixed frikadelle.
I’ve been there 3 times now. Recent plans got waylayed by Covid. Was hoping to go this summer…I don’t think it’s gonna happen. We have an amazing time there and great family fun, and love hosting our danish relatives in the USA (they go crazy for "american pancakes!) My wife speaks Danish, Swedish and English and shes the first american in the family (she’s also swedish cuz as you know it flows from bloodline with her dad even though he’s from copenhagen, he’s swedish)
Good thing is I’ve got the family treasure here in Los Angeles.
Where are you from in Denmark
It’s a really lovely stew. She makes things very simply but it works and lends consistency to her cooking. Floured and salted beef cubes braised. Then liquid added. She uses water, not even wine or beer. There’s no tomato or potato in the stew. Yes on carrots. I think there may be pearl onions too sometimes. And peas at the very end. at least a dozen bay leaves that get removed at the very end of course. Served over mashed potatoes. It’s mild but really tender and delicious with the clean beef and bay leaf flavors shining through.
I’m ⅛ Swedish by the way, I understand 100% Swedish, but don’t speak it. 3 of my cousins are Norwegian.
I’m from Copenhagen, some of my family are from the danish area called Jutland (Aarhus & Aalborg)
I was born in Copenhagen 5 km/3 miles from where I live now. I’ve lived around Copenhagen for my entire life now.
Did consider at one point to live in Malmo (Swedish city 20 miles across the the sea from Copenhagen), but never did so.
Copenhagen is a nice rather small capital city compared to the other big cities in Europe like Paris, Madrid, London, Rome - but it’s a very calm relaxed city to live in, we’re only 1.5 million in Copenhagen and the stress level here is rather low.
I live circa 2 miles/ 3 km from downtown central Copenhagen.
Great to hear your wife is half danish half Swedish.
We have a love hate relationship with the swedes.
It’s just for fun. On a serious level, we’re very close and also closely related to swedes. Denmark used to own the entire southern part of Sweden and the entire Norway.
Now we’re the smallest country in Scandinavia.
The timing of adding salt depends on the consistency you want to achieve with your frikadellen. If you add salt first (and stir significantly) you will get a springy consistency as you remove water, dissolve some proteins and ultimately form a loose protein network with some insoluble proteins. Might be a Danish thing but that is a consistency not really desired in Northern Germany where you salt much later (and don’t stir the meat (mixture) much to not have dense frikadellen. And I can’t remember seeing any frikadellen recipe using flour (which again will make the final product dense) but normally you use something like an old broetchen (roll) soaked in milk (some people also like using panko). I would also add a but umami with Worcestershire sauce
I don’t add salt at all, mostly because I avoid unnecessary salt, and some of my patty and gravy ingredients are already salty. Nor flour. My mother never included that, and I see no need for it either.
In 98% of the danish frikadelle recipes I’ve seen, they use flour.
There’s no right or wrong here of course. It’s all subjective.
When you add salt as the first ingredient I believe you prepare the meat to better obtain the rest of the ingredients. You also do a sort of dry brining, as you make sure the entire meat comes into contact with the salt. The meat mixture should rest at least 1-2 hours in fridge before you make the frikadeller.
The dissolved protein is a good emulsifier that makes fat and water combine better, as the protein settles in the boundary layer between fat and water in the minced meat.
Therefore, a minced meat dish is better connected when the minced meat is first stirred with salt and allowed to rest so that the dissolved proteins can be found in place.
The frikadeller I make are never hard or tough, in fact the contrary, they are fluffy and light in taste, so the theory you have is in my view incorrect and not what really happens when you stir a minced meat with salt alone as the first step.
That not a theory - you can find a lot articles (even books) covering it for example when they investigate here in the US when to salt a patty. The science behind salting ground meat (timing, resting etc) is very well established. Pre-salting (and additional resting) will lead to a protein network which has a more “sausage-like” mouthfeel.
Here is just one example but there are many more (even more serious scientific literature)
Your link is useless since it resolves around burger patties.
I personally never stir my ground beef, when making burger patties. I simply roll it out and shape the patties by hand.
Frikadeller is not comparable to burger patties at all.
You’re comparing apples to oranges and your link has nothing to do with frikadeller.
But one thing is true. The internal texture of a frikadelle is indeed comparable to the structure of a sausage.
So number 3 with the salt added prior to mincing it would be the best option for a minced meat for a Danish frikadelle.
You could just as well have listed a link about brining ribey steaks.