Meat balls are very well-known across various culture. Chinese meatballs (specifically, a dish common in Shanghai cuisine) are most often made of pork and are usually steamed or boiled, either as-is, or with the addition of soy sauce. There are meatballs called Lion’s heads. These can range in size from about 5 cm in diameter to about 10 cm. Smaller varieties, called pork balls, are used in soups.
A Cantonese variant, the steamed meatball, is made of beef and served as a dim sum dish, which was what I made here. This version is what we often ordered when we go for a dim sum. I just got new bamboo steamers and trying to think of all kind of ways to make use of them :)

Chinese Steamed meat balls

CHINESE STEAMED MEAT BALLS(10-15 small meat balls)

1/2 lb (500 g) ground beef
1 1/2 to 2 oz (50-100 g) tapioca flour
1 Tbsp salt
Dash of white pepper
2 cloves of minced garlic
1/2 C of ice cubes
1 handful of spinach leaves (finely chopped) – optional


1. Grind the meat and adding ice cubes bit by bit

2. Mix in the rest of the ingredients and grind again until smooth

3. Grease your two hands with oil and make 1 meat ball first

4. Prepare your steamer and steam 1 meat ball on high heat for about 15 minutes or until cooked through and have a taste and see if you need to add more salt or pepper (as you cannot taste a raw meat ball). If the taste is right, then you can proceed to steam the rest, if not, at least you still have a chance to adjust the seasoning here

We had it with a bowl of plain congee/porridge with egg for breakfast :) For other variants of congee, check them out here


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