Meatballs Around the World (& Right Here at the Lake of the Ozarks!)

 Meatballs have a special place in the hearts (or rather, stomachs) of most of the diners at Li'l Rizzo's Italian restaurant. That's because we've taken special care to create a meatball that not only tastes amazing but also is so large, only one is needed for each plate of spaghetti! 

This particular meatball is so incredible, it's even earned itself a spot on the appetizer menu at our Lake of the Ozarks Italian restaurant. (You can get that, along with all of our other appetizers, for half-price during Happy Hour every Monday-Friday from 3-6 pm and all day on Sundays too!) 

Meatballs Around the World

You're probably most familiar with meatballs made from ground beef, but the definition states that a meatball can be made by rolling any type of ground meat into a ball, sometimes with other ingredients. It can be fried, baked, steamed, or braised in sauce.   

As partial as we are to Li'l Rizzo's meatballs, it's still interesting to see how others make meatballs in their part of the world. Here are a few of the many, many different styles we found. 

  • Britain: Spicy pork meatballs are traditionally made from pig's heart, liver, and fatty belly meat or bacon minced together with herbs and sometimes bread crumbs. 
  • Denmark: These are usually made out of ground pork, veal, onions, eggs, salt, and pepper formed into balls, flattened somewhat, and fried. They also make a version served in curry sauce with rice as well as smaller meatballs in soup. 
  • Germany: They make a very famous variant of meatballs that contain either anchovy or salted herring and are eaten with caper sauce. 
  • Norway: Meatballs are often served with brown sauce, cabbage in cream sauce, lingonberry jam, and potatoes. They should really be called meat cakes due to the fact they are flattened into a bit of an oval shape, more like a patty than a ball. 
  • Turkey: Here you'll find many different versions in a variety of different shapes. The type you are most likely to run across is made with ground lamb or a mix of ground beef and lamb. 
  • Canada: As a part of the traditional dish called ragoût, these meatballs are made with ground pork, onions, spices like cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg, and are simmered in a gravy that's thickened with toasted flour. 
  • Mexico: Meatballs are commonly served with a light broth and vegetables or with a mild chipotle sauce. 
  • China: Typically made of pork, these can be steamed, boiled, or deep-fried, sometimes with the addition of soy sauce. Also, in northern China, meatballs made from minced meat and flour, sometimes with the addition of lotus root or water chestnut, are deep-fried and served in a vinegar-based sweet and sour sauce or in a light broth with chopped coriander.  
  • Japan: One popular variant here is made with minced chicken and served on a skewer. 

Meatballs at Li'l Rizzo's

Here at the Lake of the Ozarks (in our restaurants in both Lake Ozark and Osage Beach) our giant, 6-ounce, homemade meatballs are made with only the finest of ingredients, including ground beef, eggs, green onions, garlic, pepper, salt, and Parmesan cheese. You'll find it on the menu in the following ways. 

Meatball Appetizer
Our homemade meatball topped with chunky meat sauce and sprinkled with Parmesan cheese and parsley. 

Spaghetti & Meatball
Spaghetti noodles and our chunky meat sauce topped with a homemade meatball and sprinkled with Parmesan cheese and parsley. 

Meatball Sandwich
A homemade 6-ounce meatball smothered in meat sauce plus melted mozzarella and Provel cheeses, served on a hoagie with a side of chips. 

How will you have your meatball the next time you dine at Li'l Rizzo's? We've got them here for you 7 days a week along with lots of other delicious dishes of the best Italian food at the Lake of the Ozarks. No matter what you decide order, you'll be pleasantly satisfied! 


(*Disclaimer: Li'l Rizzo's food and beverage items are subject to change at any time and may not be available at both locations. 


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