Okay you guys…I’m a little freaked out.
My house is SO. QUIET.
Hubby took Batman to his taekwondo class tonight, and on a whim, he decided to take Bug with him, too.
Do you know what this means? I am alone. COMPLETELY ALONE. In my house! Not in the car running errands…not for half of my shower…not getting dressed upstairs while chaos ensues downstairs…GENUINELY alone. All by myself, in my own house. This literally has not happened ONCE since having kids. For real. I may have had some alone time in a room, or the kids may have been somewhere, but I’ve never been genuinely alone – without kids AND hubby – since Batman was born.
And I hate it.
But mostly, I don’t know what to do with myself.
Well, except for the wine. That part is under control. “Hello, Red…we meet again”.
I should be cleaning. Or taking the dog for a walk. Or relaxing in the tub. SOMETHING. But after they left, I poured some wine, sat on the couch, and I’ve just been absorbing the silence. IT’S SO WEIRD. I can’t even will myself to move for fear that I might be hallucinating and my center of gravity shifting may make reality come crashing back in.
So today was really strange weather. I swear…I saw snow. What’s up with that?! And then it turned to sleet and rain. Overall it was just gloomy.
GREAT crock pot meal weather.
So today I decided to make it my meat day for the week. I had meatballs in the freezer and had been craving Swedish meatballs ever since I had mentioned it a few weeks back. What better excuse, right?
I’ll admit – growing up, I only had two experiences with Swedish meatballs: Lean Cuisines and IKEA. You’ll never hear me speak ill of either one. They were DELICIOUS. The Lean Cuisine’s got me through many a high school work shift, and the drive to Illinois was always made worth it by the IKEA meatballs alone. So, when I’m looking for a little break, and a little comfort and stress relief, gimme the meatballs.
This recipe isn’t super authentic. I think there’s jam in the regular Swedish meatball sauce. And probably more nutmeg. But it tastes pretty true to what I remember, so I like it. You will too. Promise.
I do a couple of things differently here.
First, I don’t really care for cream of soups in a can. Don’t get me wrong, they’re GREAT in a pinch, and certain recipes just scream for them. But I’m not crazy about all of the sodium, ESPECIALLY if I’m using something like onion soup mix already in my recipe. So I make my own. It’s REALLY easy. It takes all of 5 minutes, and it’s basically just a roux that you add milk and broth to, along with whatever flavoring you’re going for. In this case, since I already had mushrooms and Lipton soup mix in the recipe, I made it plain with a little pepper and nutmeg. You won’t miss the can. At all.
I like to sub in whole wheat flour when I can. Sometimes that’s hard. It really has a different flavor profile, and can sometimes feel like it’s wrecking the dish. NOT the case here. You can’t even tell. You can ABSOLUTELY use all-purpose flour in this recipe if you prefer, but I like to do myself a favor and get it in when I can.
This is another one of those meals that my kids just gravitate to. I think it’s the egg noodles. They’re so creamy and inviting in the sauce. Of course, this dish would work awesome with any short noodle or mashed potatoes. I’m partial to the wide egg noodles though, and strongly recommend the same. It reheats awesomely in the sauce too, so make the whole bag of noodles and have enough for lunch the next day. Maybe. It’s that good, you might not.
In my excitement to eat the yumminess, I completely forgot to snap a picture until after the fact. As you can see, it was enjoyed. Only enough left for Hubby to take a small bowl to work tomorrow. I’m jealous. I wanted to keep it for myself. Always the good wife….
Crock Pot Swedish Meatballs
Frozen meatballs, purchased or homemade (find recipe here)
1 can low sodium beef broth, divided
3 Tbsp salted butter
3 Tbsp whole wheat flour
1/2 cup 2% milk
1/2 tsp nutmeg
8oz light sour cream, divided
1 packet Lipton beefy onion soup
1 8oz package mushrooms, sliced
1 Tbsp whole wheat flour
pepper to taste
Egg noodles, prepared as directed
First, make the cream soup. Melt 3 Tbsp butter in sauce pan over medium high heat. Whisk in 3Tbsp flour, cooking 1-2 minutes until thick. Stir in 1/2 cup milk and 1/2 cup beef broth, stirring and cooking another minute until thick. Stir in nutmeg. Remove from heat.
In crock pot, whisk together remaining beef broth, cream soup, Lipton soup packet and all but 1/2 cup of the sour cream.
Toss sliced mushrooms in 1Tbsp flour to coat, then add to crock pot. Add frozen meatballs. Cook on high for 4-6 hours. Switch heat to low, stir in remaining sour cram, and let cook for additional 30 minutes. Serve over egg noodles.