Chinese Pheasant Meatballs and Cabbage

So far, this is my favorite pheasant meatball, not just because they simmer in broth instead of needing to be browned, but I like the vibrant flavors of ginger and garlic and soy with the pheasant. They are big enough to be called Lion’s Head meatballs, if you know those recipes, although the only thing that ties all such recipes together seems to be the size of the meatball. My 1.5 pounds of ground pheasant made 12 large meatballs. Most recipes that called for a pound of meat, suggest making 8 meatballs.

I have a recipe in a Chinese cookbook for “Meatballs and Cabbage” that I followed for cooking directions, but the seasoning seemed too tame to me, so I added some extra ingredients.

Chinese Pheasant Meatballs and Cabbage

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Prepare the meatballs:

1 1/2 lbs ground pheasant (or pork or chicken, etc.)

1 tablespoon cornstarch

3 cloves garlic, minced or grated

1 tablespoon ginger, minced or grated

1 tablespoon rice vinegar (my ginger was stored in vinegar, so included in that ingredient)

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 teaspoon sesame oil

salt & pepper

Mix all the ingredients and set aside or refrigerate for up to four hours. When ready to cook the dish, form the meat mixture into about 12 large meatballs.

Prepare the cabbage and assemble the ingredients:

1 head of Napa cabbage, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced crosswise

1 1/4 cups chicken stock

2 tablespoons soy sauce

  1. Heat 3 tablespoons oil in large sautéing pan with straight sides and a tight-fitting lid over medium heat. Sauté the cabbage, stirring until wilted, not browned.
  2. Place meatballs on top of cabbage and pour in the stock/soy sauce mixture. Cover with the lid and reduce the temperature to low after the liquid comes to a slow boil. Simmer for 15 minutes or until the meatballs are done.

Serve in bowls as is or with noodles or rice.


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