8 September 2009

Gehaktballen (Dutch Meatballs) and Stamppot

This is a delicious family recipe for gehaktballen, which are Dutch meatballs and stamppot, which I make using potatoes and spinach. I grew up having this from my mother and grandmother, and it is quite a simple to make, very tasty, traditional Dutch dish (And quite healthy too!). Just the thing to have on a cold winter's night.

Dutch food (sadly) has a reputation for being a little boring and bland, but I am here to prove this silly theory wrong. Dutch food may not have the decadent reputation of French food, but it can still be sexy! Once you have tried this recipe I am sure you will also agree with me.

You will need:
This will make enough for 4 people (or 2 very hungry people).
  • 500 g minced beef
  • 1 onion finely diced
  • 2 cubes of beef stock or 2 teaspoons of beef stock power
  • 1 egg
  • Breadcrumbs
  • 6 large potatoes
  • Butter
  • 1 - 2 packets of spinach (250g) depending on how spinachy you would like the stamppot
Simply add the minced beef, diced onion and egg into a bowl, crushing the 2 cubes of beef stock over the top, as well as half a cup of breadcrumbs. Combine using your hands until all the ingredients are mixed together. If the mixture is still a little wet, add in more breadcrumbs.

Roll the meat into medium sized balls and place in the fridge for 30 mins or so.

Peel the potatoes and boil them until cooked. Mash them with some milk, salt and butter and then add in the spinach. I used a packet of frozen spinach so I just microwaved it but if you are using fresh spinach then chop it up, boil it, and then add it to the potatoes. Mix well together and warm up again on the stove just before you serve.

Then simply fry your meatballs in a frying pan with a good splash of oil and make some gravy to go with it. I used gravy powder with some boiled water added it to. My grandmother used to cook the meatballs slowly over a couple of hours in the gravy, however I do not have that level of patience for meatballs, so I fry them fairly quickly. There are pros and cons - pros for a quick cook are that the outsides of the meatballs and deliciously crisp and crunchy. Pros to slow cooked meatballs are that they are incredibly tender inside. Choose your own destiny!

I was always taught to make a little mound of stamppot on the place first, and then make a well in which to place the meatballs and gravy.

Serve with some apple sauce and a bit of mayonnaise. Yum!!


  1. Yummy! Stamppot is a favourite in our house. My husband's family is Dutch. I usually it make with a large can of kale instead of spinach. I know other people use frozen kale that the grew in their garden. They just break of some and toss it in frozen with the potatoes.

  2. Thanks for visiting and the comment Kirsten!

    We bought a can of kale a few months ago and used that as well... it really was very good. I don't think you can go wrong with stamppot... especially if you add a little butter... :D


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