Am I a Mom too? ... No, I am a dude, having this past year hit the "Big 50"
Do I live in Iowa? ... No, in fact, I do not even live in the US
I must love the country life then.... Nope, I am a city boy living in Oshawa, Ontario Canada (just outside of Toronto)
What we do have in common is the passion for the written word. We may write about different topics but both of us believe in what we write about.
Myself, my passion is the world of BBQ, not just the cooking but but also the products and equipment along with Barbecue Competitions, Restaurants and most of all... The people!
Being a writer covering all things Bar-B-Que allows me to speak with many people from all aspects be it Suppliers, Manufacturers, Cooks, Restaurant owners, Competition Teams and the Fans that go to the events.
If there is one thing that I can say about them all it is that they are down to earth people that love to interact with each other and enjoy the time that they spend doing their craft.
Let's get down to why I am here, Sara asked if I would do a post on her blog, sharing one of my favorite recipes and I decided that I would share one that many people would not know of but has taken the BBQ world by storm the past couple of years and that is MOINK Balls.
MOINKs are a food that is easy to make and is perfect for family get togethers and kids love them.
What is a MOINK? It is a Bacon Wrapped Meatball that has been seasoned and slow cooked on a grill or in a smoker. Wait do not leave just because you do not know how to slow cook or think you need special equipment. Do not worry, as this can be also made using a regular propane powered gas grill. Oh and yet the way the term MOINK was coined by another online friend of mine Larry Gaian,who did not invent the Bacon Covered Meatball but with some friends thought that the Meatball was "MOO" and the Bacon was "OINK" so he just combined them to get "MOINK"
Last June Larry even held an International World MOINK Ball Day where people make MOINKs and send in pictures to him where he publishes them for all to see.
Here is how you can make your own MOINKs
You will need the following.....
- A bag of Frozen Italian style Meatballs... the pre-cooked ones, from your local grocer (most suppliers have approx 72 -90 meatballs in a bag approx. 1" in size.
- 2 or 3 packages of Bacon, Thick sliced works really well.
- 1 bottle of Kraft or equivalent Zesty Italian Dressing. (Oil type not creamy)
- Your favorite pork rub or seasoning.
- Your favorite BBQ Sauce or even Steak Sauce
- Gasp.... Grape Jelly!
It is best to start to prepare this the night before by taking the bag of frozen meatballs (You can make your own too if you like but the frozen ones work well) and open the bag and pour in about half of the bottle of the Zesty Italian Dressing and put them on your fridge to defrost and marinate overnight.
In the morning take out the toothpicks and soak them in water for at least 30 minutes.
You need half of a slice of bacon for each meatball so take out enough bacon and take a pair of Kitchen Scissors or a knife and cut the slices in half.
Take a half slice of bacon and wrap it around the meatball and secure with a toothpick, and repeat for all of the meatballs.
As far as how many MOINKs you will need, I would suggest plan on 6-8 MOINKs per person
Place the wrapped meatballs in a big bowl, dish or cookie sheet.
Use A Pork Seasoning or rub and sprinkle liberally over the top of the wrapped meatballs, note try to use a seasoning that does not have a lot of salt in it as you get salt from the bacon.
Let them sit while you get your BBQ ready to go.
If you have a Gas BBQ with at least 2 burners you want to turn the heat on one side and leave the other side off. Ideally your aiming for around 250 - 275F temperature in the BBQ you should be ok with the burner on low to medium range.
To cook the MOINKs you will be using indirect heating which means your heat source will NOT be under the food it is like your using your BBQ as an oven.
Position your MOINKs on the grill and if you have a warming rack you can use that as well. In my 2 burner Gas grill I can cook about 80 MOINKs at a time using the warming rack as a second level.
Here is an option, if you like some smoked flavour take some wood chips asn soak them in water for 30 minutes before the cook and take a few chips and wrap them loosely in foil and poke holes in the foil with a fork. place the Foil pack over the flames and it will smoke. Just leave the lid down on the BBQ and let the smoke circulate.
Close your lid and the cooking time will be about one and a half to two hours just check every 15 minutes or so after the first hour, looking for the Bacon to be cooked but not too crisp.
Once the bacon is cooked enough to your liking you need to dip them in sauce.
Here is where we do something that seems like a bit odd but this really does work well.
Take your favorite BBQ or steak sauce and add an equal amount of Grape Jelly and mix well. I use a short glass to hold the sauce. Using the tooth pick as a handle, dip each MOINK in the sauce and put back on the grill and then cook for another 15 to 20 minutes the sauce will give you a great glaze to the MOINKs, just be careful as the sugar in the jelly could start to burn if you leave it too long.
They are now ready to serve on a platter, Great for parties or as a finger food when watching the game.
If time is an issue you can make these ahead taking them off the grill at the time you would sauce them and put them in the fridge when your ready for food sauce and reheat on the grill.
I guarantee that you will not have any leftovers as MOINKs are addictive and there will be some that will scarf them down like M&Ms
If your like me and you have been introduced to Low & Slow cooking you will be searching for other cool recipes that you can do on your outdoor grill that is a lot more interesting than Burgers and Hot dogs.
I have more recipes at my own blog Oshawa Ogre's Views, News & BBQ's
If I could offer you all one word of advice it would be to support the small run BBQ sauce and Seasoning makers out there, the quality of the products are so superior to the standard BBQ products that you see on your local grocers shelves. You will find that on my blog I review and promote many of these smaller run makers and you will find links to their websites where you can purchase their products directly online.
*Thank You to Oshawa Ogre for posting at All In An Iowa Mom's Day.