Ham Balls: A Pennsylvania Dutch Delicacy

My husband is from Lancaster PA, right in the heart of  Pennsylvania Dutch country. One of the delicacies of this generally bland cuisine is ham balls. I tasted my first ham ball about a month ago at my mother-in-laws 60th birthday party and was instantly addicted. I have spent the last few weeks salivating over the sweet, meaty morsels and have done my best to re-create this classic.

Ham Balls

  • 1 1/2 pounds ground pork
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground ham
  • 1 cup very fine bread crumbs (homemade is best)
  • 1/4 teaspoon Diamond kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 2 tablespoons pineapple juice
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 large eggs, beaten

Glaze

  • 1 cup pineapple juice
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon catsup (homemade is best)
  • 2 teaspoons mustard powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and spray a 9 x 13 casserole dish with cooking spray and set aside.

Combine all of the glaze ingredients in a liquid measuring cup and whisk to combine. Let the mixture while you are making the ham balls so that the flavors will meld well.

In a large bowl combine all of the ham ball ingredients.

Shape into 24 meatballs and place them into the casserole dish.

Bake the meatballs for 50 – 60 minutes or until cooked all the way through when tested with a meat thermometer. Baste every 10 minutes with glaze.

Serve hot and enjoy!

Combine all of the glaze ingredients in a liquid measuring cup and whisk to combine. Let the mixture while you are making the ham balls so that the flavors will meld well.

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