A coworker came to me on Tuesday and said “Rosie, we’re having a potluck on Thursday. Bring whatever you like.” Total panic. OMG – one day to plan a dish, one day to make the dish – what to do? What to bring?
It wouldn’t be so bad if only I didn’t have a cooking blog that all my coworkers follow regularly. It wouldn’t be so bad if I did not “wow” them during the holidays every year (when pot lucks are planned well in advance). It wouldn’t be so bad if only I didn’t hear from my coworkers the remainder of the day “Can’t wait to see what you come up with, Rosie.”
Whatever I did, it had to be spectacular, something I could whip up quickly. Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the worst days at work – long, stressful and unpredictable. I might get home by six in the evening or ten o’clock at night – it was impossible to tell. Right now, the party supply industry is in its slow season, I had that much on my side.
I thought about bringing a tray of deviled eggs. My deviled eggs are always an office favorite. While the idea of deviled eggs did cross my mind, it’s one of those trays I always make – and as popular as they are, it’s becoming a rut. I needed to think outside the box – go for something different. What about Checkerboard Cheese Antipasto Platter? That would be nice – but Hubby doesn’t eat cheese and I wanted to make something he would like, so toss that idea out the window. I thought about my 37-Layer Taco Dip, but I had just made it recently as part of our Super Bowl party. I even considered the old stand-by Cocktail Sausages in Barbecue Sauce, but again been there, done that. The remainder of Tuesday was spend working while thinking about what to make – recipes and ideas running about in the back of my mind. (Thank you Lord, for allowing my brain to concentrate on work while running party ideas at the same time).
Then it struck me – Teriyaki Meatballs. Rather than make the meatballs from scratch, I could use those frozen balls. That would save time. And my Teriyaki Sauce is delicious – why not combine the two? Put it all together in a crock pot and let it cook. By the time lunch time rolled around, everything should be piping hot and ready to serve. All I needed to do was a little prep work in the morning. Deep breaths – this was going to be awesome!
Note: There wasn’t meatball one left by the end of our little impromptu get together. Yeah, it was a big hit. Oh, and I also brought my Beautiful Green Bean and Cherry Tomato Salad for good measure – another hit. To switch things up a bit, I used both Red and Yellow Cherry tomatoes.
2 tablespoon cornstarch
2 tablespoon cold water
1 cup white sugar
1 cup soy sauce
½ cup cider vinegar
1 teaspoon grated or ground ginger (fresh grated is best)
2 clove garlic, minced
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 can pineapple chunks, juice reserved
3 lbs Frozen Meatballs, plain
Dissolve cornstarch in cold water. In a small saucepan over low heat, pour cornstarch mixture.
Add sugar, soy sauce, vinegar, garlic, ginger, ground black pepper and pineapple juice. Increase to medium-low and cook, stirring frequently until sauce thickens and bubbles, about 20 minutes.
Place meatballs and pineapple chunks into a large crockpot.
Pour sauce over meatballs, stir to blend.
Cook meatballs on HIGH for about 2 hours. Turn crock pot to low, continue to cook about 2 hours longer, stirring occasionally to baste meatballs in sauce.
Serve immediately or reduce crock pot to warm and serve when ready.
These can be served alone, as an appetizer or served over sticky rice for dinner.