Who knew such a big deal could be made out of meatballs?
This past Sunday, the American Swedish Historical Museum hosted “The Great Meatball Matchup,” a meatball-making contest. It was made up of two competitions. In the first, local restaurants battled it out for meatball supremacy; in the other, locals put their meatball recipes up against each other. In the restaurant competition, the people in attendance cast a ballot to vote for their favorites. On the other side, the chefs of the restaurants judged the locals’ meatballs.
Although the event was hosted by a Swedish society, the contest was not limited to Swedish meatballs. The Swedish ones were delicious (of course), but there were also Italian, Spanish, Asian and Greek meatballs. Some had tasty tomato sauce to go with it, while others—such as the ones from Nam Phuong—looked like a sushi roll with a meatball in it. The Vietnamese restaurant served theirs in a delicious peanut sauce. Regardless of the sauce, each meatball had its own unique taste created by spices infused when cooking.
The restaurants obviously had great-tasting meatballs. However, it was really interesting to taste some of the local people’s recipes, most of which were quite good. Anyone could tell that meatball-making was a serious thing for these people; much more than a mere hobby. A lot of time and preparation went into making them, and it showed in the final result. For many of these competitors, making meatballs has been a joy for a long time.
“I learned how to make my [Swedish] meatballs from my mother,” said one local contestant. “My family has always loved my meatballs, so I figured I would put them in the competition.”
The American Swedish Historical Museum (ASHM) is a little-known Philadelphia museum. It is located in FDR Park, which is a couple minutes’ walk from the sports complexes. It was founded in 1926 to preserve Swedish and Swedish-American heritage in Philadelphia. Throughout the museum, you can see Swedish artwork and other cultural artifacts. All the architecture in the museum is Swedish architecture. There is a room of maps showing the progress of Swedish culture in the United States and another room dedicated to famous Swedes and Swedish-Americans. The museum is a must-visit if you are interested in different cultures.
The Great Meatball Matchup was a fun experience; put it on your calendar for next year. For anyone looking to learn a little about different cultures and eat some delicious meatballs, this is the event to go to. Why not join the fun? The ASHS will accept entries from anyone who wants to sign up. For more information on the American Swedish Historical Museum and the winners of the competition, click here.
You can contact Nick Iuele at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo: © http://www.americanswedish.org/frames.htm http://blogchef.net/pineapple-meatballs-recipe/