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Porcupine Meatballs in Creamy Tomato Sauce

Porcupine Meatballs in Creamy Tomato Sauce (Tefteli)

Julia Frey of Vikalinka
(Makes 30-35 meatballs)These porcupine meatballs baked in a rich sour cream and tomato sauce are a perfect mix of deliciousness and nostalgia!
4.89 from 9 votes
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Course Main
Cuisine Russian
Servings 6
Calories 534 kcal


For the porcupine meatballs

  • 100g/1/2 cup rice uncooked
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 large carrot grated
  • 1 lbs ground beef extra lean
  • 1 lbs ground pork extra lean
  • 1 tbsp fresh dill chopped
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 0.5 tsp pepper

For the creamy tomato sauce

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 large carrot grated
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh dill chopped
  • 400g/14oz canned tomatoes
  • 250ml/1 cup chicken stock
  • 3 tbsp sour cream full fat
  • salt


  • Cook rice in plenty of water the same way you would cook pasta until al dente. Rice shouldn't be too soft, which should take about 5 minutes. Drain and set aside.
  • In a frying pan heat olive oil and butter. Cook onions and carrots over low heat for 10 minutes until tender.
  • In a large bowl combine beef, pork, dill, onions, carrots, rice, salt and pepper.
  • Roll meatballs, then brown them on all sides in a little oil but don't cook all the way through. Set aside.
  • In a large and deep pan cook onions and carrots in olive oil and butter over low heat for at least 15 minutes until tender and caramelised, add minced garlic and cook for a few seconds while stirring, add dill, pureed plum tomatoes and stock, turn the heat up and bring to a boil.
  • Take off the heat and stir in sour cream. Return the meatballs back to the pan and spoon the sauce over them. The sauce should nearly cover them. If it doesn't, add more stock.
  • Bake covered at 300F/165C for 40 minutes, then uncover and bake 10 minutes longer. (If baked at a higher temperature sour cream tends to separate!)


Calories: 534kcalCarbohydrates: 26gProtein: 32gFat: 33gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 2gCholesterol: 117mgSodium: 1078mgPotassium: 841mgFiber: 3gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 3707IUVitamin C: 11mgCalcium: 77mgIron: 4mg
Keyword porcupine meatballs
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