For many people, the word meatball means much more than a delicious ball of meat. It can represent comfort, long, happy family meals, or the memory of a trip to Italy. Whether you prefer the classic spaghetti and meatballs, or just love to pick up a meatball sub for lunch, you are sure to want to celebrate National Meatball Day on March 9.
History of National Meatball Day
We may never know who invented National Meatball Day because there are no records of this unofficial holiday being created. But whoever did it was definitely onto something. Meatballs are one of the oldest foods known to Man, and many countries have their own version of it, which means meatballs are an international success. With reason!
Historians estimate that meatballs were made in the 2nd century B.C. in China, most precisely in the region of Shandong, during the Qin dynasty. From there, it traveled to Rome, Persia, Iran, and eventually to the rest of Europe. Each of these places has invented its own version of the meatball, and today almost every country in the world has its own meatball recipe, so meatball lovers are spoilt for choice! One of the most famous versions of the meatball are Swedish meatballs, which are a bit smaller, made with ground beef and pork, onions, white pepper, and salt, and usually served with gravy, potatoes, and lingonberry jam.
Although spaghetti and meatballs is often associated with Italian cuisine, the dish was actually invented by Italian-Americans in the United States, who then brought meatballs over to Italy. It is safe to say that meatballs are one of the most beloved foods in America, as they can be added to almost anything: spaghetti, rice, pizza, and even sandwiches.
Most meatballs in America are made with pork, beef, or a combination of the two, but meatballs made with leaner meats such as turkey or chicken, and vegetarian alternatives have recently become very popular as healthier alternatives.
The beauty of meatballs is not only that they are super tasty, but they are also very versatile. They can be included in appetizers, main dishes, and side dishes. And they pair well with just about anything.
How to Celebrate National Meatball Day
Celebrate meatballs by making a big batch of spaghetti and meatballs and inviting people over for a delicious dinner party. Nothing brings people together like good, comforting food.
Not in the mood for cooking? Many restaurants offer National Meatball Day deals on March 9. Just choose your favorite and place a big order of meatballs.