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Pork Crackling, Lemon and Fennel Swedish Meatballs

These Pork Crackling, Lemon and Fennel Swedish Meatballs are deliciously creamy and cosy, best served with a generous helping of mash and a mound of greens.
Prep Time2 d 20 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time2 d 35 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Swedish
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 712kcal


Homemade Pork Crackling

  • 300 g pork skin or organic free range pork scratchings


  • 60 g ground almonds or almond pulp from making homemade almond milk
  • 60 ml milk or water or veg stock
  • 1 onion finely diced
  • 2 teaspoons butter
  • 500 g pork mince
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds crushed
  • Zest ½ lemon
  • 2 cloves garlic crushed
  • 25 g parsley leaves finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 egg lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons sweet rice flour
  • 450 ml chicken stock
  • ½ teaspoon redcurrant jelly or cranberry jelly
  • 150 ml crème fraiche


Homemade Pork Crackling

  • Day 1:
  • If you are making your own pork crackling then the day before you want to eat your meatballs, prepare your pork skin by rubbing all over with plenty of salt and pepper.
  • Place the skin in a wide saucepan and just cover with water. Bring to a gentle boil then put the lid on a leave to simmer for about an hour and a half.
  • Remove the pork skin from the water and pat dry. Leave to cool before refrigerating overnight to completely chill.
  • Day 2:
  • Slice the pork skin into strips. Then heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a wide bottomed saucepan and when hot, place the pork skin into it. As the skin turns into crackling it will spit a lot so clear the sides of anything you don’t want covered in oil and stand back. Fry for about 10 minutes on the first side and 3-4 minutes on the other side. Remove with a slotted spoon and leave to cool. Then chop finely. Reserve the fat in the pan for making the meatballs.


  • Mix the ground almonds with the whole milk then cover and refrigerate overnight. If you are using almond pulp then you do not need to do this step.
  • Place the diced onions in a medium saucepan with the butter and cook on a very low heat for about 20 minutes to half an hour until the onions are soft, golden and melting. Leave to chill in the fridge until completely cool.
  • Mix the pork mince in a large bowl with the soaked almonds, caramelised onions, fennel seeds, lemon zest, garlic, parsley, thyme, about two-thirds of the pork crackling and an egg. Season then mix thoroughly with your hands until completely combined.
  • Shape into balls, about 50g each, and heat the pan with either 2 tablespoons of the reserved pork fat or olive oil. When hot, drop your meatballs into the pan and cook for about 3-4 minutes on each side.
  • Remove the meatballs and set aside. Remove most of the fat from the pan, leaving about 2 tablespoons.
  • Add the sweet rice flour on a low heat, stirring into the fat.
  • Slowly add the stock, whisking into the roux until it’s all combined. Keep whisking as the sauce begins to bubble. Taste for seasoning.
  • Add the redcurrant jelly and whisk through. Then add the crème fraiche and whisk into the sauce so it becomes thinner and smoother. Again, taste for seasoning.
  • Place the meatballs back into the pan and coat thoroughly with the sauce. Cook for about 5-10 minutes until they are piping hot then remove from the heat.
  • Serve the meatballs with the gravy and plenty of parsley and the rest of the pork crackling sprinkled over the top.


Calories: 712kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 51g | Fat: 51g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Cholesterol: 176mg | Sodium: 1113mg | Potassium: 410mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 855IU | Vitamin C: 8.9mg | Calcium: 97mg | Iron: 2.3mg