My favorite trick that I've recently embraced for making any type of meatball/meatloaf/etc. is to be sure it includes a panade, which is a fancy word describing a mixture of bread and milk. From the science editor at America's Test Kitchen we learn that:
"Starches from the bread absorb liquid from the milk to form a gel that coats and lubricates the protein molecules in the meat, much in the same way as fat, keeping them moist and preventing them from linking together to form a tough matrix. Mixing the beef and panade in a food processor helps to ensure that the starch is well dispersed so that all the meat reaps its benefits."This step ensure that the meat does not become tough when it is fully cooked through - important as no one likes rare meatball, especially ones that include pork. Unsafe, to say the least.
Frikadellen (or Frikadeller or Frickadelle)
Inspired by Nicolé and adapted from Live Like a German
1 pound of mixed ground meat (3/4 beef, 1/4 pork)
1 small onion
2 cloves of garlic
pepper and salt
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 slice of bread
1-2 Tablespoons milk
Use a food processor to finely mince onion and garlic. Set aside. Add torn up bread to food processor and pulse a few times to make crumbs. Add milk and pulse a few more times to form the panade. Add meat, paprika, egg, salt & pepper and pulse a few times to incorporate. Do not over process. If necessary, remove from processor and finish mixing by hand.
Form into large golfball-size balls and flatten. Place on heated griddle. Cook for a few minutes on each side until cooked through. Serve with mashed potatoes and mushroom gravy.