“Lion’s Head”: Chinese Meatballs with Chinese Cabbage

Preparation time: 45 minutes

Servings: 4

Chinese New Year’s dishes are full of symbolism. This “Lion’s Head” dish is no exception. The meat balls stand for lions’ heads and the Chinese cabbage stands for the lions’ manes. But most of all, it’s delicious comfort food for Blue Monday ;) Try it out now!


  • 650g pork neck
  • 300g water chestnut
  • 1 egg
  • 1 large Chinese cabbage
  • 5 spring onions
  • 4 cm long, thick ginger


  • 2 tsp grated ginger
  • 1½ Tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp Shaoxing cooking wine
  • 2 Tbsp oyster sauce
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • ½ Tbsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • ½ tsp broth powder
  • 2 Tbsp corn starch
  • 150 ml water

Stew sauce mix:

  • 650 ml water
  • 2 Tbsp Shaoxing cooking wine
  • 2 Tbsp oyster sauce
  • 2 Tbsp red braising sauce
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • Pepper and salt
  • Sesame oil
  • Corn starch


Wash the meat and dry it with a paper towel. Chop the meat into very fine pieces or use a meat grinder. Chop the water chestnut into fine little cubes. Cut the ginger into thin slices and grate some of the ginger. Cut the spring onions into rough chunks. Remove the leaves from the Chinese cabbage and cut the leaves into three equal pieces.

Mix the ingredients for the marinade in a bowl.

Put the minced meat and egg in a large mixing bowl. Mix well and make it one large ball. Hold the meat mixture tightly with both hands and throw it back into the bowl from a 10-centimeter distance. Repeat this about 30 times. Throwing the meat ball makes the mixture elastic, and light and tender at the same time.

Then add the pieces of chestnut and the marinade. Mix well. Add 50 ml water to the meat and knead the meat until it has absorbed the water. Repeat these steps until you have added all the water. The meat needs to have the consistency of a loose, moist mixture. Let it rest in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Divide the meat into equal portions of about 70 gram and use wet hands to make nice, round balls. Heat a layer of oil in a pan and fry the meat balls over medium heat for 3-4 minutes, until brown. Set aside.

Put some of the cabbage leaves, ginger slices and spring onions in a large stew pan. Mix the water in a bowl, followed by the cooking wine, oyster sauce, red braising sauce and sugar. Add pepper and salt. Then pour the sauce mix into the stew pot and put the meat balls on top with some cabbage leaves. Simmer the meat over medium heat in about 45 minutes until done. Add the remaining cabbage leaves in the final 10 minutes.

Take out the vegetables and the meatballs. Mix the corn starch in a small bowl with a bit of cold water until it becomes a porridge. Pour it over the sauce while stirring and while the sauce is still cooking.

Pour the sauce over the meatballs and sprinkle a bit of sesame oil on top.

  • Su (número de referencia): REC338
  • En existencias