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Published:January 22nd, 2009 13:00 EST
Danny Bortnick uses bacon to make a meat ball! Learn how!

Danny Bortnick uses bacon to make a meat ball! Learn how!

By Rocco Loosbrock


Danny Bortnick is the executive chef at Firefly Restaurant in Washington, DC.  He caught wind about our quest to find the best bacon related recipes.  He sent us little bacon meatballs with olive oil-tomato sauce and potato spaghetti. " 


Firefly is the quintessential urban neighborhood restaurant that offers contemporary American comfort food to the city`s many `regulars` who dine out several times a week.  Upon arrival, you will immediately notice the floor-to-ceiling "firefly tree", hung with lanterns and lit by candles. Seated in the intimate 60-seat dining room or the 32-seat lounge, watch the chefs work their magic in the kitchen, tucked behind a rustic stone wall. The backlit amber glass bar and the natural finishings of polished wood and iron throughout create a soothing environment, accentuated by a welcoming, attentive staff.

Located in downtown Washington DC`s Dupont Circle neighborhood, near The Phillips Collection art galleries and the Dupont Circle Metro Station, Firefly makes an ideal dining destination for locals and visitors alike.


Danny has graciously provided us with his recipe instructions:




Makes 12 servings


2 pounds ground beef

1 pound ground pork

1 pound ground veal

5 ounces ground bacon

1 tablespoon ground fresh garlic

3 tablespoons meatball spice (See accompanying recipe.)

2 tablespoons salt

1V cups bread crumbs

4 eggs

V cup heavy cream

1 quart tomato sauce

12 basil leaves, for garnish

Parmesan, shaved, for garnish

For the meatball spice (yields 3 cups):

X cup fennel seeds

W cup coriander seeds

2 tablespoons cumin seeds

W cup black peppercorns

1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 tablespoon sweet paprika

1 teaspoon chili powder

2 tablespoons dried oregano

1W cups kosher salt

2 tablespoons C&H or Domino sugar


Combine all 4 ground meats with the garlic, meatball spice (preparation follows), salt, bread crumbs, eggs and heavy cream. Form into 2-ounce balls.


Sear the meatballs, browning evenly on all sides. Warm the tomato sauce with the meatballs.


To prepare the meatball spice:


Toast the fennel, coriander, cumin and peppercorns until perfumed. Add the rest of the spices and the sugar, and grind in a coffee grinder until medium-coarse. Store in an airtight container.


To serve:

Serve 4 meatballs per person, with 4 ounces of sauce over the top. Garnish with basil leaves and shaved Parmesan.


Signing off at Pigging out!
Rocco "Boss Hog" Loosbrock

Use coupon code (sop) to get a 10% discount at


Rocco owns and runs a Bacon of the Month Club called The Bacon Freak Bacon is Meat Candy Bacon Club as well as a Wine Club called the Coastal Vineyard Wine Club


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