The meat is usually finely ground. It is sometimes passed through a grinder several times to get a smooth, pasty texture that will bind together when cooked. The grinding mixes the protein in the meats up with the fat in the meat.
The meat is often seasoned, and mixed with chopped vegetables and fruit. What is called “binding agents” may also be added: they can be breadcrumbs, cooked rice, eggs, flour or mashed potatoes.
Forcemeat is different from plain minced meat, in that minced meat has nothing added to it, and is coarser.
It can be used alone to make food such as meatballs with, or used as a stuffing. Vegetarian versions can be made based on mushrooms or beans.
The word for stuffing in English used to be farce, from the French word to stuff which is “farcir”. Consequently, meat for stuffing was “farce meat. The pronunciation and spelling changed over the years to become “force meat”.