I love a bargain … be it fashion or food related. And mince is a pretty budget-friendly meal … although my local butcher has the audacity to charge $20 a kilo, flipping ‘eck!
I’ve been testing out a whole host of meatballs recipes lately because DD is a bit of a fan.
He’s tried two of my creations in the past week and gave them the thumbs up.
I saw a pattern emerging, so I decided it was time for one of those round-uppy blogs. And what better subject than meatballs?
Here are a mix of recipes I’m keen to try or have already put to the test.
>> I love the look of this Greek Lamb Tray Bake from BBC Good Food. It’s the next recipe on my must-make list.
>> I tried these spicy harissa lamb meatballs fromBlogging Over Thyme and loved them. I modified the recipe slightly to include red and green capsicum in the sauce, plus I added a tablespoon of harissa and a small jar of pitted olives to the sauce as well. Very yummy with wholemeal cous cous.
>> I love the smokey flavour of chipotles in adobo sauce – I found cans of them at my local IGA. I modified this recipe for Mexican Meatballs from Food.com as well, using an 800g can of diced tomatoes and serving the finished creation with grated cheese, sour cream, guacamole and soft tortillas. My tip would be that adding three chipotle chillies makes the dish VERY HOT. One might be a better starting point.
>> I have a bit of a soft spot for IKEA meatballs, so I’m keen to give this recipe for Swedish Meatballs atFood Network a try.
>> These Pork & Sage Meatballs from Olive magazine look evilly good too.
And a few from my back files …
>> These are based on a Chinese dish called Lion’s Head Meatballs, so-called because the cooked meatballs resemble lions’ heads, with cabbage representing their tails. They’re traditionally made with pork, but I was still with my ex at the time and he won’t eat the stuff so I improvised.
RECIPE: Lamb meatballs with cabbage
750g lamb mince
2 garlic cloves
2 tablespoons fresh coriander
2 tablespoons soy sauce
5cm piece fresh ginger, peeled and cut into chunks
2 eggs, lightly beaten
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons dry sherry
1 cup chicken stock
2 tablespoons corn flour
Peanut or rice bran oil
6 green shallots, chopped
2 garlic cloves
1/2 a medium cabbage, trimmed and shredded
1 tsp sesame oil
METHOD: Blend coriander, ginger, soy and garlic in a food processor. Add to mince with eggs, stir to combine. Roll into meatballs and place on a baking paper lined tray. Chill, covered, in fridge for 30 minutes. Mix together additional soy, sherry, stock and cornflour. Set aside. Heat oil in a wok or large heavy-based frying pan. Fry meatballs gently until golden and cooked through, 8-10 minutes. Remove. Add shallots, garlic and cabbage to the pan. Saute until softened. Add stock mixture and bring to the boil, stirring continuously. Then simmer for 1 minute until thickened. Add a little extra water if too thick. Return meatballs to the sauce. Simmer five minutes. Drizzle with sesame oil and serve with boiled rice.
Recipe: Cheesy meatballs
>> This recipe is dead easy and soooooo delicious. Just toss all the meatball ingredients together, roll them into balls, chuck ‘em in a baking dish and pour two jars of passata over. Guaranteed kid heaven. For my gluten-free readers, try crumbing gluten-free bread, or I reckon they’d go fine skipping the bread. Let me know how it goes.
1/2 onion, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups grated cheese
2 tablespoons worchestershire sauce
2 slices of bread, crumbed
2 teaspoons dried basil
2 x 700g jars passata (add a little water to the bottles and shake to get the last bits of sauce out)
METHOD: Preheat oven to 180C. Mix together all ingredients bar the passata in a bowl. Roll mince mixture into golf-ball sized meatballs. Place in an oven dish. Pour over passata. Bake for 30 minutes. Turn meatballs over. Bake for another 30 minutes. Serve with pasta, if liked, or with veggies.
>> Fellow blogger www.andandrea.com gave me a clever idea for repurposing chevap skinless sausages: roll them into meatballs! Genius idea, Andrea! So last night I turned some into Moroccan Meatball Tagine. Yum!
Recipe: Moroccan Meatball Tagine
INGREDIENTS: 2 trays chevap sausages; 1 tablespoon paprika; 1 tablespoon turmeric; 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger; 3 tablespoons olive oil; 2 large onions, peeled and sliced; 2 large garlic cloves, crushed; 400g can chopped tomatoes; 1/2 tsp cinnamon; 1 cup beef stock; I tablespoon lemon juice; 2 quarters preserved lemon, pulp removed, rinsed and chopped; 100g pitted olives; 1 can chickpeas, drained.
METHOD: Preheat oven to 180C. Heat olive oil in an oven-proof casserole. Add onions and garlic and cook on a low heat until soft. Add paprika, turmeric, cinnamon and ginger. Fry for a minute until fragrant. Add tomatoes with their juice, stock and lemon juice. Halve each chevap and roll into a ball. Place meatballs gently in casserole. Cover casserole and bake 30 minutes. Remove from oven, stir, add chickpeas. Bake 15 minutes. Remove from oven, stir, add olives and preserved lemon. Bake 5 minutes. Serve with cous cous.
Song of the day: Bruce Springsteen “I’m on fire”