Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Recipes: Turkey Meatballs

My husband -- a true meat eater -- loves them. I love them. My twins love them, and I just cut them up (with or without sauce) and serve with broccoli, or tiny pasta, or whatever I have on hand. The only one who doesn't love them is my older daughter, but she is not a big meat eater anyway.

My family devours these so often that I double the recipe and freeze extras in Ziploc bags. Today I used two packages of ground turkey and ended up with about 56 meatballs. You can use them with pasta and sauce, or just with sauce to make meaball grinders like the original recipe. Having extra meatballs in the freezer is a great way to throw together a meal, or have something on hand for the babies to eat that I know they will love and is healthy for them.

The recipe is basically one from a Rachael Ray "30 Minute Meals" episode, called "Chicken Parm Meatball Subs." It calls for ground chicken, but I use whatever I ground poultry I can get, whether turkey or chicken. I don't follow it exactly anymore -- I just eyeball amounts of stuff. Here is the one ingredient that makes these meatballs so tasty:

Montreal Steak Seasoning.

Sure, it says "steak" on it, but it doesn't matter -- it's what makes these meatballs so very good.

Here's Rachael Ray's original recipe:

1 1/2 pounds ground chicken (or turkey)
1 tablespoon grill seasoning blend (Recommended: Montreal Steak Seasoning by McCormick)
1 large egg
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (I use whatever grated cheese I have on hand)
1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs
Handful of chopped parsley leaves (I've used dried too)
Extra-virgin olive oil, for liberal drizzling

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
Place meat in a bowl and season with grill seasoning. Add egg, cheese, bread crumbs, parsley and a serious drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil to the bowl. Mix the meat and form meatballs. Bake meatballs 15 minutes until firm (I bake mine about 20 minutes).

(Weight Watchers Note: Lately I have been using 2 lbs. of meat, and cutting down the Parmesan cheese to 1/4 cup and keep the oil to 1 tsp. With 24 meatballs per batch, it breaks down to 2 Points+ per meatball.)

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