Thursday, December 16, 2010

MMmmm Meatballs!!

Who doesn't love meatballs ??  You can make them out of almost anything .. Beef , Pork, Turkey , chicken or just about anything that can be ground up :)  They can be baked, pan fried, added to a stew or casserole...  the options are almost endless once you start thinking about what you can put in the meatball itself .  Today I'm going to show you one of my favourites,  simply, easy and loads of flavour.  For this meatball adventure, I'm going to start them in the pan , and finish them in the oven.  So if you are following along , you will need an oven safe pan.  

The minimum required is just a pound of meat , and egg and bread crumbs... but don't be afraid to have a look around in your fridge for some extra flavours.

Here I have diced Red Onion, Red Pepper, Mushrooms, some garlic/mushroom hummus, a couple loves of garlic,  a pound of free range ground beef, a dried chili pepper,  bread crumbs, salt and pepper, Lea & Perrins and a free range egg

Using your hands mix everything well, and form into balls. Ive made them as large as a 1/2 pound each, but golf ball sized is one of my favourites. 

On medium heat , with a pat of butter give them a quick pan fry to get some colour on them. 

They don't need to cook thru, just brown them on a couple of sides.  To lock in the juices and add some extra flavour.
You will want to preheat your oven to about 350F at this point.  I'm going for a meatball bake, not quite a casserole... you'll see. :)

Now that the meatballs are done, its time for the extras.  Mushrooms, garlic, red pepper & my first ever canned tomatoes :)

Add the mushrooms, pepper and garlic to the pan, sizzle for just a minute. 

Top with a tin of tomatoes, or in this case a jar :)  and slide it into the oven.

After about twenty minutes , it should look something like this , time for the final touches.

I added a few hand fulls of frozen peas (I originally planned on broccoli, but it was badly freezer burnt ) I also added a small handful of aged cheddar to this , and back into the oven for 10 minutes.

Ta da ..  everything is done, the tomatoes helped to create just enough sauce for this. 

Time for plating and eating!! 
The great thing about meatballs , is you can have them with anything , potatoes, corn , bread, vegetables, pasta .. the list is almost endless .   Be creative , add your favourite flavours and enjoy :) 
Rich.