Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Turkey Meatballs

There is nothing more comforting on a freezing cold winter's day than a big bowl of spaghetti and meatballs.  My lightened up version is delicious and I promise you won't miss the red meat at all.  My husband LOVES my turkey meatballs, and that's saying a lot since he would probably eat a big fat steak every night if he had his way.  Plus this is a dinner the entire family will enjoy!

This is my own recipe for turkey meatballs, based on lots of experimentation and watching my grandmother make them over the years.   I also bake mine which saves a lot of calories.  I often make my own sauce too, but today the kiddos were both fighting naps all afternoon, so the jarred variety just had to do.  I used Bertolli's Marinara with Burgundy Wine, but if you are looking for a quick recipe for homemade sauce, visit an earlier posting I did:
You'll notice I've changed my meatball recipe since then, and that previous recipe is for the crockpot.  Cooking sauce low and slow all day is amazingly scrumptious and highly recommended if you can throw it in there before you start your busy day.   For this recipe, I let my meatballs simmer in the sauce for about 3 hours through the late afternoon.  Tonight I served the meatballs with barilla plus pasta and a huge green salad.  If you haven't tried the line of Bolthouse Farms dressing (found in the refrigerated section), please do.  They are the best tasting, low calorie dressings I've had.  And they don't replace the fat with lots of sugar.

So anyway, back to the meatballs.  They were a huge hit, as usual.  I think a few quotes I heard at the dinner table were, "Solid!" and "That was some good stuff!".  I rest my case.  Give my Turkey Meatballs a try - I would love to hear back from you. 

Happy Cooking!

Turkey Meatballs
2 slices of whole wheat bread (I had Sara Lee's this week cause it was on sale)
1/2 cup milk (I used 2%)
1 egg, beaten
1/3 cup parmesan cheese
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp granulated garlic
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 pkg ground turkey (mine was 20.8 oz)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and spray with cooking spray.  (Easy cleanup - one less pan to wash).  In a medium sized bowl, place the two slices of bread and pour the milk on top.  Let the milk soak into the bread for 3-5 min, moving the bread around if necessary so every part is saturated.  Add the egg, cheese, and spices.  Mix to combine with a fork, breaking the bread up, so it looks like the picture below.  Kind of a wet glob, but I promise it is what keeps the lean meat moist and flavorful. 

The meatball "seasoning"

Then add the turkey meat and mix just until combined - do not over mix.  Form the meat mixture into golf ball sized meatballs.   I usually get about 15 meatballs.

The meatballs before the oven.

Bake the meatballs at 400 degrees for 25 minutes.  When they come out, they will look like the picture below.  I usually wipe them on a paper towel before adding to the sauce.

And once they are added to the sauce, as pictured above, simmer for 30 minutes to several hours, depending on how much time you have.  Yummy!!!

We had our meatballs and sauce over some whole grain spaghetti with a huge green salad.  Enjoy!
I love salad!  I have at least 1 a day
Time to eat!  I gotta run...until next time :)

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