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Sunday, January 11, 2015

Spicy Tangy Meatballs

I knew I was going to be making meatballs tonight, but I didn't know if I was going to go turkey or beef.. and further down the road, if I was going to go Chinese or Italian.
The quick scan of my fresh inventory screamed Italian, although I could have easily gone either way. I don't know why I did this.. because I know deep in my heart that it's not in season, but I bought a large bag of zucchini this week.  I wanted a taste of summer.. even if the weather is almost summer like.  Yesterday (mid January, mind you, and in France.. not California) I went jacketless outside all day.  Yes, I was in long sleeves, but not a sweater, and I was almost sweating.
This is not a complaint.  I love when the weather is sunny and warm any time of the year because it reminds me of home, but it also reminds my body that "seasons" only happens in movies, and in "real" life, anything is available year-round.
And so as back in Cali, I could eat Zuppa Toscana in mid-summer, here in France, I'm making griddled zucchini with sundried tomatoes and meatballs in the winter.
And I'm ok with that.. because my actual real life body is on California time.  It might be a life saving denial strategy.  My body is a refugee to it's "safe place" where terrorists are a threat, but they seem far away.
I've made similar recipe in the past, but I gave it some peps.. and it was well worth it.. because there's nothing that screams Summer like little bursts of sundried tomatoes in your meatballs.
Yield 16-17 small meatballs
250g (1/2 lb) ground beef
1 carrot, finely grated
3 cloves garlic, grated
1 small red onion, finely diced
1 Tbsp diced green chile
1 Tbsp strong mustard
6 sundried tomatoes, diced
1 Tbsp piment d'espelette
1 Tbsp worcestershire sauce
lots and lots of fresh cracked pepper
1/2 tsp fleur de sel (flake salt)
1 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
drizzle olive oil for meatballs
1 egg yolk
2 Tbsp olive oil for cooking
1.  Mix all the ingredients together with your hands until homogenous.
2.  Form small balls in the palm of your hands.  I made about 17, but it depends on the size you want them.
3.  Heat the 2 Tbsp olive oil in a wok or heavy based pan and cook the meatballs carefully without overlapping so they brown on all sides, about 5 minutes, turning them from time to time.
4.  Set aside until ready to use.
I served mine over pasta with griddled zucchini and artichoke hearts in a spicy tomato sauce laced with extra sundried tomatoes.

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