23 May 2008

Greek Meatballs

Last weekend I was trying to decide what we should have for dinner during the week and was really not coming up with anything. I actually just wrote on the shopping list, "fruit, veggies, food." But even I know that is a little ridiculous (even though Zach helpfully pointed it out) so I dragged out some old issues of Cuisine at Home looking for inspiration. I found a recipe for Greek Meatballs that looked good. We went to the grocery store and I forgot to buy quite a few things that the recipe called for but, as usual, didn't realize it until I got home to start cooking.

A quick phone call to Zach meant that feta cheese was again on the menu, but I ended up sprinkling it on top of the finished product instead of mixing it in to the meatballs. I didn't have parsley either, so I chopped up some celery leaves to use instead (I feel like tv chef's always tell you to use the celery leaves for something- I think this is the first time I ever have) and added a cup of the cooked lemon rice that we were having on the side in place of bread crumbs. The final result was a rather tasty meatball but the sauce really pulled the dish together. It consisted of just a can of whole tomatoes that I roughly chopped with some garlic and kalamata olives and cooked on the stove for about 20 minutes. The olives gave the sauce a piquant taste that really added to the meatballs.

Greek Meatballs
Serves 4-6
Adapted from Cuisine at Home

1 C cooked rice
1/4 c milk
1/4 c chopped parsley or celery greens
2 T scallion, minced
1 t salt
2 t dried oregano (Greek oregano if you have it)
1 egg
1 lb. ground beef (I used 93% lean) or ground turkey
2 t olive oil
3/4 c kalmata olives, pitted and halved
1 T garlic
squirt of hot sauce
1, 28oz. can chopped tomatoes with their juice (or whole tomatoes, chopped)
Feta cheese, for topping

- Mix first 8 ingredients together. If you have time, let the mixture sit for 30 minutes or so.

- Heat oil in a non-stick skillet. Form meatballs a bit larger than golf ball size (should make 15) and add them to the pan. Brown on both sides and remove from pan.

- Remove all but 1 T. oil from the pan. Add the garlic and olives and saute for about a minute. Add the hot sauce and tomatoes and simmer for 10 minutes.

- Add the meatballs back to the pan and simmer for another 5 minutes or so, until meatballs are cooked through. Serve immediately over rice or pasta.


glamah16 said...

I like whats going on here with the meatballs. I love olives, fets, strong flavors. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I'm originally from D.C.

Jen said...

Thanks for the comment-- I'm always glad to hear from a 'DC'er--

Kate said...

These sounds super yummy Jen! I'm going to give these a try when my boyfriend gets back in town!
You should try and muffins, they really are delicious, and the thing about muffins is you don't feel as guilty eating more then one like you do with cupcakes!