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Spicy Meatballs

While I am more of a potato than pasta girl, I still like a spicy tomato sauce with meatballs. You can really mix and match and ground protein preferred for meatballs; however I get a lot of flavor out of ground lamb or grass fed beef. And of course, a red sauce is a great place to add in (or hide) other great vegetables like mushrooms and greens like spinach or kale. Finely chop some greens to add to the meatballs for another way to amp up your vegetable consumption. 

In addition to the optional “greens” in the meatballs, I like to cook kale separately in a dry pan with seasoning and a little oil to sort of toast and wilt it which makes a nice bed for the meatballs and sauce. These meatballs can also be transformed into a nice sub, or added to a potato boat for a version of a stuffed potato.

If you are working to stock up a variety of meals that do well reheated and are easy to batch cook, this is also a great dish to add to your freezer collection. Simply double the recipe and stock your fridge or freezer with meals for the week or in the weeks to come. 

Check out the recipe below!

Serves 4-5

Meatballs Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 tbsp dried parsley
  • 1/2 tbsp salt
  • 1/2 tbsp coarse black pepper
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes or cayenne (optional)
  • 4 gloves of pressed garlic or 2 tbsp of minced garlic 

Meat sauce Ingredients:

  • 1 14.5 can of tomato sauce
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 2 cups fresh kale
  • 12 oz chopped mushroom
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 6 cloves of pressed garlic or 3 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp coarse black pepper
  • 1/2 tbsp sea salt
  • 1 tbsp olive or avocado oil

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with foil.
  2. In a medium bowl, add ground meat, seasonings and egg. Use a garlic press to crush fresh garlic or add in minced. Sprinkle in breadcrumbs.
  3. Mix well and roll 16 medium balls and space evenly on baking sheet. Wash hands, put the meatballs in the oven and set timer for 20 minutes. 
  4. Dice onion and chop mushrooms to preferred size and in a large pan, add onions and mushrooms with oil over medium heat. Season lightly with salt and pepper and brown. 
  5. Add splashes of water to start to caramelize the onions and mushrooms and prevent sticking. Cook for 5-7 minutes.
  6. Add in tomato sauce and once fill can with water or stock (optional) and stir with a spoon to get any extra bits of sauce before adding to the pan. 
  7. Use garlic press to add in garlic or add minced amount. Add in seasonings and mix well. Simmer on medium low heat.
  8. Once meatballs timer goes off, remove them from the oven and carefully scoop them from the pan and into the sauce, one at a time.
  9. Cook for an additional 5-10 minutes on low heat.
  10. Enjoy.
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Easy Pork Tenderloin

Since we are still in season of fickle cold weather, I like to eat flavorful comfort. This is definitely one such dish that delivers both and freezes well for future meals.

Pork tenderloin is easy to prepare and a great protein for batch cooking where you can cook multiple tenderloins at the same time, all seasoned differently if you’d like. Tenderloin can be seared and roasted simply with fresh garlic, herb crusted or set in a sweet and savory glaze. I really love the flavors of garlic, rosemary with a balsamic glaze and decided to go that route with the tenderloin. I paired it with roasted sweet potatoes and some sautéed kale and mushrooms. Check out the tenderloin recipe below.

Serves 6-8

Ingredients:

2 tenderloin (~1 lb each)

2 tbsp minced or fresh pressed garlic

1 tbsp dried rosemary

2 tbsp garlic powder

2 tbsp onion powder 

2 tbsp coarse black pepper

3/4 tbsp sea salt

1 tbsp avocado or olive oil

Glaze: (optional)

3 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 1/2 tbsp honey

1 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place a large pan over medium high heat and add oil.
  2. Open tenderloin and pat dry with a paper towel. Sprinkle the onion and garlic powders, salt and pepper on one side of the tenderloin and add to pan seasoned side down. Season the other side and let cook for 3 minutes per side or until lightly browned.
  3. While the tenderloin browns, add vinegar and honey to a small bowl and mix until honey devolves. Add salt, pepper and dried rosemary.
  4. Remove the pan from the heat and transfer to an oven safe dish. 
  5. Top with freshly pressed garlic or minced garlic and spread evenly with a fork. Pour on glaze and cover with foil before placing in the oven. 
  6. Bake for 15 minutes with foil and another 10 uncovered.
  7. Remove from the oven and let it rest for 10 minutes before cutting.
  8. Enjoy! 

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Rosemary Turkey Hash

With this snap of cold weather, I wanted a hearty and comforting dish and decided on rosemary turkey hash. I put a twist on one of my favorite potato hash dishes for a quick and easy meal to ward off the cold, while still giving balance.

As a southern gal, I love all types of greens and in this hash I used collards but you can certainly change it up with kale or even spin if if preferred. Check out the recipe below.

Ingredients:

2 cups of diced sweet potato (~2 medium)

1 cup sweet yellow onion

3 gloves minced garlic

2 cups thinly sliced collard greens

1 lb ground turkey

1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

1/2 tbsp dried rosemary

1 tbsp onion powder

1 tbsp garlic powder

Salt and coarse black pepper to taste

1 cup of water 

1 tsp oil

Directions:

  1. Rinse greens and remove stems. Cut large leaves in half longwise. Stack, then slice thinly.
  2. Add to a medium pot or pan with half the water and the apple cider vinegar. Top it with a lid and bring to a boil.
  3. While that boils, rinse and slice potatoes in half. Cut into strips and then cubes.
  4. Add potatoes and the rest of the water. Season with half of the seasoning and let simmer for 10 minutes. 
  5. While that cooks, diced onion and mince the garlic. 
  6. Remove greens and potatoes into a bowl.
  7. Add onion, garlic, oil and ground turkey to the pan to brown. Use the remainder of the seasoning and stir well. 
  8. Once cooked, add the potatoes and greens back in and stir well.
  9. Let simmer on low heat for 5 minutes.
  10. Enjoy.