By 8:15 this morning, I was pulling off forty-nine mini chicken meatballs (yes, I counted) from a hot skillet and putting them in the refrigerator for dinner tonight. Some days, things just align and I start the day ahead of the game. Not very often, but every once in awhile.
When I spied this recipe in the June issue of Redbook magazine, I ripped it right out. It was from Food Network celeb chef Giada De Laurentiis. There are several chefs that I know I can always count on getting a good recipe from. Giada is one, the Barefoot Contessa is another. Emeril too. I just know their recipes work. Every time. And these days, that’s huge. When I saw that this recipe makes between fifty and sixty mini meatballs, I knew it was perfect to make today because I was heading down to visit my sister and the new baby at lunchtime, so I could make, halve and share this one easily.
When I removed them from the skillet, I tried one to make sure that they were worthy for sharing. And then another. Total yum. Moist, juicy and just downright delicious. Just a few simple ingredients mix together to make these mini little meaty treasures. Brown on each side for two minutes and then cook in chicken broth for 5 minutes. For about 15 minutes of your time, you’re rewarded with a nice, easy, healthy dinner that you can feel good about putting on the table. And the mini little size made these perfect for the kids, although truth be told, Nick took one look at them and made a series of disgusted faces. No matter, Madeline ate his share and then some.
But how to serve them? In the article, they were shown plated in a large bowl with fresh cheese sprinkled on top. That is wonderful as an appetizer or for a party, but not so much for dinner. I needed more. And I found it, another new recipe, in the most recent issue of Food Network magazine. But that recipe is a story for another day.
Mini Chicken Meatballs
Recipe courtesy of Giada De Laurentiis, Redbook June 2009
- 1/4 cup(s) plain breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup(s) chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 tablespoon(s) whole milk
- 1 tablespoon(s) ketchup
- 3/4 cup(s) freshly grated Romano cheese
- 3/4 teaspoon(s) salt
- 3/4 teaspoon(s) freshly ground black pepper
- 1 pound(s) ground chicken
- 1/4 cup(s) olive oil
- 1-1/2 cup(s) low-sodium chicken broth
- 1/2 cup(s) chopped fresh basil, for garnish
- 1/2 cup(s) freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for garnish
In a medium bowl, stir together breadcrumbs, parsley, eggs, milk, ketchup, Romano cheese, salt, and pepper. Add the chicken and combine well. Use a melon baller (or a teaspoon measure) to scoop the mixture; roll the seasoned chicken into 3/4-inch mini meatballs.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, add the meatballs and cook without moving until brown on the bottom, about 2 minutes. Turn the meatballs and brown the tops, about 2 minutes longer. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer until the meatballs are cooked through, about 5 minutes. Garnish with chopped fresh basil and Parmesan cheese.