Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Making Meatballs

When I subscribed to Martha Steward Weddings upon the engagement it came with a subscription to Everyday Food ($12 for a year of both). While I don't normally read food magazines, since it was coming to the house I might as well make use of it right? My first issue arrived and I was happy to see there were quite a few recipes I was interested, but decided to start of with couscous and roasted carrots with spiced meatballs. I made a few changes which I'm done my best to outline blow. Enjoy!

carrots (you could buy your own and chop them, but the only thing available at the time at our store was pre cut slices. So I made do.)
1 sweet potato, cut into 2-inch pieces
3 or 4 red skinned potatoes, cut into 2-inch pieces
Several sprigs of rosemary
3 or 4 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil
coarse salt & ground pepper
1 lbs ground beef chuck (85% lean)
Spices (ground cumin, ground coriander, cayenne pepper, onion power, garlic power, tony's chachere's, cinnamon - amount to taste)
1 tbls chopped cilantro
2 bunches green onions (1 minced, 1 thinly slice)
1 large egg
1 cup couscous
1/2 cup sliced almonds

1. Preheat the oven to 450*. Toss vegetables with olive oil, salt, pepper, rosemary and garlic. Roast until tender, around 40 minutes, tossing every 10 minutes.
(The original recipe just called for carrots, but the boy asked for potatoes so I threw those in as well. The garlic and rosemary were on me. The recipe actually said to roast for 20 minutes, but I did for around 40 and still felt the carrots could have gone for another few minutes.)
Ready for the Oven
2. In a medium bowl combine beef, spices, cilantro, minced green onion, and egg; season with salt. With hands gently mix and combine to form meatballs. In a large skillet heat 1 tbsp oil over medium-high. Cook all meatballs until browned on all sides, about 8 minutes total. Add 1/4 cup water, cover, and reduce heat to low. Cook until meatballs are just cooked through, 5 minutes. (The original recipe just called for cumin, coriander, cayenne, and cinnamon but clearly I added a few of my own, and added a little more than their suggested amounts. That's why I have them listed as too taste. But I think my mix turned out pretty good. Also the original recipe called for scallions, but I made do with green onions instead.)
Spiced Meatballs
3. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, bring 1 cup of water to a boil. Stir in couscous and sliced green onions and season with salt and pepper. Cover, remove pan from heat, and let stand 5 minutes. Fluff couscous with a fork and stir in almonds and pesto. Serve meatballs and any pan juices with vegetables and couscous. (Again used green onions to stand in for scallions. You were supposed to add them with the almonds, but mine got put in at the start, but still tasted fine. The pesto I picked up from this post from Amber. And they recommend serving with lemon wedges, but that didn't happen this time.)
The total time for this recipe is supposed to take 35 minutes, but it probably took me a little over an hour. I wind up getting so overwhelmed trying to make sure every thing's happening at once that it can be a little difficult. But it was so nice when I finally got to the point that both the couscous and meatballs were finishing cooking at the same time. (The veggies were already out of the oven at this point.) As for the meatballs, like Sarah in this post I was a little scared I was going to under cook them, so probably let them go a little longer than they needed. It was actually my first time cooking meatballs on my own. Every other time the boy's been there to actually cook them, but since he was at work at the time it was just me.
Spiced Meatballs
But overall I think the meal came together really good. And now that I've finally cooked both couscous and meatballs, I have a feeling they'll be back again in my future!


  1. Yum! that looks really, really good. I have never made meatballs but it is something I would like to try to do.

  2. looks so yummy! I LOVE meatballs!