It’s funny how cravings work – we usually crave foods we’re mildly addicted to, which are also usually the foods we eat a lot of. It’s like a perfect linear relationship (shout out to Math 7!) – the x and the y-axis increasing at the same rate and all that. So when we wean our taste buds & tummies off of the sweet stuff (or maybe for you it’s the salty stuff), eventually we don’t really crave it.
But it’s not like the occasional indulgence will cause you to go off the rails – you just gotta be mindful about it.
So in the spirit of good food and in celebration of the completion of the Eat Clean Challenge – I give you: Turkey Ricotta Meatballs.
- ½ cup ricotta cheese
- 2 Tbsp milk
- 1/3 cup grated parmesan
- 1 egg, beaten
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tsp fennel seeds
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- ½ tsp red pepper flakes
- ½ tsp sea salt
- ½ tsp fresh ground pepper
- ½ cup minced red onion
- ¼ cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 2 pieces whole grain bread (crust removed) torn into little pieces
- 1 lb ground organic turkey (not fat-free)
- 1 (28oz) can of organic crushed tomatoes
- ¼ cup red wine
- 2 Tbsp melted unsalted butter
- ½ tsp salt
- Chopped fresh parsley and basil, for garnish
- In a large bowl, mix together the ricotta, milk, parmesan, egg and garlic – stirring to combine well.
- Put fennel seeds, oregano, red pepper flakes and sea salt into a little pile on your cutting board – chopping roughly at the mix to smash up the fennel seeds. Then add the spice mix, pepper, onion and parsley to the ricotta mixture and stir to combine.
- Toss the ripped up bread bits into the ricotta mixture and stir to cover the bread. Let the mixture sit for about 10 minutes to saturate the bread. Next, add the turkey and fold the mixture all together to incorporate it well without over-mixing it. Let everything sit for about 30 minutes.
- Pre-heat the oven (at 400F) while the meatball mix sits and prep the roasting pan by coating the bottom with coconut or olive oil.
- Once the meat mixture has sat, roll them into little balls (about 1½ inches in diameter) and place in the pan with a little space between each. Pop the pan into the oven and bake for an initial 15 minutes.
- While the meatballs are baking, combine the canned tomatoes with wine, melted butter and sea salt. Stir to combine. Once the initial 15 minutes is up, remove meatballs from the oven and cover with tomato mixture. Cover the tray in tin foil, turn the heat down (to 325F) and pop back into the oven to bake for 20 to 25 minutes.
- Once done, serve over pasta or quinoa with a scoop of sauce, some parmesan and chopped fresh herbs.
Tweaked from Sprouted Kitchen cookbook Bowl + Spoon