I know. You’re like, “You’ve been gone for a year and all you have for me is this incredibly frumpy meatball recipe?” I feel you. But let me say, I’m in my (hopefully) last few weeks of being pregnant (It’s our first. It’s a girl. Yes, I’ll write more about this.) and went DEFCON 2 in the kitchen prepping meals for the freezer, in preparation for what I’m imagining will be a baby-pocalypse, where I’ll be a shut-in for weeks on end. I’m terrified.
So out of my individually packaged and labeled rage came what I hope is going to be the most perfect-est easy to re-heat, complete meal. Lean protein, fat, carbs, and something green–because I guess I’m a grown up now.
Makes ~6 servings
- 2 lbs ground turkey
- 1 c cooked rice
- ~1 c finely chopped broccoli florets
- 1/2 c shredded chedda’ cheese
- 1 T hot sauce
- 1 t chicken base (see below)
- 1 egg
- s&p, to taste
Preheat your oven to 400°F.
Start by sauteeing your finely chopped broccoli florets in a bit of butter or olive oil (add some salt and pepper here), until they’ve browned and look crispy. Words of warning: do not walk too far away from this, the broccoli will turn from roasty, brown to nasty, black in 30 seconds.
Meanwhile, lightly grease a large cookie sheet (that has edges) or 2 medium Pyrex-type casserole dishes.
In a large bowl, combine the ground turkey, cooked (not raw!) rice, browned broccoli, cheddar, hot sauce, chicken base, the egg, and salt and pepper. Mix gently with a fork. I think your hands compacts the meat too much.
Use a cookie scooper to portion out evenly sized meatballs into your prepared pans. Bake until cooked through, about 20-25 minutes.
I portioned these 6 at a time into freezer bags, pressed out the air, and laid them flat into the freezer, making sure they weren’t touching each other, so they’d be easier to re-heat.
What is chicken base?
It’s like buying 10 quarts of chicken stock, but without the water added to it already. And instead of paying $4 per quart, you pay about $.80 and add your own water. And beyond using it like stock, like in this recipe, it adds flavor to whatever you’re making.
I use Better than Bouillon when I don’t need the base to dissolve (like this recipe, because the texture is liquidy), and More than Gourmet (the texture is like extra hard jello) for when what I’m making will come in contact with heat; like soups, stovetop sautées, and stews.
And of course there are other base/reduction variations out there. I just keep chicken and beef on hand, but I bet mushroom is the shizzzz.