asian turkey meatballs

asian turkey meatballs | via she likes to eat

these little gems were a lovely surprise this week. i was skeptical, them coming – randomly – from the disney family website (i have NO earthly clue how i originally got this recipe, although i think the link was sent to me by a family member). i had read through the ingredients and the instructions and they sounded delicious. and they were. divine. they have all the flavors of a chinese dumpling and the sauce is heavenly.

the meatballs are served best over jasmine rice and a side of the sauce. it’s an easy meal and delightfully yummy.  also, the meatballs and the sauce save pretty well for a few days and are great reheated. oh and kiddos LOVE them. (both of the little shes are in a dipping phase right now – i know you mommies know what i’m talking about – so this was a HIT in the highchair this week.) these also freeze quite well, so they are a good option for make-ahead meals.

*updated march 2016
**to make whole30 friendly, see note at the bottom

asian turkey meatballs
makes about 2 dozen

ingredients

1 lb ground turkey (you can use lean or dark meat)

2 green onion stalks, finely chopped (or snipped with kitchen shears)

1/3 cup finely chopped cilantro

1 tbsp sesame oil

1 tbsp vegetable oil

2 tbsp soy sauce (or you can use liquid aminos)

1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs

1 egg, lightly beaten

1/3 cup ricotta cheese (not skim)

for dipping sauce:

6 tbsp brown sugar

1/2 cup soy sauce (or liquid aminos)

2 tbsp rice vinegar

1″ piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated (or 1/4 tsp ground ginger, heaping)

directions

1. preheat the oven to 400.

2. in a large bowl, mix together turkey, scallions, cilantro, oils, soy sauce, breadcrumbs, egg, and ricotta with your hands, then form meatballs by rolling 2 tablespoon-sized scoops between your palms.

3. arrange on a baking sheet covered with cooking spray or lined with parchment paper and bake for about 25 minutes, until browned on top and cooked through.

4. while the meatballs are in the oven, make the dipping sauce: in a small saucepan, stir the sauce ingredients together over medium low heat until the sugar has dissolved. simmer 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently, until the sauce thickens a bit.

5. serve with jasmine rice + dipping sauce on the side.

**to make this recipe whole 30 friendly, make the following substitutions for the meatballs: sub coconut aminos for the soy sauce, replace panko breadcrumbs with guiltless superfoods’ 7 seed flour or raw almond flour, omit the ricotta cheese. then for the dipping sauce: sub pure date syrup (this one is my favorite and there is no added sugar) instead of brown sugar  (using 5-6 tbsp), and again subbing coconut aminos for the soy sauce. and don’t forget to skip the jasmine rice if you’re on whole30!

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savory cheddar, green onion, + buttermilk muffins

cheddar, green onion, + buttermilk muffins via she likes to eat

these muffins are great with any southwestern-leaning dish, but are the most perfect when paired with chili. they have become my go-to, over cornbread. the Mr loves to crumble them right over the top of a large, steaming bowl of said chili, or he’ll spread a little butter on the inside of a warm muffin and have a few for lunch on a rainy saturday.

adapted from an old issue of cooking light magazine, so they’re basically a super food.

cheddar-green onion buttermilk muffins
makes 24 muffins

ingredients
3 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 cup yellow cornmeal

2 tsp baking powder

1 1/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

3/4 cup plus 1/2 cup shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese, divided

6 tbsp cold butter, cut into pieces

2 1/2 cups buttermilk

1/4 cup chopped green onions

2 tsp minced garlic (about 4 cloves)

2 eggs, lightly beaten

cooking spray or paper muffin cups

directions
1. preheat the oven to 375.

2. combine flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and pepper in a large bowl; whisk to combine. add the butter and cut in with a pastry cutter or large fork, until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. add 3/4 cup of the shredded cheese and cut in a bit to combine.

3. in a separate large bowl, combine buttermilk, onions, garlic, and egg; stir with a whisk. add to flour mixture, stirring with a spatula just until moist.

4. spoon batter into two 12-cup muffin pans coated with cooking spray or paper cups, about 3/4 full each. sprinkle each muffin evenly with a generous pinch of the remaining 1/2 cup shredded cheese. bake for 16 minutes or so, until a wooden toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. best served warm.

rice and corn with cilantro & avocado

this side dish makes me so happy, i’d probably eat it for the main course.
it is light, refreshing, and the perfect thing to go with anything on the grill.
it’s ingredients lean southwestern and mexican, so it goes really well with chips & fresh salsa or a big cheesy plate of enchiladas. i even think it would strike the perfect balance with a burger or a steak.

rice and corn with cilantro & avocado and lemon dressing
8 side-dish servings

ingredients

1 cup long grain white rice

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)

4 tbsp olive oil, divided

1 1/2 cups frozen corn kernels, thawed

1/2 green bell pepper, seeded & chopped (about 3/4 cup)

1/2 yellow bell pepper, seeded & chopped (about 3/4 cup)

1 jalapeño, seeded & chopped

1 cup yellow zucchini, chopped

1 avocado, diced

1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions (about 1 bunch)

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

directions

1. cook 1 cup rice according to package directions (about 12-15 min). meanwhile, whisk lemon juice and 3 tbsp olive oil in a small bowl. season dressing to taste with salt & pepper.

2. heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. add corn, green bell & yellow bell pepper, jalapeño, and zucchini. sprinkle with just a bit of salt & pepper. saute until veggies are just tender, about 6-7 minutes. place in a large bowl.

3. add rice, green onions, cilantro, and dressing; toss to coat and serve. top each serving with diced avocado*.

* this recipe makes a pretty big batch so we had leftovers at the end of the evening. because of this,  i add the avocados in with each serving. otherwise, the avocado will turn brown with the leftovers in the fridge.

enjoy!

recipe adapted via bon appetit