Tuscan Meatballs

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These have to be my favourite meatballs. They have everything I love. Meat and cheese (lots of melting cheese) and mediterranean flavours! Summer flavours, yet comforting enough to serve all year round. And really, does it have to be cold weather to eat melted cheese??? I think NOT.

This dish is actually lighter than you might think. I drain off all the fat from the meatballs after frying them. The lemon zest lifts the whole thing up, and the fresh herbs add freshness. All round a great dish. Serve over pasta, with french bread, in a sandwich or make small ones and serve as an appetizer.


Serves 6

INGREDIENTS:

Sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, peeled and finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 14-oz cans Italian-style diced tomatoes
  • 1 glass dry white wine (or wing it)
  • a tiny grating of lemon zest, about 1/4 teaspoon
  • a pinch of sugar or agave syrup
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup cream, I use half-and-half
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley
  • 1 tablespoon minced basil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano

Meatballs:

  • 1-1/4 pounds lean ground beef
  • 1/2 medium onion, peeled and finely diced
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and grated
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

Topping:

6 oz. fresh mozzarella
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon  fresh oregano

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INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. In a large skillet melt the olive oil over medium heat. Add the diced onion and cook about 3 minutes . Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring constantly, about 30 seconds until it starts to soften, Add the tomato paste. Stir in the sugar. Add the wine. Add the lemon zest.
  2. Add the canned tomatoes and salt and pepper to taste. Add the herbs. Reduce heat to a simmer and let it cook while you prep the meatballs.
  3. In a food processor, pulse the onion until it is finely diced. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse until well combined. Roll the mix into meatballs about the size of golf balls.
  4. Heat a large frying pan and add the meatballs to the dry (non stick) pan and cook for 15 minutes – it’s okay if they aren’t cooked quite all the way through. Remove from heat and drain off all the fat in a collander!!!
  5. Place the meatballs in an oven proof dish.
  6. Preheat the oven to 220° C / 425° F.
  7. Add the sauce to the meatballs, add the cream. Stir.
  8. Top with mozzarella and parmesan cheese.
  9. Place in the oven to bake until the cheese on top is bubbling and the meatballs are cooked through, about 20 minutes.
  10. Garnish with the fresh oregano.

Enjoy!

Myra XO

 

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Greek Steak Souvlaki5

Greek Steak Souvlaki with Feta and Cucumber Pomegranate salsa.

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I have this thing for Greece and all things greek food related.  Those who follow my blog might know that I spent all my childhood holidays there. We went there a few times a year and even made friends and played with local kids. My parents hung out with locals to and we used to go out to dinner with them or at their homes.

And when you hang out with locals you really get the best food ever. The real deal is in the homes of the Greek.

Don’t be put off by the length of the ingredients list!  The marinade for the beef is so amazing that you can use it on any meat and also great for when you’re having a Bbq. The red wine vinegar is what makes it really greek to me, it’s what they use over there, not lemon juice like some may expect, not in this dish at least.

The smell when the beef is cooking is incredible – you can really smell the oregano and it takes you to Greece straight away. If you ever go to Greece make sure to bring back some Oregano, they sell it dried in bushes and it’s the best you’ll ever find.

Serves: 4 – 6


INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 lb / 1 kg beef (steak), thinly sliced

Marinade

  • 2 large garlic cloves, peeled and grated
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1½ tbsp dried oregano
  • a pinch of cinnamon
  • a pinch of ground cloves
  • a pinch of dry mint
  • 1/2 tsp dry chili flakes
  • salt and pepper

Cucumber Pomegranate Salsa:

  • 1 large beef  tomato, deseeded and diced
  • 1  cucumber, peeled, deseeded and diced
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate arils
  • ½ red spanish onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • a pinch of sugar
  • salt and pepper
  • a drizzle of olive oil
  • a little squeeze of lemon juice
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley leaves
  • 1/2 tsp.dry mint
  • 1/2 tsp. dry oregano

To serve:

  • 4 – 6 Tortillas or pitas
  • extra lettuce
  • more Feta to crumble on top

Greek Steak Souvlaki

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INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Place the Marinade ingredients and the beef in a ziplock bag and massage to mix. Marinate for at least 2 hours or up to 6. Remove from marinade and skewer on to wooden or metal pins alternating with pepper and onion pieces.

Salsa

  1. Combine ingredients in a bowl.

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Cook Beef

  1. Heat a griddle pan over high heat.
  2. Cook the skewers on high for a few minutes until crispy and brown then turn them over and cook for an other two minutes.
  3. Remove and serve straight away.

Assemble:

  1. Get a tortilla or pita and place it on a piece of parchment paper or a plate.
  2. Place onions and lettuce down the middle if desired.
  3. Place some Beef down the middle and then top with salsa and feta.

Enjoy!

Myra XO

Greek Steak Souvlaki

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Bulgogi Beef Tacos

Beef Bulgogi Soft Tacos with 5 minute Kimchi and lime Aioli

Bulgogi Beef Tacos

Bulgogi Beef Tacos

These tacos are going to make you very happy, I promise. Don’t let the long list of ingredients turn you off, it is really as simple as can be. The Kimchi for instance is done in minutes rather than days, marinating. Obviously it is not fermented like the real deal, but just as tasty I assure you.

I pan fry the Bulgogi so it’s nice and quick and accessable to everyone. Then rolled in simple soft tacos or wraps, because it’s just so easy and fun. I like all things wrapped, not just food (think presents!) I am not the kind of person who has ever said, Oh, you shouldn’t have… seriously. Who says that, and who ever means it????  Anyway….moving on….

So, yes, this is made in  a flash really. Just read it through, start with the marinade for the bulgogi, put it in the fridge (maybe do it in the morning if you have time). Then make the Kimchi. Stir together the lime aioli and leave the rest for later. Then at dinner time it’s a flash to get on the table. But don’t fret if you don’t have time to marinate it all day, even an hour  gives off a lot of flavour. Also I leave the pear sliced and not chopped or grated (like in some recipes) because I love the flavour and texture when it’s cooked together with the beef.

Bulgogi Beef Tacos

 

 

Refined sugar free 

Gluten free  

 


Serves 4

INGREDIENTS BEEF BULGOGI TACOS:

  • Kimchi
  • Beef Bulgogi
  • Lime Garlic Aioli
  • 2 Avocados
  • 4 – 8 (gluten free) Tortillas or soft Tacos depending on size
  • 1 – 2 extra lime for serving
  • some radishes for serving (optional, just for color)

 

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Ingredients 5 minute Kimchi:

  • 4 cups shredded Napa cabbage
  • 2  tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 2 tsp.  salt
  • 2 cloves of  garlic grated
  • 1 tbsp. grated ginger
  • 1 tbsp. honey or coconut sugar
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons Korean red pepper flakes (gochugaru) or 1 tablespoon sambal oelek
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and cut into match sticks
  • 8 ounces daikon or radishes, peeled and cut into match sticks

Instructions:

Place  all the ingredients for the Kimchi in a bowl and scrunch together with your hands, let marinate while you prepare the rest.

INGREDIENTS BEEF BULGOGI:

  • 1 pear, peeled and sliced very thin
  • 1 onion, peeled and sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and grated
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce or (gluten free) Tamari
  • 2 -3  teaspoon or hot sauce or sambal oelek
  • 1 tablespoon grated peeled ginger
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 pound steak, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided

Instructions:

  1. Combine pear, onion, garlic, soy sauce, hot sauce, ginger, sugar, and sesame oil in a large resealable plastic bag or medium bowl.
  2. Using a sharp knife, slice meat into very thin strips.
  3. Add to marinade, seal bag, and squish everything around until the meat is coated. Let sit at room temperature 30 minutes, or chill up to 8 hours.
  4. Heat 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high until oil is shimmering. Remove half of meat from marinade, letting excess drip back into bag  and cook in a single layer without moving until lightly browned, about 1 minute. Toss meat and continue to cook, tossing occasionally, until cooked through and crisp at edges, about 3 minutes.
  5. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with remaining 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil, remaining meat.

 

Bulgogi Beef Tacos

Bulgogi Beef Tacos

INGREDIENTS LIME AÏOLI:

  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1/4 cup Crème Fraîche
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp. hot sauce
  • 1 tsp. dry garlic powder or granules, or 1 clove garlic peeled and grated (I prefere dry in this case)
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • salt and black pepper to taste

Instructions:

Mix all the ingredients for the Aioli in a small bowl and set aside until ready to use.

To assemble the Beef Bulgogi tacos, place a taco on a plate or a wooden board. Put some Kimchi on the taco first, then top with Beef Bulgogi, tuck in a few slices of Avocado and top with some of the creamy Lime Aioli. Eat straight away.

Enjoy!

Myra XO

 

Bulgogi Beef Tacos

 

If you try this recipe let me know! Leave a comment below and don’t forget to snap a pic and tag it #thecookingspoonblog on instagram! You’ll make my day. ♥

 

Gaucho Steak Chimichurri

 

Let’s have a Steak Dinner!

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So Argentinian it is……

This Argentinian Steak Chimichurri recipe is so simple to make, especially if you’re using a food processor. All you have to do really is blend the sauce ingredients and grill the steak and you’ve got dinner set.  TADAAAA!

And just because it’s simple doesn’t mean you can’t serve it to guests. You could make a huge platter out of it like I did, served with lots of grilled vegetables, spiralized zucchini and crusty bread  and the Chimichurri sauce of course,  and you’ve got yourself a meal fit for a king.

I was lucky enough to have some left overs the other day when we ate this, and they made a great salad the next day with the sauce.

There are many variations on  Chimichurri sauce, some people like to include oregano, but I prefer this version with the cilantro and some chives.

 

Really important;

⇒ take the steak out of the refrigerator on time,  about 20 – 30 minutes                                      before cooking.

⇒ Have a really HOT griddle pan ready.

⇒ Let the meat rest before slicing.

 

Gluten free  √

Dairy free  √

Ref. sugar free  √

Egg free √

 

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Serves 4


INGREDIENTS:

Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup lightly packed chopped Italian parsley
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed chopped cilantro
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons chopped chives
  • 3/4 cup good quality virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar, or apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. honey

Steak:

  • Olive oil to baste
  • 2 1/2 pounds rib-eye, New York strip, or sirloin steak, 1 1/2 inches thick
  • Salt & Pepper

Vegetables:

  • 1 tbsp. green olives without stone, sliced
  • 4 tsp. olive oil
  • 2 courgette, ends removed
  • 1 tbsp. pine nuts, toasted
  • 2 red bell peppers, trimmed and cut into strips
  • 1 large onion, peeled and cut into thin wedges
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced

 

 

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Method;

Place all chimichurri sauce ingredients in a blender or food processor and pulse until well chopped, but not pureed. Reserve.

In a large frying pan heat half the olive oil, add the peppers and onions and cook on medium heat for five minutes, until browned and tender but still with bite.

Meanwhile spiralize the courgettes or cut into thin strips if you don’t have a spiralizer.

Remove the peppers and onions from the heat and transfer to a large serving dish, placing them on one side of the dish / platter or wooden board.

Add the courgette to the pan, season with salt and pepper and fry on medium high heat for about five minutes.

When cooked transfer to the serving dish and place them alongside the peppers and onions.

Sprinkle over the olives and pine nuts.

Rub the steaks with some oil. Season well with salt and pepper

Place the steak directly on a hot griddle and grill for about two minutes on each side. This depends on the thickness of the steak. Remove the steak from the grill and let rest under tented foil for five minutes before slicing in long strips.

Place the steak next to the peppers and onions, and the courgette.

Serve with the Chimichurri sauce and plenty of french baguette to mop up the juices.

Enjoy!

Myra XO

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If you try this recipe let me know! Leave a comment below and don’t forget to snap a pic and tag it #thecookingspoonblog on instagram! You’ll make my day. ♥

Grilled Cheese Meatballs in Onion Sauce

 

You know how sometimes you just can’t decide between two recipes….

Just make them both… in one!

 

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Ok, so I was in the mood for Onion Soup, that’s how it all started.

But then I had a pound of Beef in the fridge that I had to use up,  I was going to make meatballs which I love at any given moment or even just to have in the freezer, but this Onion Soup kept gnawing at my brain. Then it hit me, why not just put the two together?

Seriously, the best thing that happened to meatballs, drowning in caramelized golden onion sauce, topped with aged cheese and grilled to perfection.

ooooooh my oh my…

I just remembered that when we first went to Spain on a holiday , I must have been around seven or eight, we used to eat out all the time and my parent became friends with the owners of our favourite restaurant. I somehow made it into the kitchen because I wanted to help (no surprise there).

When I think about it now, I’m surprised I was allowed. My parents must have been really good costumers.

The lady in the kitchen, Anne,  was french and taught me how to slice onions and told me that if I didn’t want to cry I had to put the onion peel on my head the whole time. So I did.

I believed her of course, and kept doing this until I was at least sixteen, seriously, what was I thinking???

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Grilled Cheese Meatballs in Onion Sauce

 

Gluten free option

Dairy free

Ref. sugar free

 

Serves: 4


INGREDIENTS:

 

Cheddar , gouda,  Asiago,   fontina, Gruyère, Havarti, Monterey Jack are all great cheeses for melting and grilling. Make sure they are at room temerature before hand to get the best result.

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METHOD:

Pre heat the oven to 220° C / 425° F

For the meatballs, place all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix with your hands. Don’t overmix. Form 8 meatballs.

Put them in a oiled oven dish and place in the middle of the oven. Bake for about 17 minutes. I use a cast iron skillet but a baking dish is fine too.

Meanwhile heat a large frying pan and glaze the onions on medium low heat in the two tablespoons of olive oil, add a pinch of salt. Partially cover and let cook for about 20 minutes. Stirring now and again. After the 20 minutes add one tablespoon of coconut sugar and stir around until in begins to caramelize and gets a deep golden color.

Add the two tablespoons of flour and again stir until this too gets a golden color.

Gently add the beef stock and stir to completely combine. Let simmer for 10 minutes.

When the meatballs are cooked take them out of the oven and carefully pour over all the onion sauce.

Set the oven to grilling.

Cover the meatballs and onions with the grated cheese and place back in to oven. Grill for about 5 – 7 minutes until golden brown and bubbling.

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Enjoy!

Myra. XO 

 

 

If you try this recipe let me know! Leave a comment below and don’t forget to snap a pic and tag it #thecookingspoonblog on instagram! You’ll make my day. ♥

Not quite what you’re looking for? How about Rustic Chicken meatball, Beans and Tomato Stew with Courgette   or maybe a  Moroccan Meatballs with Quinoa

Stuffed Beef Steaks, Rouladen

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An other great thing about Fall is that since its raining all the time, I don’t feel the need to go outside as much. Which gives me plenty of time to do things indoors, even turning on the oven is a pleasure now, when I think about it, only 8 weeks ago we were going thru a heat wave here in the Netherlands, it’s just so crazy. I had to come up with all these cold dinners to avoid cooking and now we’re piling on layers of clothing.

I am also really excited about december coming up. In december it’s my daughter’s birthday, so that’s a party right there, then there’s Saint Nicholas (Sinterklaas) on the fifth of december, He’s a holy man who comes in from Spain on a boat and gives presents to all the kids in NL. He dresses similar to Santa but with a taller hat. He gives out candy and pepernoten, which is like a very tiny hard gingerbread cookie. Where they come up with this stuff is a mystery to me. I never really celebrated Sinterklaas since my dad was Scottish and we really didn’t grow up much in NL. But now back here there’s really no way around it. I kind of like it though.

I mean the other day I was in town, and there were tons of people everywhere,  over-excited children shouting, singing and crying all at the same time,  and there he was right in front of me, Sinterklaas on his white horse Amerigo. Scared the living daylights out of me, I just hadn’t expected to see him yet but apparently he had arrived that morning. So it’s official, it’s holiday season. A whole month of eating delicious festive food. YES.

And although I do  tried to postpone the festive eating for as long as I can, (because when I start indulging I know it will be until New Years day). I do try to cook things a little more special than ussual without going overboard. So, here I’ve got a really good recipe that is quite festive, not difficult or expensive either. You can easily double the recipe and freeze half for an other day.

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Cane Sugar Free   Egg Free   Gluten Free   

Serves 8

Ingredients;

8 slices beef topside, top round steak or flank (1/4 inch thick and 4 ounces each)

3 tbsp. pistachio nuts, chopped fine

1 tbsp olive oil

2 garlic cloves, peeled and grated

2 tbsp. capers, drained

1 tbsp. minced parsley

salt and pepper

16 slices smoked bacon

8 large slices provolone

24 Basil leafs

1 large onion, cut into thin wedges

2 large pickles cut into Julienne

 


1 tablespoons olive oil

1 cups beef broth

1 glass white wine (or red)

2 tbsp. pickle juice

1 tbsp. tomato paste

1 tbsp. corn starch

1/2 cup water

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Method; 

Chop garlic and capers very fine and combine with the one tablespoon of olive oil, the parsley and the pistachio nuts. Spread on each slice of steak; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place 2 bacon strips, three basil leafs and the cheese on top. Then add and a few onion wedges and pickles on each slice; roll up; secure with toothpicks, or metal skewers.

Heat a large skillet and brown the brown beef in the remaining tablespoon of olive oil until golden brown on all sides. Add the tomato paste, fry a minute or so and add the beef broth, pickle juice and wine.  Bring to a boil. Turn the heat to low, just simmering and cover with a lid. Cook gently for an hour and a half.

Towards the end of cooking, remove the beef from the pan and make a mixture of the corn starch and the water. Add to the pan to thicken the sauce, do not add it all at once, but see how it thickens first. Add more if necessary. Return the beef rouladen to the pan and cook for a few more minutes.

Before serving remove the toothpicks. Sprinkle with parsley to serve.

Enjoy!

Myra XO

 

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If you try this recipe let me know! Leave a comment below and don’t forget to snap a pic and tag it #thecookingspoon on instagram! You’ll make my day.

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Mexican Pulled Beef with Jalapeño Cheddar Corn Bread

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I feel like putting on a big sweater and pulling the sleeves over my hands while I eat a bowl of Chili…..

I had been walking around with this image in my head for a while and since the temperatures are dropping here in NL, I’ve made that vision finally come true. I wanted something different from the classic “chili con carne”, and since the beef in this region is outstanding I thought I’d make pulled beef instead, with a mexican twist.

And since “twist” is my middle name, I’ve made a different kind of Cornbread to go with it. One with softness and texture at the same time, some cheese for extra flavour and a tiny Jalapeño kick, and I say tiny because I have only used half a Jalapeño. I still wanted to be able to eat the chili at a reasonable speed.

mexican-beef

 

Cane Sugar Free  Dairy Free   Egg Free   Gluten Free   

Ingredients Chili;

3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

2.5 lbs. boneless beef chuck roast, trimmed and cut into 2 thick slices

1 tsp. Himalayan salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 tbsp. All Purpose Unbleached Flour

2 medium onions, peeled and chopped fine

3  garlic cloves, peeled and grated

2 tbsp. Unsweetened Cocoa (this is a must)

2 tbsp. ground Cumin

2 tbsp. sweet smoked paprika

¼ cup tomato paste

2 Tablespoon fresh oregano leafs or 2 teaspoon dried

1/2 tsp. dried Thyme

1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper, or to taste

1/4 C. Chopped Coriander

1 (15-ounce) cans dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes

2 C. beef stock

1-2 tbsp. Liquid Smoke

1 – 2 tsp. chopped chipotle (depending on how hot you like it)

1 tbsp. coconut sugar or sweetener of choice

1/2 cinnamon stick

2 bay leaves

2 tbsp. fresh Coriander leafs

Toppings; scallions, avocado chunks, sour cream, cheddar cheese, fried onion rings

 

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Method;

Turn on your slow cooker, set to high.

Meanwhile heat a large frying pan and add 3 tbsp. of oil. Season the beef with the salt and pepper and toss with the flour. Sear the beef on both sides and brown until quite dark. Transfer to the slow cooker

Next fry the onions in the pan with the remaining oil until golden add the garlic and cook for an other minute. Transfer to the slow cooker.

Add the remaining ingredients to the slow cooker, except the beans and Coriander leafs

Cook on high for 4 hours. After three hours add the beans. The cooking time depends on your slow cooker and the quality of the beef. So just check by pulling away a piece of beef with a fork. If it loosens easily transfer the beef to a cutting board or large platter. Leaving the beans in the pot. Pull the beef apart into chunky bits and shreds with two forks. Return to slow cooker. Heat thoroughly again for about half an hour  until ready to serve. Sprinkle generously with fresh Coriander leafs. Serve with Pumpkin Corn Bread and lots of toppings.

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Ingredients Jalapeño Cheddar Corn Bread;

1 C. corn meal

1 C. Spelt Flour

2 tsp. Baking Powder

1 tsp. dried Onion Powder

1/2 tsp.

1/2 tsp Baking Soda

1 tbsp. honey

1/2 C. corn kernels form a can, drained

1/2 C. Cheddar cheese, grated

3/4 C. unsweetened plain yoghurt (or soy)

1/2 C of milk (or unsweetened soy) + 1 tbsp.

2 large eggs at room temperature

1/2 Jalapeño, sliced and deseeded

3 tbsp. olive oil

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Method;

Pre heat the oven to 425° F / 220° C

Put an 8″ cast iron skillet in the oven too to pre heat

In a bowl mix all the dry ingredients and stir to mix. Add the wet ingredients and stir to combine.

Remove the cast iron skillet from the oven with an oven mitt! Oil spray generously and pour the cornbread batter in the skillet.

Place on a rack in the middle of the oven and bake from 20-25 min.

 

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Maybe get some Mexican beer to go with it!

Not quite what you’re looking for? How about Cajun Jumbo Shrimp Tacos with Corn, a Peach & Koriander Salsa and Roasted Pepper Aïoli

Swedish Meatballs

Swedish Meatballs with Cranberry Tangerine sauce

 

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…Svenska Köttbullar.

Swedish is such a beautiful language. Not that I understand a word of it but it just sounds so wonderful.  I only know three words in Swedish,  Svenska, Köttbullar and Ikea.

The first time I ate Swedish meatballs was actually in New York. It was truely love at first bite.

A friend was having them for lunch and I just couldn’t believe how good they were. I’ve been making them for a long time now and they never bore me. That creamy sauce and the hint of Dill is just perfect. I always make the cranberry sauce with it too since I can’t eat the meatballs without it. Originally it is served with a Lingonberry jam, but we don’t have them here. The cranberry is related to the Lingonberry, known also as the mountain cranberry, so that’s good enough for me.

Either way all berries are very healthy so I’m making cranberry sauce to go with the meatballs.

 

 

Serves: 4

Ingredients Meatballs;

1 lb. ground beef

1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped

1 tbsp. Butter

1/2 C. fresh bread crumbs

2 tbsp. milk

1 tbsp.  parsley, chopped

1 tbsp. dill, chopped

¼ teaspoon ground Allspice

¼ teaspoon ground Nutmeg

½ teaspoon Garlic Powder

2 tsp.  Worcestershire Sauce

1 tsp. Dijon Mustard

fresh ground Pepper

½ teaspoon Pink Himalayan Salt

1 egg yolk

1 tbsp. Olive Oil + 1 tbsp. butter

Sauce;

2 tbsp. butter

2 tbsp. All Purpose Flour

1 1/2 C. Beef stock, from a cube is fine

1/2 C. full fat Crème fraîche mixed with 1 tsp. corn starch *see note below

1 – 2 tbsp. chopped Dill

salt and pepper to taste

 

 Swedish meatballs with Cranberry Tangerine sauce

Method;

First start by gently cooking the onion in 1 tablespoon of butter over medium heat until translucent, about five minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.

In a bowl soak the bread crumbs in the two tablespoons of milk. Add the ground beef, parsley, dill, allspice, nutmeg, onion, garlic powder, pepper, salt and egg yolk. Mix until combined.

Roll into small meatballs, about the size of a golf ball.  In a large skillet heat olive oil and 1 Tablespoon butter. Add the meatballs and cook turning continuously until brown on each side and cooked throughout. Transfer to a plate and cover with foil.

For the sauce add the butter and flour to skillet and whisk until it turns brown. Slowly stir in beef broth,  bring to a simmer until sauce starts to thicken. Add the crème fraîche . Bring to a very low simmer and add the meatballs back to the pan and heat thru. Sprinkle over fresh chopped Dill. I like a lot of dill but use as much as you like.

Serve over egg noodles, rice or french fries. Serve with the Cranberry sauce.

*Note: crème fraîche can curdle especially the low fat kind so you need to use full fat, this prevents the proteins from clinging to each other when heated, resulting in a curdled mess. Also the corn starch acts as an extra prevention and keeps everything together.

Cranberry Tangerine Sauce;

1/2 C. fresh tangerine juice

3/4 C. Organic Cane Sugar

cinnamon stick

12 ounces whole cranberries

Method;

In a medium saucepan, combine in the juice, the cranberries, sugar, and cinnamon. Bring to a gentle boil, and simmer for about 15 – 20 minutes.

Ladle into glass jars. Keep in the refrigerator. Keeps for a couple of weeks or you could freeze some of it.

 

Swedish meatballs with Cranberry Tangerine sauce

 

Not quite what you’re looking for? How about Moroccan Meatballs with Quinoa

Zombie brain Meatloaf. This super easy Halloween recipes is great fun for kids and serves a crowd. Meat lovers unite. I //thecookingspoon.org

Zombie Brain Meatloaf

 

Ok, let’s set the mood.

Imagine that eerie organ music you always hear in scary movies as background music while you read the recipe!

This is such a fun Halloween dinner, don’t you think? I know it’s a bit scary and creepy, but isn’t that the point. Kids love it. Especially the lucky one who get’s to stick the knife in the brain.

I can’t believe it’s one week ’till Halloween. I’m so ready. How about you?

If you still don’t know what to make, make this brain. It’s super easy and high on special effects.

Zombie brain Meatloaf. This super easy Halloween recipes is great fun for kids and serves a crowd. Meat lovers unite. I //thecookingspoon.org

 

 

 

Serves 6 – 8

Needed:

Rectangular Dish, 7 by 5-Inch,

Wilton 12-Inch Featherweight Decorating Bag

Wilton Tip No. 6

Cane Sugar Free  Dairy Free

Ingredients Brain;

2 lbs. ground beef

1/2 C. Panko Bread Crumbs

2 eggs

1 tbsp. Ketchup

2 tsp. prepared Dijon Mustard

1 tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce

1 clove of  garlic, peeled and grated

1 medium onion, peeled and chopped very fine

1 1/2 tsp Himalayan Pink Salt, Fine

freshly ground Black Pepper

1 tsp. Oregano

1 tbsp. fresh chopped parsley

Ingredients Basting:

2 tbsp. Ketchup

2 tbsp. Conimex Ketjap Manis, (Indonesian Sweet Soy Sauce)

Decorating:

1/4 C. Ketchup

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Method;

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Combine ground beef, and the remaining ingredients for the brain in a medium sized mixing bowl. Using your hand, incorporate everything into the meat. This only takes 30 seconds or so, you do not want to over mix.

Transfer meat into a large baking tray lined with parchment paper, press it down  and shape into a brain. With the handle of a spoon go alongside the entire brain to make a ridge in the middle, then make indentations with your fingers tips all over the brain to create an uneven surface.

Mix ketjap manis with ketchup and baste brain with half the basting sauce. Baste again after an hour.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour and 20 minutes

Remove from oven and drain off excess grease. Let stand for 5 minutes, put 1/4 cup of Ketchup in a pastry bag fitted with the No. 6 tip, and pipe the motive (see picture) onto the brain.

Let one of the kids stick a knife in the brain!

Zombie brain Meatloaf. This super easy Halloween recipes is great fun for kids and serves a crowd. Meat lovers unite. I //thecookingspoon.org

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More Halloween dishes and delights? Check out All Hallow’s Eve Doughnuts

Moroccan Meatball with Quinoa

Moroccan Meatballs with Quinoa

 

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Serves 4

Cane Sugar Free  Dairy Free  

 

I once flew to morocco with friends in a Cessna 200. It was a little scary but so much fun. The man who owned the aircraft was a German diplomat and he had just bought a house thru my mothers real estate company in  Spain.

I don’t really know why we were invited I just said yes straight away in case he changed his mind.

I was even allowed to sit in the co pilots seat for a little while and got to fly for about two minutes until we were so off course I was asked to sit in the back again, Oops.

We went to Marrakech, and the food, the market, the people, the smell…….was so enchanting like nothing else I had ever seen before. I fell in love instantly with the sweet and savoury cuisine.

I have been making these meatballs ever since. I make a lot of other Moroccan dishes too but this one is by far the quickest and easiest, but it still gets you to the 1001 Arabian Nights atmosphere.

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Ingredients;

1 lb. lean ground lamb

1 onion peeled and chopped fine

2 tbsp. olive oil

1 garlic clove, peeled and grated

1 tsp. himalayan salt or regular

ground black pepper

1 egg yolk

1/4 C. (home made ) dried breadcrumbs

1/2 tsp.  Ras el Hanout , see Ras el Hanout. for spice mix recipe

1/4 tsp. ground coriander

1/4 tsp. ground dried ginger

1/4 tsp. ground cardamom

1/4 tsp. ground cumin

2 tbsp. fresh chopped coriander plus 1 tbsp. for serving

3 tbsp. chopped pistachios (dry toasted briefly in a pan). Reserve one tablespoon to sprinkle over before serving.

4 dried apricots chopped

For the sauce;

1 tbsp. tomato puree

1  14 oz. can chopped tomatoes, or 5 to 6 fresh ones chopped

1 tsp. beef stock powder

1 tbsp. honey

3  tbsp. orange juice plus 5 tbsp water to make 1/2 cup in total

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Method;

In a large frying pan add 1 tbsp. of  the oil and cook the onion and garlic gently for about 5 minutes on medium low heat until slightly beginning to turn golden. Add all the spices and remove from the heat to cool.

In a large mixing bowl, add the minced meat the onion and spice mix, the breadcrumbs, egg yolk, salt, pepper, 2 tbsp. pistachios, chopped coriander and apricots. Mix with your hands and form into golf ball sized meatballs.

Wipe your frying pan and add the remaining oil. Set heat on medium high. Fry all the meatballs until nicely browned all over and remove to a plate. Work in batches if necessary.

Once you have cooked all the meatballs. Start making the sauce in the same frying pan with the remaining oil in it and add the tomato paste and fry for 30 seconds then add the remaining ingredients. Bring to a simmer, add the meatball back to the pan and simmer with the lid half on the pan, for about twenty minutes.

Meanwhile make the Quinoa.

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For the Quinoa;

1 cup (dry) quinoa

2 c. chicken  stock

2 tbsp. chopped pistachios (dry toasted briefly in a pan)

1 c. chickpeas drained

6 dates, stone removed and chopped

1 medium carrot, peeled and coarsely grated

1 tsp. garlic powder

ground pepper

2 tbsp. chopped coriander

 

Place quinoa in a fine-mesh strainer and rinse thoroughly under running water. This is to remove the saponins that taste very bitter.

Did you know that saponins are for protection against insects?

Put quinoa to a medium saucepan. Add the stock, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for about 15 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and add the dates, carrot, garlic powder, chickpeas and pepper. Just before serving add the coriander and the pistachios.

Note: some quinoa only takes ten minutes to cook, so check the package instructions!!!

To serve place the quinoa on one side of a large platter, the meatballs and sauce on the other side. Sprinkle with more pistachios and chopped coriander.

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Not quite what you’re looking for? How about these  Meat Balls ?

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