Sundays go like this: I make my our family’s grocery list. I gather my reusable grocery bags, tell my husband I am going to the grocery store, and as I basically step out the door, he panics as if I hadn’t prepared meals or won’t buy snacks or something and immediately adds a plethora of suggestions and meal ideas to the list. This whole experience is much more favorable than having him actually accompany me to the grocery store, so I generally put up with it.
The week these chicken Parmesan meatballs were on my menu he promptly suggested 3 meals when I announced I was heading out to go grocery shopping. Oddly, this week he spat out: Pork Tenderloin! (I already had it on my list), big salads! (ditto), and MEATBALLS (also on the menu plan). It was some crazy synchronicity.
What I didn’t tell him was the meatballs I had planned were chicken meatballs – something he’d surely have something to say about (meatballs should be beef!). Turns out he noticed the ground chicken before I was able to serve him the dinner but he went into it with an open mind and adored this meal, as did I. He commented specifically on the deliciousness of the sauce, which I can only attribute to the San Marzano tomatoes I picked up, so I suggest you do the same. The recipe made a bunch and we had meatball grinders, pasta with meatballs, and plenty of leftovers.
For the tomato sauce
- 1 (28 oz.) can whole tomatoes, liquid reserved
- 1 tbsp. butter
- ¼ cup finely chopped onion
- 1½ tbsp. tomato paste
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ tsp. red pepper flakes
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/3 cup half-and-half
For the meatballs:
- ½ cup dried panko bread crumbs
- 1/3 cup grated onion
- 1 tsp. dried parsley
- 1 tsp. dried basil
- ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
- ¼ tsp. ground black pepper
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1½ lbs. ground chicken
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 4 oz. shredded mozzarella
- 2 tbsp. freshly grated Parmesan
- 2-3 tbsp. minced fresh basil (optional)
- To make the sauce, add the tomatoes to a blender or food processor. Puree until smooth, adding a bit of the reserved liquid if necessary to smooth the mixture out and reach the consistency you desire.
- Melt the butter in a large, deep skillet or sauté pan over medium-high heat.
- Add the onion and cook about 3 minutea, until it begins to soften and golden. Stir in the tomato paste, garlic and red pepper flakes and mix just until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Stir in the pureed tomato mixture, lower the heat to a simmer, and cook about 5-8 minutes, until the sauce is slightly thickened.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the cream. Set aside.
- To make the meatballs, combine the panko bread crumbs, grated onion, parsley, basil, Parmesan, salt, pepper, garlic and egg. Stir together with a fork just until blended. Mix in the ground chicken and knead together with a wooden spoon until evenly combined. Form the mixture into meatballs about 1½-inch in diameter.
- Preheat the oven to 400˚ F. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the meatballs to the pan in a single layer (two batches may be necessary if you don’t have enough surface area.) Let cook, turning occasionally, until all sides are browned. Meatballs will not be cooked through.
- Once all of the meatballs are browned, place them in the pan with the tomato sauce. Sprinkle the mozzarella and additional Parmesan over the top. Bake until the cheese is fully melted and bubbling and the meatballs are cooked through, about 15 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and garnish with the fresh basil. Serve warm.
I am not sure if this is “ham and bean” soup or “ham bone” soup. In any case, it has both beans and ham in it but the bone is removed before serving.
When I was a vegetarian this might be the only meal I ever missed. This is odd because this was the type of meal my mom made maybe once a year growing up, usually after holidays when there was a leftover ham hanging around.
When my dad said he was bringing a honey baked ham to our Christmas dinner, I immediately notified him I’d be taking home the bone. He didn’t protest my greediness and I invited him over to enjoy the soup when I finally got around to making it.
My father loved it so much that he immediately went out and bought another ham just for the purpose of eating this soup.
- 1 lb 15 bean soup mix (recommended brand: ” Hurst’s HamBeens” you won’t be using the spice packet included)
- 2 cans chicken broth
- 1 tsp ground mustard
- 1 15 ounce can diced tomatoes
- 2 ribs of celery, diced
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 ham bone with approximately 2 cups of ham remaining on the bone
- enough water to cover
- ground black pepper and salt to taste
- Add all ingredients to a large soup/stock pot and bring to a boil.
- Boil vigorously for 10 minutes.
- Reduce to a simmer and cook 2 hours or until beans are tender.
- Remove bone from soup, pick off and chop ham and return to soup, and discard bone.
I was just watching the evening news coverage. Yesterday Atlanta was brought to its knees with a winter storm. And when the coverage got to the parts about kids sleeping at school, parents walking miles to check on the kids at their schools schools, and parents whose children’s whereabouts remained unknown for hours, I just began sobbing.
That is so terrifying. I cannot imagine. I just can’t.
Luckily, here in South Carolina, the storm hit a few hours later than forecasted and school officials had already preemptively cancelled or released school students early. Kids were safe and sound at home. Hopefully their parents (and the Atlanta kids parents!), had a blast playing with them in the snow and perhaps even made a batch of snow ice cream.
This was my first time having snow ice cream. I saw the idea on Laura’s blog, Tide and Thyme, but didn’t quite have the ingredients on hand for her recipe. I improvised with that I had at home and I must say, this made for one awesome snow day snack!
Our area received about 2 inches of the fluffy white stuff and I gathered the requisite white stuff by simply scraping the top layer of clean, untouched snow from the rails of my back porch. In less than 5 minutes and with barely any elbow grease, I was digging into an awesome sweet treat. If you are making this for kids, I suggest you double the recipe below!
Snow Ice Cream
- 5 cups fresh snow
- 1 cup milk
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 3/4 tsp vanilla extract
- Combine all ingredients into a large bowl and stir lightly until fully incorporated. Eat immediately!