A site for sharing cooking, eating, and drinking experiences. Let's cook and share together! I hope that you will use this information and share your own cooking, eating, and drinking experiences. If you have a question or would just like to suggest something to try in the kitchen, I would be happy to experiment and report on the outcome. So please enjoy and participate in this simple culinary exchange. I plan to post every other week if not more.
Welcome to I Love to Cook
Cooking is something I have always enjoyed. I learned to cook at the apron strings of my mother and grandmother. The experience of cooking brings me both pleasure and peace of mind.
Sunday, January 9, 2011
Chicken Mozzarella and Sun Dried Tomatoe Meatballs
My wife is not fond of red meat, in fact the only meats she eats are chicken and a little fish. We had been purchasing pre-made meatballs from Trader Joe's but for some reason they have been discontinued. Of course that become a cooking challenge and the recipe follows. A few comments - The chicken is dry and bland so seasoning the meat is important. Also I did not add any oil but will probably use sun dried tomatoes in oil as part of the base.
1 1/2 Boneless, skinless chicken breast
1/2 cup Sun dried tomatoes (I used dried)
1 cup Buffalo mozzarella (approximately a ball)
1/4 cup Bread crumbs
1/2 - 1 tsp Salt and pepper
Rinse and pat dry the chicken breast, then cut into 1 - 2 inch cubes. Nothing artistic just working chunks that can easily be chopped in a food processor. A meat grinder should also work. Place the chicken cubes into the processor with the knife blade and pulse the chicken until it is roughly chopped. Add the mozzarella, tomatoes, egg and bread crumbs. I would also take a quick stab at some initial seasonings (salt & pepper as a minimum). Pulse the processor a few more times to ensure it is thoroughly mixed. An initial caution is to not over blend the mixture since you want a 'hamburger' consistency and not a soup.
Pre heat the oven to 375 and oil or apply non stick spray to a cooking sheet. Form the meat mixture into meatballs . I tried to use a couple of spoons to get a consistent size then gently finalized the form into balls. I made the balls about 2 - 2 1/2 inches but personal preference should be your driver. Place the meatballs on the sheet and then into the oven. As always with chicken complete cooking all the way through is the key. I ended up cooking the meatballs for about 40 minutes. In the middle of the process I rolled the balls 180 degrees so that more than one side would be crisped.
A second caution - working with raw chicken requiresgood housekeeping skills. Be sure to not cross contaminate surfaces and/or utensils a wash your hands thoroughly after handling any raw meat. I cut the chicken and then washed the knife, the cutting board, my hands and the general work area with soap/water and a little bleach. I am not trying to scare anyone off or preach hygiene to the obsurd but contamination leads to salmonella which after you remover, you are typically not in the mood to eat from that cook or that recipe again.