meatballs with mint + pine nuts + butternut
When I first opened my mystery basket on Dinner Divas and saw the mince the only thing that went through my mind was MEATBALLS!! Nothing else … I never saw the chicken … in fact I did not register any of the other mystery ingredients … but at that moment in time and space, in front of all the cameras your brain just freezes. In retrospect you always end up quizzing yourself … I could have done this or I could of done that … in situations like this hysteria creeps in and disrupt your thoughts but I was resolute and determined to make this dish and prepare it well.
The other thing was that I had made a commitment to myself before I entered the competition … to stick with my gut, make a decision, go with it and not entertain any reservations. When you start doubting or second guessing yourself, this is when things tend to go awry and in a competition there is no time for messing about.
When I saw Kristy making the same dish, I have to admit I was apprehensive and the seeds of doubt were teasing my brain. Fortunately I had the clarity of mind to press on – it was too late to back track – I had to stick to what I believe in and what I know I can do well …
Well the judges did not think so – “oh dear another meatball dish – really” + “the meatballs were just disgusting” … this cut deep at that moment in time – but now I am laughing about it all. I love Caro + Aubrey + Andrew – they have crept deep into my heart and they will have a very special place in my life forever and ever …
So here is my version of meatballs – something between my mom’s meatballs + what i have tasted in New York + something I have tasted in Italy. I added some mint + pine nuts + loads of veggies and used my fantastic tomato sauce which you can look up here …
Spaghetti + Meatballs
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 10 minutes
500g Extra lean mince
4 Garlic cloves – grated
1 Potato large – grated
3 Thick butternut rings – grated
1 Carrot – grated
2 Small onions – grated
50g Pine nuts – lightly fried in a non stick pan till golden brown
1 Slice of white bread – soaked in water and excess water squeezed out
Handful of finely chopped parsley
1 t Dry mint
1 t Salt
½ t Freshly ground black pepper
1. Put your oven on grill.
2. Mix all ingredients together. Fry a small teaspoon and taste for seasoning – I normally use the microwave.
3. Make small balls and grill till done – +- 10 minutes. After first 5 minutes turn them around and cook for another few minutes.
4. Put in pasta sauce and simmer for a minute or two. Serve on spaghetti + parmesan shavings + fresh basil.
Click here for recipe.