Friday, March 18, 2011

Asian Meatballs, Veg and Rice Noodles

This is a perfect first recipe post. It really gives me a chance to show you my cooking style. I practice free-spirited, whimsical ways....In life and in the kitchen. I don't particularly like following recipes and although I like to create them, I hardly ever write them down. I want to add what I want to add, right when I think I should add it. I want to follow my heart, my stomach and taste buds. I also don't like math. That might be a reason.
My point is that I am a very true believer in doing exactly what you want, when you want. I have a mind of my own and I do things with passion instead of thought. Dinner will be good because you made it good. Not because you followed a recipe perfectly. I love to encourage people to be their own person in the kitchen. Take your basic skills, the ingredients you have available and go to town.
As I start putting up more posts and recipes, you'll get the hang of how I do things. You might see "spoon fulls" instead of "tablespoons" or "handfuls" could be new to you. I was classically trained in a very prestigious culinary school, but why bother with the boring stuff? Just go with the flow. I hope it brings you as much happiness as it brings me!
The recipe for this bowl of goodness follows. I only used things I had in the fridge already. We are on a tight budget and our taste buds never know it! I only had saltine crackers available (old-school meatball style) but you can use penko bread crumbs if you have it on hand. You can also add other finely chopped vegetables to the meatballs. Carrots would be good, I think. I used beef, you can use whatever you like.
No eggs? No problem! We used the rest of the eggs this morning for breakfast, so I had to do without them for a meatball-binder. You can also use any other kind of Asian noodle, like soba, or even rice would do the trick. And vegetables? All veggies would be good! Load em' in!

"Asian" Meatballs:
16 oz. (or so) of lean ground beef
1/2 white onion, finely chopped
6 or 7 saltine crackers, crushed
Salt & Pepper
1 spoonful of Thai chili paste (optional, if you don't like it hot)
A handful of chopped cilantro
Sesame oil or olive oil

In a large saute pan, heat up some oil.
Once the oils hot, toss in the meatballs and brown on one side. Flip em' over to brown the other side. Once you've flipped the meatballs and they are browned on both sides, pour in a little soy sauce. The pan will sizzle...cover it with a lid for a minute or two. This will help them cook through.

Next, you throw in the veggies...
Put the meatballs on one side of the pan and turn down the heat. Put your prepared veggies on the other side of the pan and put the lid back on. Cook for a minute, open it up and stir them a bit and finish cooking...only about another minute or so, it's best if they are still a little crunchy.
Take everything out of the pan and cover to keep warm while you cook the noodles.

For the Noodles, I used dry thin rice noodles. You can use as much as you want, they are good cold the next day too. Just follow the packaged directions.
Once they are done and drained, throw them in the same pan and add butter. Maybe a little more soy sauce too. Once the butter is melted and all the noodles are good and sauced, it's time to plate it all up!

Big bowl, noodles, veg, meatballs and a slice of lime.
I topped mine with some more Thai chili paste. Heaven!

I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! And I hope you put your own twist on it!

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