One Turkey Meatball Recipe, Two Different Dinners

Recipe Number 2: Turkey Meatball Sandwich with Mozzarella Cheese
Recipe Number 2: Turkey Meatball Sandwich with Mozzarella Cheese

From one Turkey Meatball recipe, two different meals were served, sans the classic tomato sauce. Recipe number one was Turkey Meatballs with Creamy Mushroom Sauce and Lemon Arugula Spaghetti. The second recipe was a Turkey Meatball Sandwich with Mozzarella Cheese. Why should tomato sauce have all the fun? This is a versatile ingredient that will add instant flavor to other dishes, as well. Flatten a raw meatball to make a breakfast sausage served with pancakes, add a pre-cooked meatball to a salad for lunch, or try it in another pasta dish for dinner.

Some meals can be too healthy, that they taste bland. These meatballs are healthier additions to one of those boring meals. Starting with the addition of wheat bread crumbs (when it’s available), this version uses shredded carrots, diced mushrooms and fresh herbs. Try another shredded vegetable, such as zucchini. Give the meatballs a stronger mushroom flavor by adding dried porcini, and use the rehydrating soaking water in a creamy sauce. Finely chopped spinach or arugula will taste just as good with or without parsley. Cinnamon, a Chinese five-spice powder, or ginger will have the meatballs taste worldly. What about different cheeses to try instead of Parmesan? Try Blue cheese, and visiting a cheese shop will offer more choices. Shape them into different sizes to fit into a unique recipe. In addition, freeze excess meatballs for another dish in the future. The ideas for adding Turkey Meatballs in recipes are infinite.

Only two dishes are mentioned in this post, but try creating your own recipe idea. Think of a favorite combination of ingredients that could be enhanced with meatballs. If tomato sauce is a safer choice, then make it to your satisfaction. The kitchen is a lab of experimentation. May your Turkey Meatball recipe be delicious.

Turkey Meatballs: Cooked
Turkey Meatballs: Cooked
Turkey Meatballs before going into the oven.
Turkey Meatballs before going into the oven.

Turkey Meatballs

1 lb. ground turkey (if possible, ask the butcher for 1/2 lb. ground white and 1/2 lb. ground dark turkey meat)
1 egg
1 tbsp. fresh cream
1/2 cup toasted and finely chopped almonds
(Optional) 1/4 to 1/ cup fennel, finely diced
3/4 cup bread crumbs, plus more if necessary*
1/8 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup minced fresh herbs (Italian parsley, basil, rosemary, sage, and/or oregano)
2 tbsp. fresh thyme leaves
Sea salt and fresh black pepper; to taste (be generous)
Crushed red pepper, to taste
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 medium onion, finely diced
1/2 to 3/4 cup portabella or white button mushrooms, diced
2 tbsp. tomato paste
1/4 cup grated carrots
1 tbsp. olive oil

1. Mix all ingredients together. Add more breadcrumbs if mixture is too moist.

2. Preheat oven to 500°F.

3. Shape meatballs into half inch in diameter balls (the size is actually choice). Place on a parchment lined paper baking sheet at a half inch a part.

4. Place in the oven to bake for 15 to 25 minutes. Afterwards, reduce temperature to 350°F to bake for at least 45 minutes.**

5. Serve with your favorite dish.

*Bread crumbs made from wheat bread is healthier, but white is fine, too.

** Timing varies according to size of the meatballs.

The Recipes

Number 1: Turkey Meatballs with Creamy Mushroom Sauce and Lemon Arugula Spaghetti

Lemon Arugula Spaghetti
Lemon Arugula Spaghetti

Ingredients for Lemon Arugula Spaghetti
1 lb. Spaghetti, cooked al dente according to the packaging’s directions
10 oz. of Baby Arugula or Spinach
salt and pepper, to taste
The juice and zest of one lemon
olive oil
white balsamic vinegar

Directions for Lemon Arugula Spaghetti
1. According to the packaging’s directions, cook Spaghetti pasta al dente. Rinse under cold water and drain.

2. Place spaghetti in a large bowl and toss with the rest of the ingredients. Set aside.

Ingredients for Creamy Mushroom Sauce
1 onion, diced
1 to 2 garlic cloves, minced
1 lb. of portbella mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1/2 cup of white wine or chicken stock
1 bay leaf
1/4 to 1/2 cup of cream
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup parsley, roughly chopped

Directions for Creamy Mushroom Sauce
1. In a medium sized pot warm olive oil over medium heat, saute onions until translucent. Add garlic and stir for 30 seconds.

2. Add mushrooms, 1/8 to 1/4 cup of white wine, bay leaf, salt and pepper. Stir until mushrooms are almost soft.

3. Add the rest of the wine and bring sauce to a simmer.

4. Add the cream and adjust seasoning. Bring sauce to a simmer.

5. Add Parsley to the sauce. Place aside and keep warm.

Plating the Lemon Arugula Spaghetti with Creamy Mushroom Sauce and Turkey Meatballs
1. Place Spaghetti on a plate.
2. Top with Turkey Meatballs.
3. Pour Creamy Mushroom sauce over the dish.
4. Garnish with parsley, Romano cheese and fresh black pepper.

Recipe 2: Turkey Meatball Sandwich with Mozzarella Cheese

1 loaf of fresh French bread
8 to 10 oz. of fresh mozzarella cheese
1/4 to 1/2 lb. of marinated vegetables from the olive bar (peppadews, artichoke hearts, pitless olives, and so forth), roughly chopped
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1 head of romaine lettuce, cleaned and roughly torn
salt and pepper
olive oil
Turkey Meatballs, reheated/warm
Garnish: Parmesan Cheese

1. Preheat oven to 400°F.

2. Slice bread vertically in half. Drizzle bread with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Lay slices of mozzarella cheese on the bread. Place bread in the oven until cheese is melted.

3. Meanwhile as the bread is toasting, make the salad: Add the rest of the ingredients to a bowl and toss gently. (Note: No vinegar is needed for this recipe, because of the acidity of the olive bar’s ingredients.)

4. Making the sandwich: Place bread onto a plate. Top with salad and Turkey meatballs. Garnish with grated Parmesan.

5. Enjoy!

3 thoughts on “One Turkey Meatball Recipe, Two Different Dinners

  • July 21, 2010 at 6:20 pm

    I think I can get my son to eat this! It looks great! We are trying to wean ourselves off of red meat….and this is a wonderful recipe! I will have to try it soon!

  • April 12, 2010 at 11:00 am

    I am loving that arugula pasta. I may need to try that! It looks fresh and tasty!

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