Sometimes there is a good reason why we should prepare meals from scratch. Do you really know what is in your food, and do you care? We rely on labelling and testing, but it appears it is not enough, in light of the the recent “horsemeat” meatballs controversy which hit Europe and Britain last week. Ikea withdrew meatballs from sale, after the Czech Republic found traces of horsemeat in their testing.
Horsemeat may be controversial for some, but not all of us. The British are definitely against eating horsemeat, but it appears that the Europeans have had a taste for it in the past. According to the BBC News on-line magazine today, 4 March, fashionable Parisian chefs are looking at putting horsemeat back on the menu again. One offering is “Succulent horse tartare”. I think not, but then I’m not into frog legs either! Quoted in the same article, via UNECE, horsemeat has significant nutritional properties, such as amino acids and poly unsaturated fats that reduce cholesterol. The following article makes interesting reading. Maybe Ikea need to rethink their marketing!
It is time to get back to some simple home cooking! I have been tempted to buy the pre-prepared meatballs from the supermarket, but usually resist. While it may take a little extra time to cook the home-made variety, they just taste so much better! I hope you will try the following recipe, which takes 10 minutes to prepare, and 15 minutes to cook. The recipe has been adapted from allrecipes.com.
Be careful not to overcook the meatballs. Cook for no more than 15 minutes, otherwise the meat will by dry.
CHICKEN MEATBALLS WITH ITALIAN HERBS
Serves 3 – 4 people
- 500g chicken mince
- 3/4 cup panko or dry breadcrumbs
- 1/3 cup parmesan cheese
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1 tbsp, italian herbs from gourmet garden tube
- 1 tsp finely chopped rosemary
- pinch salt and pepper, to taste
- oil for frying
- 3oog spaghetti
- 500g jar pasta sauce
Combine chicken mince with breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, egg, herbs and seasonings. Using wet hands, roll into 3 cm balls and set aside.
Bring a large pot of water to boil, and add spaghetti. Cook according to packet instructions.
While the spaghetti is coooking, heat some oil in a heavy based frying pan. Add meatballs to heated pan. Cook until lightly brown on all sides, add pasta sauce and cook for a further 5 minutes.
Serve on top of cooked spaghetti, and sprinkle with parsley if desired.