Cheap, Easy, Good: Turkey Meatballs With Grapes
Need a dish that's simple to do, inexpensive, and that's likely to appeal to everyone in your family? Go for Turkey Meatballs With Grapes. Yes, it sounds a little weird, but the dish in good! Tender turkey meatballs are spiced gently and coexist in a creamy sauce with savory onions and sweet grapes. The recipe uses one pan for cooking, so cleanup is limited. The cooking time also is short--about half an hour--so the recipe is doable, even on a week night. The turkey meatballs are great over rice or noodles, but I suspect any neutral starch--quinoa, barley, polenta--that would soak up the sauce would be good. If you have any of the meatballs leftover, they make great lunches. Just rewarm the meatballs on 50 percent power in the microwave. Enjoy!
Turkey Meatballs With Grapes -- Serves 4
16 ounces of lean ground turkey (93 percent)
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/4 teaspoon of pepper
1 teaspoon of poultry seasoning
1/2 teaspoon of dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder
1 teaspoon of dried parsley
2 tablespoons of grated Parmesan cheese
1 large egg
1/2 cup of plain, fat-free or low-fat yogurt
1-2 teaspoons of Dijon mustard
1/4 - 1/2 cup of seasoned dried bread crumbs (use a little more or less, depending on
the moisture in your turkey)
In a large bowl, mix together all the meatball ingredients until well combined. You want a cohesive, not wet mixture. You also don't want dry meatballs, so use a little more or fewer breadcrumbs, depending on the moisture in your turkey. To test cohesiveness, pinch off a golf ball sized bit of the meatball mixture and squish it together. If it holds together and doesn't crumble or seem too watery, you're good.
1 tablespoon of oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 1/2 - 2 cups of sweet grapes -- I use red ones, but use what you like/have
1 1/2 cups of water mixed with 2 teaspoons of reduced sodium "Better Than Bullion"
1/4 cup of white wine
1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 - 1 cup of light sour cream
Chopped parsley, optional
Make the meatballs. If you want to make the meatball mixture early in the day, cover it, and refrigerate it until cooking time, the flavor of the meatballs will improve, but the refrigeration step isn't necessary. Add the oil to a non-stick skillet and swirl it around. Begin heating the pan on medium heat, while forming and then dropping golf ball sized meatballs into the skillet. It's okay that the skillet is cold to start! The cold skillet will keep your meatballs from sticking. Once you have all the meatballs in the pan, add the chopped onions and grapes and cover the skillet. Cook the meatballs for 8-10 minutes, turning the heat down a bit if the pan gets too hot and the meatballs look like they are browning too much (they don't need to brown a lot, just to cook through). Remove the lid, turn the meatballs over, and stir the onions and grapes a bit. Add a tablespoon or two of water if the bottom of the pan is getting dry (it should have a fair amount of moisture in it). Recover the pan and cook the meatballs for another 5-6 minutes. Add the water/Better Than Bullion to the pan as well as the white wine, Dijon, and salt and pepper to taste (I use about 1/4 teaspoon of each). Stir everything gently, scraping the bits from the bottom of the pan to incorporate them, partially cover the pan, and reduce the heat to medium-low. Let the mixture simmer until the sauce has reduced by about half. Turn off the heat and stir in the sour cream. Sprinkle on some chopped parsley if you'd like before serving the meatballs.