Friday, March 9, 2012

Turkey Meatballs w/ Feta and Sun-Dried Tomatoes

The first time I made these, they were in turkey burger form using this recipe from Tasty Kitchen. I had never been a fan of turkey and couldn't understand why someone would eat a turkey burger when deliciously tasty Hamburgers exist!!  But then I tried these, and I finally understood the 'why' of the turkey burger.  The combination of the feta cheese, sun-dried tomatoes and spinach along with the ground turkey gives this burger so much flavor.  And the great thing about flavorful burgers is that you don't really need to add a bun and all the fixin's (great for a gluten free life!). Although I did add a bit more flavor to the turkey meatballs by cooking them in my secret ingredient (bacon drippings!). This can be left out and only olive oil used, but I love the flavor and color that the addition of the bacon really brings out.
One of these days I'll take pictures of the entire process with lovely DSLR camera instead of a quickie iPhone pic right before I devour the food ;-).

Turkey Meatballs
2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons Bacon Grease (optional)
1 pound Ground Turkey
½ cups Crumbled Feta Cheese
½ cups Sun-dried Tomatoes, Marinated In Olive Oil, Chopped
½ cups Fresh Baby Spinach Leaves, Julienned
¼ teaspoons Kosher Salt
¼ teaspoons Fresh Cracked Black Pepper
¼ teaspoons Lawry's Garlic Salt With Parsley

Pan Sauce
1 cups Dry White Wine 
¼ - ½  cups Heavy Cream


1. Heat a dutch oven or large skillet over medium heat, and fry one to two pieces of bacon. Remove bacon once fried crisp and drain all but 1-2 Tablespoons of the bacon grease. Add in an additional 1-2 Tablespoons of olive oil. Place turkey, feta, sun dried tomatoes, spinach and seasonings (and if feeling 'healthy' add in one of the bacon slices crumbled) into a mixing bowl. Mix until just combined. Form approximately 1 inch diameter balls and place onto a cookie sheet. Once all are formed, place batches in hot dutch oven or skillet. Cook for 3-4 minutes on all sides or until golden brown and cooked through. Be sure to let the meatballs cook thoroughly before turning, so they do not come apart.  I recommend using tongs to turn the meatballs.  Also feel free to add more olive oil or bacon grease to keep the meatballs from sticking.

2. Once all meatballs are cooked and removed from the dutch oven, increase heat to medium high. Carefully add in 1 cup of dry white wine (the wine doesn't need to be expensive, as long as it is a white wine you enjoy it will work well in the recipe). Also pour a glass of wine for yourself - always important to have a glass of wine while cooking! :-) Using a wooden spoon or spatula scrape the drippings leftover from the meatballs and allow the sauce to cook on medium high for about 2-3 minutes.  Reduce the heat to medium and whisk in up to 1/2 cup of heavy cream.  Continue to cook and whisk until the sauce has thickened, about 3-4 minutes.  Pour the sauce over the meatballs. Serve and Enjoy!
Makes about 24 meatballs.

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