There are very few people in this world that would tolerate, let alone love you after you had broken their toe and locked them in the basement (among other things) all by the age of three. I am lucky enough to have that rare individual as my mother; and yesterday was her birthday!
My mother is not one for elaborate parties, so I hopped on the LIRR to celebrate with cocktails and a home cooked meal.
adapted from The Meatball Shop Cookbook
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 pounds ground chicken, preferably thigh meat
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cumin (the recipe calls for ground fennel, but I couldn’t find any)
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- Preheat the oven to 450°F (232°C). Drizzle the olive oil into a 9-by-13-inch baking dish and use your hands to evenly coat the entire surface.
- Combine the chicken, eggs, bread crumbs, parsley, wine, salt, fennel, and pepper in a large bowl and mix by hand until thoroughly incorporated. The mixture may seem quite moist; this is okay.
- Roll the mixture into meatballs about 1 1/2 inches in diameter (roughly golf ball size), making sure to pack the meat firmly. Place the balls in the prepared baking dish, being careful to line them up snugly and in even vertical and horizontal rows to form a grid. The meatballs should be touching one another.
- Roast for 20 to 30 minutes, until the meatballs are firm and cooked through. A meat thermometer inserted into the center of a meatball should read 165°F (74°C). Allow the meatballs to cool for 5 minutes in the baking dish before serving.
The meatballs are a great stand alone dish, so I simply paired it with roasted broccoli and portobello mushrooms, a caprese salad and rosemary bread.
Happy birthday Mom; I truly don’t know what we would do without you!