Gigante Meatballs

Make these when you have time because they’re delicious and they freeze well. I just pulled a bag out of the freezer for dinner added them to a pot of sauce and served it over spaghetti. So easy. They’re also great over polenta!

Giant Meatballs

THE MEATBALLS:

  • 1 pound 80% fat ground beef
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 6 Tbsp Italian style breadcrumbs
  • 6 Tbsp seasoned Panko breadcrumbs
  • 3 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 Tbsp milk
  • 2 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 Tbsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 1/2 cups of your favorite marinara (more if you’d like more sauce. Up to 5 cups)
  • Mozzarella for top (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 375˚F
  2. In a large bowl, mix meatball ingredients until evenly combined.
  3. Portion meatball mixture into 1/4 pound pieces, rolling into balls.
  4. Place meatballs in a large baking dish. Bake for 20 minutes.
  5.  Remove dish from oven and top meatballs with the sauce. Return to oven and bake for an additional 25 – 30 minutes, or until meatballs have reached an internal temperature of 165˚F. If adding mozzarella, add 10 mins before pulling out of oven.

Shelter In Place Trend: Make Sourdough

I had no idea this was a trend until I started seeing pics of sourdough bread on social media. Making a started just seemed like a cool science + nourishing food activity for the kids. Also, being a sourdough starter mom is rewarding and a PITA. Enjoy!

Sourdough Starter

The Kitchn is the resource we used for making the starter (note, it takes 5 days if you can keep it in a room 70-75 degrees f.

Sourdough Bread

  • 1200 grams bread flour
  • 900 grams water
  • 20 grams fine sea salt
  • 20 grams starter

Make the leaven the night before baking. Mix 20 grams of starter with 200 grams of warm water. Wash your hands really well and stir with your hands to disperse.

Add 200 grams of flour and combine well. Cover and let rest at room temp for 12 hours or until puffed in appearance.

To test for readiness, drop a tablespoon of leaven into a bowl of room temp water; if it floats, it’s ready to use. If it doesn’t, allow for more time to ferment.

In a large bowl, combine 200 grams of leaven with 650 grams of warm water. Wash hands really well and stir to disperse with hands.

Add 1000 grams of flour to bowl (if using whole wheat, use 900 grams of bread flour and 100 grams of whole wheat flour). Wash your hands again really well. Use your hands to mix until no traces of flour remain. The dough will be sticky and ragged. Cover the bowl with a towel and let it rest for 25 to 40 mins at room temp.

Add 20 grams of fine sea salt and 50 grams of warm water. Use hands to integrate salt water into dough thoroughly. The dough will begin to pull apart, but continue mixing. It will come back together.

Cover dough with a towel and transfer to a warm environment, 75 – 80 degrees f (like near a window in a sunny room, or inside a turned off oven) Let dough rise for 30 mins.

Fold dough by dipping a very clean hand in water, taking hold of the underside of the dough at one quadrant and stretching it up over the rest of the dough. Repeat this action 3 more times, rotating bowl a quarter turn for each fold. Do this every half hour for 2 1/2 hours more (3 hours total). The dough should be billowy and increase in volume 20 – 30 percent. If not, continue to let rise and fold for up to an hour more.

Transfer dough to a work surface and dust top of flour. Use a dough scraper to cut dough into 2 equal pieces and flip them over so floured sides are face down. Fold the cut side of each piece up onto itself so the flour on the surface remains entirely on the outside of the loaf; this will become the crust. Work dough into taut rounds. Place the dough rounds on a work surface, cover with a towel, and let rest 30 mins.

Mix 100 grams flour and 100 grams rice flour in a different bowl. Line two 10-12″ bread proofing baskets or mixing bowels with clean towels. Use some of the flour mixture to generously flour towels (reserve remaining mixture).

Dust rounds with flour. Use a dough scraper to flip them over onto a work surface so floured sides are facing down. Take one round and starting at the side closest to you, pull the bottom 2 corners of the dough down toward you. Then fold that into the middle third of the dough. Repeat this action on the right and left sides, pulling the edges out and folding them in over the center. Finally, lift the top corners up and fold down over previous folds. Roll dough over so the folded side becomes the bottom of the loaf. Shape into a smooth taut ball. Repeat with the other round.

Transfer rounds, seam-side up, to the prepared baskets. Cover with a towel and return the dough to the 75 – 80 degree f environment for 3 – 4 hours. (Or let dough rise for 10 to 12 hours in the refrigerator. Bring it back to room temp before baking. )

About 30 mins before baking, place a Dutch oven or lidded cast iron pot in the oven and heat it to 500 degrees. Dust tops of dough, still in their baskets with the bread and rice flour mixture. Very carefully remove heated pot from oven and gently turn 1 loaf into pan seam side down. Use a lame or razor blade to score the he top of the bread a few times to allow for expansion. Cover and transfer to oven. Reduce temp to 450 degrees and bake for 20 mins.

Carefully remove the lid (steam may rise) and bake for 16-20 more mins or until crust is rich and golden brown.

Transfer bread to a wire rack to cook for at least 15 mins before slicing. The bottom of the loaf should sound hollow when tapped. Increase oven temp to 500 degrees, clean out the pot and repeat the process with the second loaf.

Recipe from NY Times’ Tartine Bread.

Shelter In Place Yogurt

We’re pretty avid yogurt eaters + I’ve always wanted to try to make yogurt + being stuck at home + last tub of store bought yogurt in fridge + have instant pot = motivation to make yogurt (finally!)

This came out so well. I topped it with a bit of my homemade plum jam, granola, pecans, chia and help seeds.

Shelter In Place Yogurt

  • 8 cups whole milk
  • 1/4 cup yogurt
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  1. Add milk to Instant Pot, close and lock the lid. Select yogurt setting; adjust pressure to boil. This can take up to 1 hour.
  2. Remove the insert with a pot holder and set on a trivet on the counter to cool until the milk reaches 100 to 110 degrees F, use a candy thermometer to keep track (it took me about 30 mins) set aside 1 cup milk.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together yogurt and reserved 1 cup milk. Stir into remaining milk in the insert. Add sugar and vanilla.
  4. Return insert into the Instant Pot. Select yogurt setting, set automatically at 8 hours. For thicker and tangier yogurt, set for 9-10 hours.
  5.  Transfer to storage containers; cover and chill until cold, about 6-8 hours, or up to 10 days.

St Paddy’s Breakfast Muffins

My kids don’t eat spinach. I’m sure they would if there was a way to get them to not see it. Sooooo, I introduced Green Breakfast Muffins this morning. And voila! They love spinach. Mind you, they had no idea – even still – that the Muffins were green because they’re loaded with spinach. They’re super good and cute for this special holiday AT HOME.

Note: lots more recipes coming because being in a “shelter in place” zone means we’ll be doing a lot of kitchen experiments.

Green Breakfast Muffins

  • 2 handfuls of spinach
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ripe large or 2 ripe small bananas
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 TBSP melted butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips (plus some for topping)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees

Grease a muffin tin with butter.

Blend all the ingredients except the flour and chocolate chips. Remove the blender from the base and hand mix in the flour and all the chips but those that you’ll sprinkle on top.

Pour into muffin tins filling about 3/4 full. Top with 5-8 chips.

Bake for 15-18 mins.

Remove from tin and let cool on wire rack. Enjoy!!

Miss Heidi’s Beautiful Noodles

My LO attends the most nurturing and loving preschool led by a an earth fairy. Ok, she’s human but an extraordinary one. Her name is Miss Heidi and her school is called, Rainbow’s End.

My LO tells me the reason it’s called Rainbow’s End is because her school is where the rainbow ends and the gold is the children. Really! Can I stay there all day too? It smells like freshly peeled oranges.

LO loves her “pasta” so here’s the recipe.

Miss Heidi’s Beautiful Noodles

  • 1 bundle of soba noodles
  • 10-12 shakes of Braggs Amino Acid
  • 1 TBSP raw cashew butter
  • A splash of water

Cook noodles for 5-6 mins. Drain. Add braggs and cashew butter and water. Mix and eat.

Butter Mochi Muffins

The cutest/sassiest names website, snixykitchen posted this recipe and I love it. It reminds me of Hawaii and makes me so happy to eat (looking at you gluten-free)! They smell crazy good coming out of the oven. They’re crunchy on the outside and mochi chewy on the inside. I’m addicted. Thanks snixy!!

Butter Mochi Muffins

  • 1/4 cup (2 ounces) unsalted butter, melted and cooled, plus more for greasing pans
  • 2 cups (320 grams) mochiko sweet rice flour
  • 1 cup (200 grams) organic dark brown sugar*
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 13.5-13.66-ounce can full-fat coconut milk
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon molasses (optional, added for flavor) – I didn’t use it
  • 1½ tablespoons each, black and toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and place the oven rack in the middle of the oven.
  2. Generously grease the sides and top of a 12-cup muffin tin** with soft butter.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the sweet rice flour, dark brown sugar, baking powder, and salt.
  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or a large mixing bowl, whisk together the melted butter, coconut milk, eggs, vanilla, and molasses.
  5. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until completely combined.
  6. Divide the batter among the prepared muffin tin, filling each cup all the way to the top. Note: the thickness of your batter will vary depending on the brand and thickness of your coconut milk and temperature of your butter. If your batter is thicker than mine pictured, that’s okay and it will still bake up delicious!
  7. Sprinkle the tops with black and white sesame seeds.
  8. Bake 55-65 minutes*** until the top is brown and crispy and the muffin springs back when poked with a finger.
  9. Let cool 10 minutes in the pan, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  10. Store in an airtight container for up to 4 days.****

NOTES

*Organic dark brown sugar is richer and more caramel-y than conventional, but you an use conventional in a pinch!

**Any muffin tin will do, but for ultimate crispy exterior, I recommend a dark non-stick muffin tin.

***If using a light muffin tin, you may have to bake the muffins a little bit longer.

****If keeping them for longer, they’ll lose their crispiness after a day or two in storage, but you can pop them in the oven for a few minutes to get them crispy again before eating.

Bake Sale Betty Knock Offs

I’ve never been to the restaurant but friends have had parties with Bakesale Betty catering. Bakesale Betty is a restaurant in Oakland, CA. And although, I’ve never been, I love Betty. These chicken fried sandwiches that she has inspired me to make for every major sporting/watch-and-eat event. They’re crunchy and savory and oh so easy to eat way too much of. They’re also great booze absorbers.

Bakesale Betty Knock Offs

  • 4 whole boneless, skinless full chicken breasts (or 8 if they’re halved)
  • 2 packages of biscuit dough (or make your own, ambitious one)
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups panko
  • 1 cup flour
  • 3 TBSP kosher salt
  • 1/2 head cabbage, sliced thin
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • 1 TBSP poppy seeds
  • 1-2 jalapeños, diced
  • Rice wine vinegar
  • Canola oil

Bake biscuits according to package – or your recipe.

While biscuits are backing, mix cabbage, cilantro, poppy seeds and jalapeños. Drizzle with oil and vinegar and set aside (kids do not like this slaw so I always serve it as an add on).

Mix eggs in a shallow bowl. In another shallow bowl, mix part of the panko, flour and salt (this you’ll need to keep filling as the chicken cooks.) Cut chicken pieces diagonally to appropriate size of biscuits. Dredge chicken in eggs then dry mix.

Heat oil in a pan about 1″ deep. Heat until quick but not vigorous bubbles form around panko that’s dropped in to the pan. don’t let it over heat or smoke.

Add chicken to oil and cook until done. Drain on paper towels.

Assemble chicken sandwiches and devour!