I was finding myself having one of those black holes of recipe inspiration. It's a viscious cycle sometimes. I can't think of any new ideas for recipes, I panic that I will have nothing for the blog, then that makes it even harder for me to come up with new recipes.
I thought it was going to be particularly difficult these days because I'm on a bit of an austerity diet. Vacations and birthdays and visits from friends have caused me to indulge in a bit too much gluttony and it was starting to show on the scale. I knew I had to take some drastic measures. It was time for another 3-week sugar fast. Usually sugar fasts are also wheat fasts (that's one way to enforce the gluten-free lifestyle in this house). I can lose a few pounds nicely this way.
These sugar fasts have caused me to become more interested in the whole "Paleo" diet even though I'm a bit of a skeptic about diets. It's a pretty tough idea for me to follow through with since it requires abandonment of all grains and sugar and even dairy products. However, I am trying to keep my diet as natural and fresh as possible and the Paleo eaters, while a bit "out there" in their thinking, are nothing if not natural.
Surprisingly enough it was a paleo website that provided me with inspiration for a new recipe. I found a recipe for meatballs in a coconut sauce that sounded delicious - sort of. It needed a little TERP treatment to make it truly delicious, but once I knew what I wanted to do, a recipe came together.
I seasoned meatballs made from turkey and chicken sausage with mint, cumin, and cinnamon. The sauce was made from fresh tomatoes, carrots, onions, garlic, ginger, spices, and coconut milk. I served it over cauliflower puree, but rice will do just fine.
One issue I have with meatballs is that since I have started to cut the gluten, I haven't found a good substitute for bread or breadcrumbs. I hate the taste of rice breadcrumbs. Nut meals haven't been much improvement either. Paleo eaters just leave it out. I don't think the elimination of bread was detrimental to the taste or consistency of my meatballs.
Fresh tomatoes are good and abudant this time of year, so if you have them, use them. You can experiment with canned during other times of the year.
Like the photo? I took the trouble of setting up the light box and then realized my camera battery needed charging and ended up taking this with my phone. Not the prettiest dish in the world? That's okay. It tasted pretty good. It was a lot of work though, so I'm not sure how worth it the whole thing was.
Curried Turkey Meatballs
1 pound ground turkey
2 large links chicken sausage (avoid fancy flavors - mild Italian will do) removed from casing
2 tsp chopped fresh mint
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
Mix together all ingredients. Shape into balls and fry in a little olive oil until browned on all sides. Place in curry sauce and cook for about 20 minutes or until cooked through.
5 cloves garlic
1" piece of ginger
2 tsp salt
1 onion, diced
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground cardamon
2 tsp garam masala
2 carrots, cut in small pieces
6-8 ripe red tomatoes (depending on size), cored, seeded and diced
1 cup coconut milk
2 Tbl olive oil for cooking
Mince garlic and ginger. Then mince them together with the salt, smooshing them up with the flat of your knife. Set aside.
Heat olive oil in a large frying pan or saute pan. Add onions to the pan and then add the cumin, cinnamon, cardamon, and garam masala. Stir till onions are well coated and cook until onions are soft. Stir in ginger-garlic mixture and cook until fragrant. Add tomatoes and cook until they are soft and start losing their shape. Stir in coconut milk. At this point you can add the meatballs to simmer.