Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Teriyaki Meatball Bowls & Old Man Winter

For the life of me, I will never understand people who enjoy snow. I get that it's pretty. Very pretty. Especially when viewed from my love seat with a steaming cup of cocoa in my hands and no reason to leave the house. Then I get my heating bill a week later and decide that snow isn't so hot. Haha. Sorry...it's been a long morning already.

Mom, what the heck did you do???

In any case, winter is now in it's death throws here in Kansas. You can tell from the way little shoots of green stubbornly poke their way through the face of the frozen landscape and hang on despite another 3 inches of snow. It was 19 degrees on the way to work this morning...it's supposed to be 65 in 3 days. Can we do it? I certainly hope so! I have softball practice on Saturday!

When this clinging MidWest winter crap happens, I feel the need to defy it through action and word. Here is the word. DEFY! Action... well... I can kick the snow, but that only leaves me with cold & wet feet. So, instead of making stews and soups (I refuse to entertain the idea of a continued winter!!), I bust out my husband's favorite recipe. Teriyaki Meatball Bowls. So satisfying, filling, delicious, AND totally freezable so I can make it ahead of time. This recipe came to me from Beth at Budget Bytes. I could rave about Beth and her food all day, but suffice to say that the woman rocks my socks off. Her food is tasty, easy and won't knock a major dent in your budget. Hence the name : Budget Bytes.


My hubby mentions this recipe anytime I ask him what he wants for dinner over the next few weeks. And why not? It's as simple as making meatballs and throwing some sauce on them over rice! The homemade teriyaki glaze is sweet and thick, coating the meat with just the right amount of tang. And totally easy to make! You know those bottles of teriyaki you pick up at the grocery store for a few bucks? This stuff has that beat to the ground, and I bet you have most or all of the ingredients in your kitchen right now.

While Milo naps on Saturday, I will whip up the meatballs and pop them in the freezer on a cookie sheet to harden. Once they do, I will dump them all into a gallon zip top baggie. This way on Tuesday when we get home from work and daycare, all I have to do is warm up the oven and pop them in. While they cook up I mix up the easy peasy sauce and throw some rice in the rice cooker. 30 minutes later we have dinner plus leftovers for lunch the next day! And Milo LOVES these things. The meatballs are soft enough that he can chew them to death with his 9 teeth. Sometimes I even make tiny little Milo meatballs just for him. Can you tell I'm in love with my son? He's my most honest food critic. If the toddler will eat it, it's worth posting about :) Anyway, without further ado, here is the recipe! All credit goes to Beth at Budget Bytes.


1 lb. ground turkey (Beth calls for ground pork, but turkey is cheaper around here)
1 large egg
1/2 cup plain breadcrumbs
1 clove garlic, minced
2 inches of fresh ginger
1/2 tsp soy sauce (I use reduced sodium)
2 whole green onions
1/4 tsp black pepper

Teriyaki Glaze

1/2 cup soy sauce (I use reduced sodium)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup water
1/2 TBSP sesame oil (I use whatever I have on hand, like veggie oil)
1 TBSP rice vinegar
2 inches of fresh ginger
2 TBSP corn starch
1 TBSP sesame seeds

Don't forget to get yourself some rice! Just use about 2 cups and cook it according to package directions.

1) Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Chop up your green onions & peel and grate your ginger. Grate your ginger over the bowl so you catch all the juice! YUM! Take all the meatball ingredients, dump them in a bowl and mush them all together with clean hands. Do this until it's all evenly combined.

2) Bust out a cookie sheet and cover it with foil. Roll your meat mixture into little balls (no bigger than a golf ball) and place them on your sheet. Bake for 35 minutes until golden brown. If you freeze them and cook them like I do, add 5 minutes to your baking time to make sure they get completely done.

3) Now, get your rice going according to the package. Let it rest off the heat once done. Cover it with a lid so it stays warm.

4) Time to prep your glaze. Grate your ginger into a nice big pot (it has to hold all your meatballs) and add all your sauce components except the corn starch and sesame seeds. Heat over a low flame until the brown sugar is dissolved.

5) Stir just enough cold water into your corn starch to make it pourable and stir it into the glaze mix. Turn the heat up to medium high until your mixture starts to bubble a little. This will make your glaze thicken up. Now, add the sesame seeds and turn off the burner.

6) Once your meatballs are done, throw them into the pot with the glaze and use a big spoon to stir them around until they are well coated with the glaze. Plate up some rice in a bowl and put 4 or 5 meatballs on top, adding some chopped green onion if you choose. Throw an extra TBSP of glaze on top for flavor and GO TO TOWN!