Happy Friday, friends! It’s hard for me to believe that it’s already February. My brand new 2016 planner is sitting (barely touched) on the coffee table and all of my new year’s resolutions and good intentions are still buzzing around in my head…landing once in a while in my consciousness just long enough to make me feel slightly silly for ever making them. So, I’m calling January a wash. I’m giving myself a break, a baby break that is! Because to say that getting anything done with twins is challenging would be the understatement of 2016…hey, maybe I’ll write that in my planner as an inspirational quote.
However, a promise is a promise and last weekend I promised all of you that I would share the recipe for the Chicken Ricotta Meatballs I posted over on Instagram. So here it is, just in the nick of time!
This recipe is one of Jason’s absolute favorites and I’ve been making it for him for years now! It’s so simple and open to lot of interpretation and tweaking if you are so inclined. Creamy ricotta cheese is mixed with ground chicken (or turkey) a few simple seasonings and dropped into a lemony broth to cook.
Then spinach is quickly stirred in just before serving and you have fluffy, cheesy delicious meatballs and a flavorful broth ready to be sopped up with a hunk of bread. It’s pretty amazing.
When I have time I make the chicken broth myself by sautéing a few veggies, a leftover rotisserie chicken, and broth until it’s really flavorful. But by all means, you can simply use a box of really good store-bought chicken stock and that will work just as well. However, if you want to enjoy this as more of a soup, I recommend doctoring it up a bit!
So, here’s the recipe! I hope you will try it, love it, make it again and again and then come back and let me know what you think. So, what are your plans for the weekend? What recipes are you planning to make?
- 1 pound ground white-meat chicken
- 2 cups part-skim ricotta
- 1/3 cup grated Parmesan
- 1 large egg
- 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
- Ground nutmeg
- 4 cups (32 ounces) low-sodium chicken broth
- 4 cups (32 ounces) chicken stock
- 1 lemon, zest peeled off in wide strips, plus lemon slices for serving
- juice of one lemon
- 3 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 bag (6 ounces) baby spinach
- In a large bowl, mix chicken with ricotta, parmesan, egg, salt, and pinch of nutmeg until thoroughly combined. Refrigerate until ready to use. *Don't skip the nutmeg! It's the secret ingredient.
- In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, combine broth, stock, lemon zest, lemon juice, and thyme and bring to a simmer. Season to taste with salt and pepper and more lemon juice if desired.
- Using a spring-loaded 1/4-cup ice-cream scoop or two large spoons, drop meatball mixture into broth (you should have 18 meatballs). Simmer gently until meatballs float and are cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes. Just before serving, add spinach to broth and let wilt; garnish soup with lemon slices.
photos by Leah Bergman
For those who may not be aware, and I won’t blame you if you aren’t, the Super Bowl is this Sunday! Yipee, football! No? Ok…well how about yippee commercials, cocktails and all sorts of yummy snack foods! Now we’re talking.
When Persil® ProClean™ 2in1 laundry detergent, asked me to share a Super Bowl recipe and try out their detergent on my game day stains…well, let’s just say I immediately Googled “who is playing in the Super Bowl?” Ha! No, I am not a football fan but I do enjoy any excuse to blend a round of cocktails (inspired by team colors), make all of my favorite finger foods, and watch a good halftime show. Anyone know who’s performing?
These retro Blue Hawaiians are the perfect cocktail to serve this Sunday whether you happen to be a football fan or just a commercial watcher. They are heavy on the garnish, shockingly blue, and an orange twist on everyone’s favorite piña colada. The perfect cocktail partner to spicy hot wings and savory dips.
Plus they just so happen to be Carolina Panther Blue…because I checked with Google. But don’t worry about the stains. Every last drop of electric blue and maraschino red came right out of my table cloth with Persil® ProClean™ 2in1. It was a miracle I tell you!
Add Cheesy Dill Artichoke Dip, Queso Fundido, Blistered Shishito Peppers with Buttermilk Dip, or Lambs in a Blanket to your game day menu and you’ve got yourself a party! Or stick to the classic and always delicious Spinach Artichoke Dip served in a sourdough bread bowl, my favorite. I’m getting hungry just thinking about Sunday!
So, are you a football fan or just here for the commercials? Oh, and by a show of hands, who picks teams based on their uniform colors? I have to say, the Panthers totally win this one!
- 1 fluid ounce light rum
- 1 fluid ounce blue Curacao liqueur
- 2 fluid ounces pineapple juice
- 1 fluid ounce cream of coconut
- 1 cup crushed ice
- 1 pineapple slice
- 1 maraschino cherry
- Combine rum, blue Curacao, pineapple juice, cream of coconut, and 1 cup crushed ice in blender. Puree on high speed until smooth. Pour into chilled hurricane glass.
- Garnish with a slice of pineapple and a maraschino cherry.
Persil®. The Persil® brand provided me with a sample of Persil® ProClean™ laundry detergent in exchange for a product review. However, all the opinions expressed here are my own. Visit the Persil ProClean Facebook page for additional information about Persil, stain removal tips and fun games and prizes and follow along on social media #BigGameStains. Thank you for supporting the sponsors who support Freutcake!
When we first bought our house, my favorite feature was the abundance of fruit trees in the backyard. Grapefruit and orange, tangelo, guava, peach, avocado and a beautiful Meyer lemon tree.
Meyer lemons really do make the best lemon curd, lemon bars, and just about any lemon dessert you can dream up because they are so sweet, fragrant and juicy. So, when our tree exploded with fruit last week I made a double batch of my very favorite lemon curd.
Like all good things, this recipe starts with egg yolks and sugar and ends with a hearty amount of butter. This curd is so tart yet sweet and thick yet creamy it will make your mouth pucker, your eyes cross, and your feet do a happy dance. I promise!
And since I usually only make lemon curd once a year during winter citrus season, I always, always make a double batch!
I guess it feels a bit more special that way. It’s a recipe I look forward to making and savor once it’s jarred and in my refrigerator. I eat it one spoonful at a time, smeared over toasted sourdough or piled on top of scones. Or I wrap up little jars of it and give it as gifts to friends. Lemon curd really is sunshine in a jar and a promise that Spring is on it’s way!
- 6 large egg yolks
- 3/4 cup sugar
- grated lemon zest from 3 lemons
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 3 lemons)
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold, cut into pieces
- Combine yolks, lemon zest, lemon juice, and sugar in a heavy-bottom saucepan; whisk to combine. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon (be sure to scrape the sides of the pan), until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon, 8 to 10 minutes.
- Remove saucepan from heat. Add butter, one piece at a time, stirring until smooth. Strain through a fine sieve into a medium bowl to remove all zest.
- Cover with plastic wrap, pressing it directly onto the surface of the curd to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate until chilled and set, at least 1 hour or up to 1 day.
- I always double this recipe! It's just that good.
photos by Leah Bergman