Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Chicken Ricotta Meatballs over Pan Fried Polenta and Mushroom Ragu

Thanks to Cooking Light, and Elly My dinner tonight was the bomb! I subscribe to CL and I always can find something, usually a bunch of things that I want to make. I usually forget though, but I didn't tonight. Tonight I remembered a meatball recipe in this month's issue that looked to die for. I didn't have any ground turkey so I used the ground chicken I had on hand instead. I can see these going into my regular rotation, they were that good.

Not wanting to make just the meatballs by themselves I ask the advice of my Nesties. Elly had commented on making a chunky tomato sauce to go with them, and I remembered a fabulous recipe she had on her blog. It was the mushroom ragu and pan fried polenta. I had found my pairing for the meatballs. : ) I did make a few slight modifications to the CL recipe, as well as Elly's due to what I had on hand.
I have enough left over for about 4 more lunches too, which is a huge bonus while I'm on this weight loss kick.

The meatballs were 5 points per serving (4 meatballs), the ragu was one point per serving (about 1/4-1/2 cup), and the polenta was 3 points per serving (2 slices). You can make the polenta healthier without the pan frying, but I just wanted the crispiness tonight.
Chicken-Ricotta Meatballs
(Inspired by Cooking Light)
I got 23 meatballs out of this
Preheat oven to 375
1 Lb. ground chicken
1/2 cup panko
1/2 cup part skim ricotta cheese
1/4 cup eggbeaters or one egg
1/4 cup fresh basil chopped
salt and pepper
Combine all ingredients and shape into balls. Put foil on a cookie sheet and a cooling rack on top of that. Put meatballs on top of cooling rack and cook for about 20-25 minutes.
Pan Fried Polenta and Mushroom Ragu
For the Polenta
1 Tbs. light butter
1 cup corn meal (I used white)
1 cup low fat milk
3 cups water
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
2 tsp. oregano
2 cloves garlic
flour for dredging
2 Tbs. olive oil
Heat butter in a pan over medium heat. Add garlic and oregano and cook until fragrant. Add liquids and bring to a boil. Whisk in corn meal in a steady stream and continue to whisk until incorporated. Lower heat and continue to whisk for about 5 minutes.
Pour into a 9x13 pan and cool a few hours or overnight. Cut into squares, dust with flour. Heat oil into a medium sized pan and brown on both sides.
Mushroom Ragu
1 Tbs. light butter
2 tsp. olive oil
1/2 lb. crimini mushrooms sliced
1/4 cup diced onion
1 bay leaf
2 garlic cloves minced
2 1/2 Tbs. tomato paste
2 Tbs. fresh basil
1 Tsp. dried oregano
1 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup marsala wine
salt and pepper to taste
Heat oil and butter in a med. sized sauce pan over medium heat. Saute onions for about 2 minutes. Add garlic, mushrooms, basil, oregano, and bay leaf and saute another minute. Lower heat and cook about 20 minutes until moisture from mushrooms has been released. Add tomato paste and cook about a minute. Add wine and cook about 3 minutes. Add broth and cook another couple of minutes. Serve over polenta and meatballs.


Court Cooks said...

I will have to make this!! What a great combo!

What's Cookin Chicago said...

This looks awesome! I have a majority of the ingredients to make this so just a quick stop at the store I can whip this up! I've been feeling blah about cooking and I really need to be in the kitchen more these days!

Ally said...

I know what you mean Joelen! I don't think I'm going to be very creative the next few weeks with this move coming up!

Elly said...

Yummy, ally! Great meal. Those meatballs do look good and I am a sucker for anything ricotta :) Glad you liked the polenta/ragout. Yours looks so great!

That Girl said...

I'm dying to try that polenta!

Cate said...

Ohhh I love meatballs. And with the mushrooms in that sauce, I'm pretty much obsessed with this recipe!

Erin said...

That looks like a perfect combination of flavors that I love. I made turkey meatballs last winter that tasted fabulous but were so mushy. It looks like yours turned out better, so I will have to try this recipe. Not too many points, either, for such a satisfying recipe.