Turkey Meatballs with Mozzarella

25 Apr 2014

Turkey Meatballs with Mozzarella

I love food and I love cooking. I watch cookery programmes or flick through recipe books all the time wishing I could make food look absolutely divine, but mostly my food tastes pretty darn good, and looks pretty darn messy. I want to start sharing recipes more often, especially as a Weight Watchers member being able to include propoints values/information, keeping me on track with my own journey in not only trying to shed the pounds, but to learn how to eat healthier and better for my body, forever. Last night I decided to experiment with some turkey mince we had and I decided to take photos and note down the recipe, to share here on the blog. We had already planned to have meatballs, but I wanted to make it different to the usual, feeling a little bored of the same old food right now. After some rummaging in the fridge for inspiration, I decided to make turkey meatballs with a coriander, onion and green chilli kick, in a tomato sauce topped with cherry plum tomatoes and mozzarella cheese (mouthful!) I am absolutely horrendous at taking photos of food (kitchen lighting and steam are not my friends), so you'll have to trust me that it's super easy and really delicious! If you end up trying my turkey meatballs with mozzarella, I'd love to hear what you think!

Turkey Meatballs with Mozzarella

1/3 white onion 
1 green chilli
a handful of coriander
a handful of cherry plum tomatoes
70g mozzarella
a pinch of salt
a pinch of black peppercorns
80g spaghetti
315g turkey mince
1/2 jar tomato and basil sauce
low fat cooking oil/spray
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
This recipe makes 12 meatballs, suitable for two portions
ProPoints value per portion: 13ppts

Step 1
Turkey mince is one of my favourites as it's much lower in Weight Watchers propoints than beef or lamb. Pork is also another lower pointed mince meat that's a great alternative! That said, turkey mince can be fairly flavourless so I always like to add seasoning. You can finely chop your onion, green chilli and coriander by hand, but I love using my chopper which finely chops absolutely anything you put into it! Putting these ingredients into the mincemeat whilst they are raw, will cause them to not cook through in the meat. Pre-cooking and softening the onion, green chilli and coriander will flavour the meatballs, without having to eat raw onion and chilli. Once your ingredients are finely chopped, pop in a pan with 1cal cooking spray (or a light offering of oil) on a low heat, and cook until softened. 

Step 2
Whilst your onion, green chilli and coriander are cooking, pop a pan with water on the boil for your spaghetti. I always like to add a couple of drops of olive oil to the water, which prevents the spaghetti (or any type of pasta) sticking together. 

Step 3
Once the onion, green chilli and coriander have softened enough, take them off the heat and leave them to cool before mixing in with your mince meat. Turkey mince is pretty moist so once I've mixed everything in together, adding a touch of salt and pepper, I get the flour out. Now I have no idea whether you should do this with meatballs nor if I even used the right kind of flour - but it works for me! Adding a touch of flour to each meatball as I make it, it makes the meatballs stick together as well as making sure they don't fall apart when cooking. Pop a large pan on to heat, with a spray of 1cal oil; once the pan is hot, add your meatballs. I like to cook mine on a low heat for 15 minutes, turning every few minutes, although on a higher heat they will cook quicker. I prefer to cook on a low heat for longer, as I find the meatballs are then perfectly cooked inside, even more so on the outside. 

Turkey Meatballs with Mozzarella

Step 4
Once your meatballs are almost cooked, add your cherry plum tomatoes, cut lengthways, to the pan to soften. This should only take a few minutes, and you can season with a touch more salt and pepper, plus mixed herbs if you prefer. 

Step 5
Add your tomato sauce to the pan. I used a jar of tomato and basil sauce, however you can use any tomato pasta sauce, or even make your own! Add the sauce to the pan and cook for a few minutes until the sauce is warmed through. 

Step 6
Turn on your grill and allow to heat for a few minutes. Chop up your mozarella (the smaller pieces the better!) and add to your turkey meatballs and sauce, before popping under the grill for five minutes. Drain your spaghetti.

Step 7
Once the mozzarella looks fairly melted, take the pan from the grill, portion your spaghetti and your ready to serve! 

Turkey Meatballs with Mozzarella

Making 12 meatballs for two makes it easy to dish up equal portions, as well as the meatballs being pretty big! You could add a touch of yoghurt or a garnish, even have a side salad with it. I had mine as it was, to see how the meatballs came out. I loved the taste, perfectly seasoned but with a green chilli kick that's subtle but enough to make up for the lack of flavour in turkey mince. Usually I would have a 60g portion of pasta, but we were on our last bunch of spaghetti so we had 40g each which was more than enough. Having fresh cherry plum tomatoes in there adds a portion of veg in to the mix, too. Which is always good! I was full up for hours afterwards, we'll definitely be having it again soon! 

So that's my turkey meatballs with mozzarella - what do you think?!

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