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Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Parmesan Meatballs and Rice in Mozzarella Basil Sauce

I have had this recipe on my menu for several weeks now and finally got around to making it.  The sauce has a deep woodsy flavor to it and the meatballs are heavenly, I have a thing for meatballs...  I changed the recipe quite a bit just to fit our specific tastes and it turned out wonderfully.  We were all really happy that this dish was on the menu for tonight.
 
1 cup rice

Meatballs
1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
1/4 cup Italian breadcrumbs
1 cup finely freshly grated Parmesan
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp.garlic powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

Sauce
 
2 tbsp. butter
3 tsps. garlic powder 
2 tbsp. all purpose flour
2 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cups milk
2 tbsp. cornstarch
1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1/2 cups shredded mozzarella
1/4 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 cup loosely packed flat leaf parsley, minced
3 basil leafs (chopped finely)
 
Parmesan Meatballs:
Preheat oven to 350F degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper (for easy cleanup).
Add all of the meatball ingredients to a large bowl and mix until combined.
Form meatballs into heaping 1 tablespoon balls. (I got 20)
Bake for 20 -25 minutes or until cooked through.
Meanwhile, cook orzo pasta in generously salted water.
 
Sauce:
Whisk cornstarch with milk, set aside.
Melt butter over medium-low heat in a large skillet.
Add garlic and sauté for 60 seconds.
Sprinkle in flour and cook while stirring, then turn heat to low.
Slowly whisk in chicken broth, then milk, then heavy cream, stirring constantly until smooth.
Turn heat to medium high and bring the sauce to a simmer while stirring constantly.
Stir in dijon and spices (except parsley and basil) and continue to simmer until almost thickened, stirring occasionally.
Reduce heat to low and stir in Parmesan cheese until melted, followed by mozzarella cheese until melted.
Stir in fresh basil and fresh parsley, followed by orzo and meatballs, adding additional milk if necessary to reach desired consistency.
Taste and season with additional salt, pepper to taste.
Garnish with freshly grated Parmesan Cheese, and fresh parsley/basil and lemon (optional).
 
 

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