Because you know…Pumpkin Everything! Seriously, what can’t you put pumpkin in? These were super easy, and just pumpkin enough to satisfy my craving for more festive flavor. Did I mention my love for winter squash? Anyway, I used a little leftover “Pumpkin Sauce” from another dinner this week, which I will post soon. Yes, I’m posting a recipe using one of the ingredients from it, before I post the….nevermind. The pumpkin sauce I made was as follows:
- 1 cup organic pumpkin
- 1/2 cup organic strained tomato
- 1/4 cup organic vegetable broth
- Sage, cinnamon, thyme, allspice
So anyway, I had some of that stuff in the fridge and used it for the meatballs. It added a bit more flavor and strength. If you don’t feel like making the sauce, just add a bit more pumpkin, and more spice.
•1/4 cup pumpkin sauce
•1/4 cup pumpkin
•1 lb grass-fed ground beef
•sage, salt, pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon
Then I formed medium-sized meatballs, and put them in a 9×9 glass pan that I lined with foil. As you can see, depending on the size, it should make about 9 medium meatballs.
Then I baked them at 425 for 10-15 minutes, drained any liquid from the pan, and cooked an additional 5-10 minutes. I just ate them plain, but you can put them over spaghetti squash, or use more of the “Pumpkin Sauce” on them.
Oh good, as my cold subsides (it’s almost gone, though my sense of smell hasn’t returned as of yet… Well, slightly) I can get back to normal in the kitchen. Tonight’s dinner happened because I forgot to thaw fish, and the boyfriend forgot to take it out when I asked him from work. I had some mashed pumpkin in the fridge that I had prepared the night before, so I was really just looking for a good protein. I ran to the store and picked up some organic free-ranged chicken breast tenders, and whipped up this easy preparation in about 15 minutes.
- 1-1.5 lbs chicken breast tenders
- 1/4 cup organic balsamic vinegar
- 3 tablespoons organic stone ground mustard
- 2 small, sweet apples (chopped)
- 1 onion (chopped or sliced)
- 4 cloves garlic (chopped)
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- A little salt, pepper, thyme, and cayenne pepper
In a pan, heat some coconut oil. Add the onions, garlic, and apples, and sauté for a few minutes. Use a pair of kitchen scissors to cut the chicken into chunks and put them in the pot as well. Then add the balsamic, mustard, seasonings, and stir. Cover and cook for a few minutes. Uncover, stir, and continue cooking until the chicken is cooked through.
Beef Shank, I like it. definitely suited for the Crock Pot. It’s a relatively cheap cut, and is basically a hunk of leg, cross-cut, so you get a marrow bone in the middle. Mine was 2 pounds, and the meal fed 3 people. I think it came out really good, and I’ll definitely make it again. Now, I must confess, that I am fighting a cold….so my sense of taste is severely dulled, and my sense of smell is non-existent. This makes judging the outcome of a meal totally impossible, as I couldn’t taste the full flavor and forget about subtle notes.
According to my boyfriend, it was very “beefy”, earthy and meaty tasting, which I love, but my boyfriend isn’t always a fan of. The marrow bone, and fat from the shank definitely provide a richness, so if you are a fan of that, you should like working with cross-cut shank. He tells me today that he’s not really a fan of beef as a flavor, He likes more heavily spiced and marinated dishes that mask the beefy flavor. Maybe next time I’ll try it with chicken and get his reaction then. His brother was over, and loved it. Normally the reaction I get from him is “All you guys have is strange hippy food” or “This is pretty good for hippy food”. It’s so funny to me because I’m just eating real food….real vegetables, real meats. So hippy food just means – different from the Standard American Diet of soda and convenience…He’s 17, it’s ok. He licked the bowl clean and in a funny voice went “Moooaaaarrrrr!” and proceeded to seconds…..I’m going to go by his judgement on this one. I’ll make it again when I get my senses back….
Anyway, here are the ingredients:
- 2 lb beef cross-cut shank
- 1 can Trader Joe’s Light Coconut milk
- 1 cup Shiitake mushrooms, Sliced
- 2 large caps (4 small caps) Portobello mushrooms, Sliced
- 1 Onion
- 4 cloves Garlic
- 1 pint Chicken broth
- 1/2 cup Balsamic vinegar
- 3 Carrots
- 2 Turnips
- 4 stalks Celery
- Salt, pepper, rosemary, thyme, allspice
Chop vegetables and put carrots, onion, and some of the turnip and celery on bottom. Brown meat, and place in crock pot. Season, and add in the remaining vegetables, mushrooms, garlic, and liquids. Cook on low. for 10 hours. Don’t forget to eat (or mix into the stew/soup) the lovely marrow from the bone. When it’s done you should be able to easily shred the meat with a fork.