This weekend was a lot of fun. I got to play with two new kitchen toys (separately): the meat grinder attachment for my Kitchen-Aid and our new Omega masticating juicer! Both were a lot of fun and brought good results.
The meat grinder was an anniversary gift from my husband. He knows me well enough to realize that I would always prefer some cool kitchen toy rather than a traditional piece of jewelry. He gave it to me right before his trip to New Zealand so I figured I would wait for his return to try it out. I ended up making chicken meatballs with 1lb of (antibiotic free) chicken breasts from The Fresh Market. As scared as I was to use to grinder, it turned out to be super easy. My only mistake was to decide to grind it twice. The first time around went ridiculously fast but when I tried to grind it again, it kept getting stuck inside. Next time, one grind will suffice.
I mixed two recipes that I found online to make some succulent teriyaki chicken meatballs. I used the meatball recipe from Life’s Ambrosia and the sauce recipe from A Healthful Gluten-Free Life. The result was fabulous. My pound of ground chicken gave me 15 meatballs (it obviously varies depending on their size) I started by browning the meatballs in a pan, then added the sauce and cooked on low for approximately 20 minutes. I made whole wheat couscous as a side because I wasn’t patient enough to make rice.
The juicer was Jeff’s idea. Although I watched Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead over a year ago and wanted to try juicing then, I ended up forgetting about it. But Jeff met someone who talked him into trying it out. As he tends to be super picky but enjoys the pricey Odwalla Green Machine drinks, we figured it could become a great way for him to add more fruits and vegetables to his daily meals. And I am definitely happy to try it too! On Friday, we tried the machine for the first time. We threw everything in, without following a recipe: beets, kale, Swiss chard, collards, carrots, apples, cucumbers,etc. The result, although it was pretty, really grossed me out. Today, we decided to follow a recipe instead of going with the flow (which was clearly a bad idea). We ended up making two recipes: Green Juice with Grapefruit (hubby’s choice), and Veggie Juice (my choice). The results were much nicer than Friday’s disaster. Although some of the flavors will be an acquired taste, it is still pretty tasty and a great way to get a good nutrient and vitamin intake.
I also plan to try using the leftover pulp to make sure we don’t waste the good fiber. A quick Pinterest search showed a variety of uses for it, including crackers, bread, muffins, broth, veggie burgers, etc. This could be fun!