Garlic Pasta + Spicy Meatballs + Green Beans

January 12, 2011 § 3 Comments

These meatballs are genius.  My attitude towards spicy food has become steadily more positive over the last year or so, due in part to being around people who cook spicier things than I was used to, and these meatballs were just exquisitely hot and full of flavor.  We changed the recipe around a little bit to fit our own tastes (read: MORE spices, MORE garlic), and even people who have lower heat tolerances thought they were great.  If nothing else, they will certainly warm you up on these cold winter nights!

The meatballs were also a great accompaniment to the garlic pasta, which was simple but very yummy.  At some point I want to concoct a pasta sauce involving the leftover chipotle chilies and/or the adobo sauce that they are packed in; I think it would be a fantastic complement, particularly since the pasta got a tad dry and could have used a bit of a kick.  Stay tuned for that sometime in the coming months!

So, let’s get going.  We’ve modified both recipes, but the originals can be found here.

Spicy Meatballs
3/4 lb ground turkey
1 hot Italian chicken sausage (casing removed)
1 egg
3 chipotle chilies in adobo sauce, minced
1/2 c jalapeño cheddar cheese, grated
1/4 c plain bread crumbs (we used steel-cut oats and blended them until they resembled bread crumbs)
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

This is super easy, guys.  Preheat your oven to 400.  Put all of your ingredients in a large mixing bowl and mash them all together until they’re really well combined.

not mashed... yet

Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with a nonstick cooking spray (or brush with canola oil) to prevent too much sticking.  Then form the meatball mixture into balls and place on the baking sheet.  They don’t really spread much so you don’t need to worry about that.

oven-ready balls of meat!

Bake them for 15-20 minutes, or until they’re cooked through and slightly browned.

baked and ready for eating
While the meatballs are in progress, you can get started on part 2…

Garlic Pasta
1/4 c olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb of your favorite pasta (we went with linguine)
3/4 c Parmesan cheese, grated
salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes to taste

Cook the pasta until al dente.  Meanwhile, add the olive oil to a small pan, and when it’s heated, add the garlic.  Cook until lightly golden, 10-15 minutes or so.

golden garlic

When the pasta is finished, drain and return it to the pot; add the garlic and olive oil and toss well.  Add the Parmesan as well and mix again.  Add more olive oil if it’s needed to coat the pasta sufficiently.

super garlicky and cheesy

That’s it!

Side: Green Beans Amandine

Also, I should mention that we decided we needed some kind of vegetable to go with this meal, so we made a quick side that is fantastic and super easy: chop up some almonds, chop up some garlic (one or two cloves is usually sufficient), and prep some green beans.  Put a little oil in a pan and let it heat up; toss in your garlic and sautée it for a minute or so, then add the almonds and let them toast for a couple of minutes.  Finally, add in your green beans and sautée until bright green and still snappy.

just about finished

Throw them all together on a plate (…or, I mean, eat out of the pots and pans, but we do pretend to be civilized here…) and enjoy!

finished products. nom.

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