When I was growing up, I always got to pick my birthday dinner. Apparently I was not a very creative* child because I only ever picked one of two things; chicken picatta or chicken parmesan. Both dishes remain two of my very favorites. My birthday is tomorrow, so I am once again faced with making this difficult decision.
I used turkey to made this, only because it was what I had on hand already and ground chicken did not entice me enough to make an extra trip to the store. Even with the turkey, these meatballs tasted exactly like the rich and flavorful parmesan dish that I love so much. I generally find making meatballs sort of gross (I wear gloves), but all things considered making meatballs were still easier than making traditional chicken parm with all the dredging and frying and cooking. I think I might be sticking with meatball in the future.
* – My lack of creativity can be further illustrated by the fact that my teddy bear’s name was ‘Teddy’ and my other favorite stuffed animal, which was a big bear, was named ‘Big Bear’. I was a very literal child.
Turkey Parmesan Meatballs
From Dinner a Love Story.
- 1 1/4 pounds ground turkey
- 1/2 cup breadcrumbs (I used Kinnikinnick Gluten Free Panko)
- 1/2 onion, finely diced
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
- 1/2 cup Parmesan
- salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 egg, whisked
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 jar storebought pasta sauce (I recommend Trader Joe’s Roasted Garlic or Barilla Olive)
- about 4 ounces fresh mozzarella (I used sliced mozzarella)
- Preheat oven to 400°F, setting rack to upper third part of oven.
- In a large bowl, using your hands, gently mix together first 8 ingredients (turkey through egg). Shape into balls (somewhere between a golf ball and a tennis ball) and place a few inches from each other on a foil-lined baking sheet. In a small bowl, mix two tablespoons of your pasta sauce with olive oil. Brush this mixture on top of each meatball. Bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove meatballs from oven, spoon some sauce on top of each meatball, and cover each with a slice of cheese. Broil another 3 to 5 minutes until cheese is bubbly and golden. Heat remaining sauce in a small saucepan. Serve meatballs with sauce.