Through no conscious decision, perhaps more a subconscious nod to being more sustainable in my eating habits, I don’t eat meat on that regular a basis these days, however on occasion I do just have that hankering for something ravishingly red meat centric.
Now in honour of our environment and those animals that we will be consuming I will only ever purchase and suggest others purchase organic, grass fed animal products. Not only does this ensure a higher welfare standard for those animals whilst they are alive, but as a consequence the nutritional profile we receive is entirely different to intensively raised livestock. Those natural farming habits are also less damaging to our world.
Now with all that said and done it’s on to these divine little baked beauties! Packed with herbs, fresh lemon and more they are the perfect light version of a meatball to be enjoyed on a warm summer’s evening.
I have chosen to pair them here with a celeriac mash and greens but should your mind be focused on pasta then by all means honour that calling!
For the meatballs
- 400g organic grass fed beef mince.
- 1 onion
- 2 celery sticks.
- 2 cloves of garlic.
- 1/2 fennel bulb.
- 1/2 large bunch parsley & a large handful fresh dill.
- Zest of 1 lemon.
- Salt & pepper.
For the mash & vegetables
- 1 medium celeriac
- 2 small potatoes
- Asparagus, peas & extra parsley
- Preheat your oven to 200C.
- Peel the celeriac & wash the potatoes, cut both into similar size chunks (~2cm cubes) & add to a pan. Cover with cold water, bring to a boil & simmer for 10 minutes until an inserted knife comes out clean.
- Meanwhile finely dice the fennel, onion & celery, add to a sauté pan with 1/2 tsp coconut oil. Sweat on low for 15 minutes until soft, stirring occasionally.
- When the celeriac & potato are ready drain & blend until smooth in a food processor. Pop back into the pan & leave to 1 side to heat before serving.
- Crush the garlic, add to the pan with the fennel etc, stir through for 2 mins then decant into a large bowl. Leave to cool for 5 mins.
- Finely chop the herbs & add to the veg with the lemon zest. Mix well.
- Crumble in the beef mince & use your hands to combine well. Roll into balls & arrange in a dish.
- Bake for 15 mins, turn & bake for a final 10 mins.
- 5 minutes before your meatballs will be done bring a pan of water to a boil & blanch your peas & asparagus for 2 minutes, & heat your mash on low stirring regularly.
- Serve topped with some extra parsley leaves.