Culinary Bucket List 2014 ~ JANUARY!

Hey there and Happy New Year! As usual, it’s been a while since my last post..you know..holidays, family and life has kept me away BUT..one of my goals this year is to visit you all more often. 🙂

My friend, Kim, came up with a brilliant idea of Culinary Bucket list for this year. She and I will be making one or two dishes every month this year..each of these dishes has to be something we have never made before. Fun, right?? 🙂 I am excited about this and can’t believe it took me three weeks into the first month to get started!

Check Kims blog out ~ she started with Chinese ~ mmm mmm delicious!! http://tryingforbabys.wordpress.com/2014/01/21/culinary-bucket-list-january/

Me? I started with Swedish Meatballs. I have been wanting to make these bad boys since I read this blog: http://www.thelondoner.me/2013/12/swedish-meatball-recipe.html

Looking at the pictures from this blog you can see why I was so excited to start here! The color and the texture of these photos you can just TASTE how amazing those balls must be!! 🙂

On the way home from the office I stopped at a local butcher shop ( http://site.themeatshopaz.com/Home.html ) I have been meaning to try for the past few months. What better excuse to actually stop in today?? I needed 1lb of ground beef (I opted for the local grass fed beef) and 1lb ground pork (apparently they don’t grass feed the pigs because that was not an option but…it was local pig).

I was greeted and served quickly BUT I was disappointed. The meat was FROZEN! I said, “Oh..it’s frozen, you don’t have anything fresh”? “No, always frozen”.

Noted…

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I got home around 17:30, unwrapped the meat, set the meat in the cast iron pan (I was told setting the meat in a metal pan helps defrost meat faster) and waited and waited and waited. While I was waiting, I set the produce and what not on the counter, washed up the potatoes, cut them up and threw them in a pan.

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Here’s the meat…STILL FROZEN!

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Once I had the potatoes cut up, in the pot of water and set to boil..I decided…”Kiah, do you want to go for a run?”

We went for a run, or rather WOG (walk/jog). Just a short one, we couldn’t go for too long..I was cooking! When I got home the potatoes were done and Jason had taken control of those.

I hate to admit THIS but…he also had to put the meat in the microwave to defrost. THE HORROR!!! Oh well, what’s done is done..

Back from the wog, I washed up and got to chopping up the onion, melted the butter and cooked the onion for a couple of minutes.

Back at the mixing bowl, I added nutmeg, two eggs, cooked onion and sea salt to the meat. I used an electric mixer to whip the meat (I read, using a mixer makes the balls smoother).

After it is all mixed I used my hands to make the meatballs – next time I think I will use an ice cream scooper. I forgot about that tip until just now.. :/

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In the cast iron skillet I melted 1 TBSP of real salted butter. Once I the butter was melted I placed the balls in the pan to brown.

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It took about 10-12 minutes for me to feel like they were cooked ~ because I mixed pork in the meatballs ~ I felt it was NOT ok to have ANY pink..That’s just me..pork and chicken I tend to over cook in fear of getting sick. Just sayin’

OH! While the meatballs were cooking..I heated the oven to 200F

After the meatballs were done, I placed them in an oven safe (aka another cast iron skillet) pan and placed them in the oven to keep warm.

To make the gravy, I used the butter and fat that was left over from the meatball cook, added 1 tbsp of flour, 10oz of chicken broth, 2 tbsp of Worcester sauce, 1 tbsp of mustard and 1 tbsp of honey boiled and stirred for a few moments and then added a pint of heavy whipping cream. 

After a few minutes I took the meatballs from the oven and added them to the gravy.

Voila!

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DINNER…is served 🙂

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It was good. Not the best I’ve made and will need some practice in regards to spices. My opinion..needs more salt. The meatballs were not as soft as I had expected. I will, one day, figure out how to make them smooth.

Feel free to give me advice!! 😀