July 07, 2011

Pork and Pine Nut Meatballs

"What are we having for dinner?"

My guess is that if you are the one who is in charge of menu planning and preparing the meals this question is asked EVERY. DAY.

Not knowing what to make for dinner I turned to my cookbooks and began flipping through them while Itty Bitty was napping. Surprisingly, I didn't have to flip for too long and my fingers didn't dry out too much. Flat Belly Diet! Cookbook to the rescue. I came across a recipe for Pork and Pine Nut Meatballs and had all of the ingredients on hand.

The last time I made meatballs they were the turkey meatballs for the subs. They set the bar incredibly high. Those meatballs were anything but healthy. These Pork and Pine Nut Meatballs weren't as rave worthy but they were delicious for a healthier meatball.

Extra lean ground pork is hard to find in most grocery stores so it's nice being able to put your food processor to work and make your own. It literally look me less than five minutes to put these meatballs together thanks to the aid of the food processor. Pine nuts, pork tenderloin, and spices are ground together, rolled into balls, and then baked for 25 minutes in a 375 degree oven.

Taste wise they are a little bit dry but this is entirely my fault. I accidentally deleted my timer on the microwave and had to guess how much time was left. I decided to just keep them in the oven until the macaroni and cheese was finished. Dry but still flavorful.

When I want a guilty pleasure I'll go for the turkey meatballs but when I'm trying to eat healthier I'll come back to this recipe.

Makes 4 Servings

Stars of the Show:
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • 1 lb pork tenderloin, trimmed, and cut into small chunks
  • 1 1/2 tsp crumbled dried sage
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • olive oil in a spritzer
And Action:

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Coat a large baking pan with cooking spray. Set aside.

Pulse the pine nuts in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade until coarsely chopped. Add the pork, sage, garlic, vinegar, salt, and pepper. Pulse until evenly ground.

Divide the mixture into 12 equal portions and roll into meatballs. Arrange on the prepared pan. Spritz lightly with the oil.

Bake for about 25 minutes or until cooked through.

Nutritional Information Per Serving:

Calories: 254
Protein: 26 g
Fat: 16 g
Saturated Fat: 2 g
Sodium: 203 mg
Fiber: 1 g


Pegasuslegend said...

I love that you put sage in this recipe sounds very flavorful with pine nuts!

Pretend Chef said...

Claudia - The sage is a key flavor note in these meatballs.

purabi naha said...

These days I'm really concentrating on making perfect meatballs. Yours is a great idea. This looks beautiful and yummy! Bookmarked.

Pretend Chef said...

purabi naha - If you want a perfect meatball, in my opinion, I think the turkey meatballs are much better than these pork meatballs. You should check out the other recipe as well.

Foodness Gracious said...

These look really tasty. Actually its the opposite in my house, no one asks me whats for dinner ever! I just make what I like dish it up and they eat it...simple but that would drive me crazy, I'd like to know at breakfast time!!

Peggy said...

I've never seen pine nuts added into meatballs before... I just may have to try this next time I'm feelin' a meatball!

Pretend Chef said...

Foodness Gracious - Haha! I grew up asking my mama everyday at breakfast what dinner was. Food is my first love. Sigh.

Peggy - I think you'll like these.

Carolyn said...

I love pine nuts, but never thought of adding them to meatballs. Wonderful!

Pretend Chef said...

Carolyn - Must try!

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