kale bacon meatballs in roasted tomato + beans

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flushing garden abundance all around!

I had to dig deep and bust out some mega batches of food tonight. We had guest from the Rockies visiting (former valley folks) who were dying for a taste of home grown real food with a serious paleo spin. I spent a couple hours slowly roasting green house tomatoes (which are exploding right now!) with hot peppers, onions and garlic along with parsley and basil, all from the garden.  After harvesting a huge basket of kale and chard I realized I had to cook these iron rich greens at least two different ways so I decided to make kale pork meat balls made with our own smokey bacon. The meatballs were served in a hearty rich roasted tomato base with white beans and yet more kale and chard. Satisfaction Guaranteed.

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This might seem like a lot of steps (and I am sure you could find short cuts if need be) but this dish is like a lazy sunday feeding  which involves very little effort and a whole lot of time. This recipe make a hearty meal for 6 so scale accordingly.

* I used a big basket full of tomatoes and ended up with about 4 cups of roasted tomatoes to set aside for another meal. another day.

I roasted dozens of tomatoes of different shapes, colours and sizes, along with a few sliced cloves of garlic, some chopped up hot peppers a good glug of organic veggie oil and seasoned everything with a handful of basil and parsley and S+P. At 400 degree oven roast the tomatoes until they are charred in parts, and all of the juices have thickened.

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Use an immersion blender to combine veggies into a thick country style sauce.

Add 4 cups of cooked whites bean to about an equal amount of the chunky sauce, return to oven along with some additional seasoning:

A splash each of red wine vinegar and molasses and return to a lower oven temp of 350 degrees.

Meanwhile roast meatballs

For meatball mixture, use your hands to combine all of the below and then form into small balls and bake on a cookie sheet until golden brown and cooked through, these can be made and formed ahead of time.

kale and bacon meatballs:

1 lb ground pork

1/2 lb finely minced smoked bacon

3 farm fresh eggs

S+P

2 hot peppers finely shopped

1/2 cup of chickpea flower

and 3 huge handfuls of chopped kale

2 minced garlic cloves

Now your off to the races.

Your beans and sauce should be smoking hot and smell divine, about 10 minutes before serving gently fold in your roasted meatballs along with a huge bowl full of chopped swiss chard and yet more kale, return to oven for 10 minutes and serve hot garnished with some more finely chopped herbs.

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