Posts

Dumpling Meatballs

dumpling meatballs

I love all meatballs. For some reason, anything that can be made into a ball just tastes good to me. I remember when my kids were young, I would get them to eat foods by making them bitesize and sticking a toothpick into each one so they could easily grab whatever it was. And, that’s my favorite way to eat these meatball…  I guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. So, when I saw a great recipe from Nom Nom Paleo for a meatball I hadn’t yet experimented with, I just had to try it. So, thank you Michelle… these dumpling meatballs are awesome!

For those of you who know me, you know that for the month of October, I changed up my diet and I ate plant-based. I learned so much, and I enjoyed so much of that experience. Staying away from animal proteins forced me to be so much more creative with my plant-based meals, and now I love those meals even more.

But, now it’s November. And, while I do intend top stay probably about 80% plant-based, I was looking to cook up a very different type of meal. These dumpling meatballs are made with a combination of shrimp and pork. So, haha, my first non plant-based meal had both seafood and meat in it. You’d think it might be a shock to my system, but you’d be wrong… these were awesome.

Oh, and the reason they are called dumpling meatballs, is because they taste like the inside of the steamed dumplings you get at Chinese restaurants. Yum.

And, they are grain free and dairy free. And have so many healing ingredients. Win-win for me.

For another great healthy meatball recipe, try my Paleo Cheese-Stuffed Meatballs.

dumpling meatballsdumpling meatballs

Here are some of the great healing ingredients in these dumpling meatballs:

I love mushrooms. In Chinese medicine, mushrooms ARE medicine. They are herbs. They are one of the most healing foods around. In China, mushrooms have been used for many years as part of a natural cancer treatment. They are one of the best immune-boosting foods around. I used dried shiitakes in this recipe. Shiitakes are probably the variety of mushroom that I use most. I love the way they taste and they help lower blood pressure and cholesterol. These shrooms also promote healing and have been found to fight tumors. In Asia, shiitake mushrooms are often fed to a patient who has just had surgery to help the healing process.

Pork strengthens the digestive system, helps with constipation, and can moisten a dry cough and other dryness in the body. It’s also good to strengthen your qi and give you energy.

Many of my friends used to stay away from shrimp because they were afraid that eating them raised cholesterol levels. Now, research shows that shrimp actually can lower triglycerides because they are rich in Omega-3s. And, they are high in protein and low in calories, so really, they are a pretty good thing. In Chinese medicine, shrimp are actually recommended as a food to promote longevity because they nourish the kidneys, and in Chinese medicine, the kidneys are the key to life. Shrimp are great to boost libido, lessen some lower back pain and weakness, and they can help new moms with lactation.

Scallions, as I tell you often, are one of my favorites. In Chinese medicine, the root of the scallion is a healing herb (Cong Bai). I always keep scallions on hand in my refrigerator so that I can whip up a batch of cold and flu fighting tea (scallion roots and ginger) the second anyone feels that scratchy throat coming on. It helps the body sweat out toxins. Scallions are antiviral and antibacterial; they are good for the common cold and general nasal congestion — just don’t eat too many if you have a fever.

Cilantro is also known as Chinese Parsley. It is good for the common cold, indigestion, and energy flow in the body. An old Chinese remedy for the common cold and even for measles was to drink cilantro and mint tea. Cilantro is one of those herbs you either love or hate; I’m a lover…

dumpling meatballs

Dumpling Meatballs
Author: 
Recipe type: meatballs, Asian, Chinese, paleo, whole30
Cuisine: recipe adapted from: Nom Nom Paleo
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
These meatballs taste like the insides of Chinese dumplings! And there's a bunch of healing ingredients in them!
Ingredients
  • ¼ oz dried shiitake mushrooms, rehydrated in water for about 30 mins, then stems discarded and caps finely chopped
  • ½ lb cleaned raw shrimp, finely chopped
  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1-1/2 Tbs chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 Tbs coconut aminos (or substitute liquid aminos or soy sauce)
  • sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • ¼ tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tsp lemon grass paste (I used a lemongrass paste with chili sauce, so option here to mix in some spicy hot sauce or chili peppers)
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 400°F.
  2. Line a large baking tray with parchment paper.
  3. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl, and smush it all up with your hands.
  4. Form the mixture into largish balls (I made 15 balls).
  5. Place the balls onto the lined baking tray and bake until cooked through, about 15 minutes.
  6. Eat with pasta or on top of salad, or my favorite way -- on top of a big bowl of steamed fresh greens.
  7. Enjoy!

dumpling meatballs

Vietnamese Meatball Bowls

These Vietnamese Meatball Bowls are deliciously Asian flavored… they will make you smile!

Vietnamese meatball bowls

Almost all meatballs are awesome. But these meatballs are extra awesome. They are made with pork and infused with some traditional Vietnamese flavors. They are bit-sized, juicy, mouth watering, amazingly flavorful meatballs. (I do realize how over the top that sounds, but I’m sticking with it…)

Almost all food tastes better when it’s turned into a “bowl”. If you haven’t yet jumped on the bowl bandwagon, don’t wait even another minute. A “bowl” is a complete meal served in… a bowl! It’s extra special because you get so many great flavors together in one place. And they are so easy to customize to reflect your own particular tastes.

One of my favorite food bloggers, Lindsay at Pinch Of Yum, posted her awesome recipe for Banh Mi Bowls With Lemongrass Meatballs. I found that recipe so inspiring that I created this recipe for Vietnamese Meatball Bowls.

This bowl has it all. It’s got deliciously moist pork meatballs. The meatballs are on top of spiced cauliflower rice. And crispy pea pods. And a few different kinds of peppers. And fresh aromatic herbs. It’s got so much flavor. And it’s grain-free and dairy-free. It’s paleo and Whole30 friendly. And, it’s easy to make. And it tastes great as leftovers the next day. Is that enough? I’m getting hungry again just writing this.

If you are looking for another great meatball recipe, try my Lamb Meatballs With Herbs And Kale recipe.

Vietnamese meatball bowlsVietnamese meatball bowls

Here are some of the great ingredients in this Vietnamese Meatball Bowls:

Pork strengthens the digestive system, helps with constipation, and can moisten a dry cough and other dryness in the body. It’s also good to strengthen your qi and give you energy.

Lemongrass is great for lots of digestive issues; it can help with stomach pains and vomiting. It’s also good to include lemongrass in your diet when you have a cold and it’s been known to help people with arthritic joint pain.

Garlic is amazing in its antiviral and antibacterial capabilities. Garlic is actually a Chinese herb (Da Suan). It’s used to kill toxins and parasites and also to reduce swelling in the body. It’s what I call a great “A” herb: anesthetic, antibacterial, anti fungal, antioxidant, antiviral, etc….

I use cauliflower for breads, crusts, rice… everything. It can be used in so many forms… and, it’s really good for you. In Chinese medicine we use it to aid in digestion and help with constipation. It contains a healthy amount of Vitamin B, Vitamin K and Omega-3 fatty acids and can help fight cancer and cardiovascular disease. Cauliflower also helps the body with detoxification. So, as far as I’m concerned, the more the merrier.

Scallions, as I tell you often, are one of my favorites. In Chinese medicine, the root of the scallion is a healing herb (Cong Bai). I always keep scallions on hand in my refrigerator so that I can whip up a batch of cold and flu fighting tea (scallion roots and ginger) the second anyone feels that scratchy throat coming on. It helps the body sweat out toxins. Scallions are antiviral and antibacterial; they are good for the common cold and general nasal congestion — just don’t eat too many if you have a fever.

Cilantro is also known as Chinese Parsley. It is good for the common cold, indigestion, and energy flow in the body. An old Chinese remedy for the common cold and even for measles was to drink cilantro and mint tea. Cilantro is one of those herbs you either love or hate; I’m a lover…

Mint is a Chinese herb called Bo He. It’s one of the best things to fight a cold, sore throat, or fever and it’s good for some abdominal pains too.

Vietnamese meatball bowls

Vietnamese Meatball Bowls
Author: 
Recipe type: bowl, meatballs, cauliflower rice
Cuisine: Recipe adapted from: Pinch Of Yum
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Moist and flavorful pork meatballs sit atop spiced cauliflower rice and are surrounded by crisp snow peas and peppers.
Ingredients
  • For meatballs:
  • 1 lb. ground pork
  • 1 Tbs lemongrass paste (or you can buy a jar of sliced lemongrass and mince it up really fine)
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 Tbs sriracha
  • 1 Tbs liquid aminos (or substitute soy sauce or fish sauce)
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • For rice:
  • 2 cups cauliflower rice (buy it already riced or place one head of cauliflower florets in your food processor and pulse it just until it's like rice)
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 3 scallions, sliced
  • ½ cup vegetable or chicken broth
  • For the bowls:
  • fresh mint leaves, roughly chopped (I like about 2 Tbs for each bowl)
  • fresh cilantro leaves, roughly chopped (I like about 1 Tbs for each bowl)
  • pappadew peppers, sliced (as many as you like)
  • fresh pea pods or snap peas (as much as you like), briefly sauteed or steamed (they should still be crisp)
  • 1 hot red pepper, sliced (or more if you like things spicy)
  • 2 limes, zested and cut into wedges
  • 1 jar of pickled vegetables (I used pickled ginger carrots, but there are so many awesome varieties available).
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F.
  2. Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
  3. Combine all of the meatball ingredients in a large bowl. Mush it all together with your hands and form into small balls. Place the balls on the tray, so that they are not touching each other.
  4. Place the tray in the oven and bake 10 minutes. Turn the meatballs over and bake an additional 5 minutes, or until the meatballs are cooked through.
  5. Place the cauliflower rice in a pot with the turmeric, salt and pepper, and broth. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring often, until the rice is just softened a bit.
  6. Using a slotted spoon, divide the cauliflower rice among the bowls. Top with meatballs and surround with the remaining ingredients.
  7. Enjoy!

Vietnamese meatball bowls