PERFECT POLPETTINE!

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PORK, LEMON AND THYME POLPETTINE

As Nigel Slater describes them in his Kitchen Diaries 1 – ‘a meatball to beat them all!’

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This is one of my favourite supper dishes of the meat variety. Perfect served with noodles.

Please give these a go. You will be so glad you did!

INGREDIENTS

70gm white breadcrumbs

500 gm pork mince

A lemon

Parsley leaves – large handful

Several sprigs of fresh thyme

2 heaped tbsp of grated parmesan

A little flour

Optional – 5 anchovy fillets

Olive oil

40 gm butter

200 ml chicken stock

METHOD

Pop the mince and breadcrumbs into a large mixing bowl. Grate the zest of the lemon into the mixture then halve the lemon and squeeze in all the juice. Add chopped parsley leaves and the thyme stripped from their sprigs. Now add the parmesan – and the anchovy fillets chopped – or of not a good grind of sea salt. Now add several good grinds of black pepper.

Using a dessert spoon make about 18 small balls of the mixture. Sprinkle the flour on a board and add each meatball to it as you make them. 

Roll them lightly in the flour. Add the oil to a wok – or large frying pan. Fry the balls on a medium heat for about 4 or 5 minutes, until crispy golden. 

Lower the heat and let them cook through for about another 8 minutes. Try not to move them now.

Then spoon off most of the fat and add the hot chicken stock. Leave to bubble for 2 or 3 minutes.

I now added some finely shredded raw vegetables – bits I had left over – a few bits of broccoli, a couple of cabbage leaves, half a carrot. Whatever you fancy! Or you could leave them out too! Tis up to you. 

I also now added my lightly cooked noodles to the dish and stirred round gently to soak up the flavours.

Thank you again to Nigel Slater for this fab recipe idea. Magnifico!

And a Happy Birthday to him for April 10th!

 

Slow pan fried potatoes with mushrooms. thyme and taleggio

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This is a fabulous supper dish – great on its own or accompanying chicken, sausages, pork loin, even salmon. The flavours and textures are hard to beat. So simple, so satisfying and somehow something that feels as if you have spent a lot more time on it than you will have. I saw this recipe first on a Nigel Slater cookery programme – he is a real wizard with tasty supper dishes.

Taleggio is perfect for this – a Northern Italian soft cheese that melts to unctuous perfection. Fontina would work also. Do not remove the skin – there lurks so much of the fragrance and the flavour!

Ingredients

For 2 as a main – 4 as a small side dish. I used 750 gm potatoes for 3 of us last night.

500 gm new potatoes

1 medium onion, peeled and thinly sliced

2 tbsps olive oil

50 gm slice of butter

2 cloves of garlic peeled and sliced thinly

A good handful or two of mushrooms of choice sliced

Thyme

100 gm Taleggio

Method

Slice the potatoes into pound coin size slices – some lengthways some across. Heat the oil and butter in a sauté pan or large frying pan, and once the butter has melted, add the onion. Fry over a low to medium heat gently until the onion begins to become soft and pale gold, about ten minutes.

Then add the garlic, potatoes, mushrooms plus a good sprinkle of dried thyme or a small handful of fresh thyme leaves, some salt and black pepper. Stir gently to get all the potatoes coated in the oil and herbs.

Turn the heat as low as you can. Pop a lid on for 40 to 50 minutes, stirring every now and then. The potatoes will turn soft and golden – but not crispy – you do not want them to go crispy! – add the thin slices of Taleggio over the potatoes.. cover the pan again – it will have melted after a few minutes. 

Bring to the table and serve from the pan!