Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Chicken Meatballs with Braised Lemon and Kale

Wow this week has been a whirlwind I can't believe it is already Wednesday...I need more time!  This is how the holidays feel every year to me and it takes a lot wrapping up the year at work too.  Last weekend was very nice and relaxing, we went out to some craft fairs and did some holiday shopping and watched many Christmas movies which was perfect for the very rainy weather here in PDX.  If you are from the NW I'm sure you have heard about all the severe flooding we are having and it is causing many landslides, sink holes, and falling trees.  Gotta love this crazy weather!  We also went and got our Christmas tree last weekend and it sure is a funny one but of course I love it (pictured below).  Last night one of my good friends came over to make dinner with me and I hadn't seen her since August which was before my Europe trip and engagement, so we obviously had a lot of catching up to do.  Among all the talking we did manage to adapt this recipe and it was crazy delicious...I wish I had more right now.

Serves 2-3

The Ingredients
2 tablespoons bacon fat, divided
2 medium shallots, minced, divided
3 scallions, minced (all parts), plus thinly sliced green tops for garnish
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 pound ground chicken meat
1 teaspoon kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, plus more
1 lemon, very thinly sliced and seeds removed
2 cups chicken broth
1 large bunch curly kale, destemmed

The Process
1.  Heat 1 Tbsp. bacon fat in a large heavy pot over medium heat. Add shallot, scallion, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring constantly until softened and fragrant, about 6 minutes.

2.  Add 1/3 of ground chicken and cook just until cooked through, breaking up any clumps. Transfer to a medium bowl and let cool slightly. Add remaining chicken meat, salt, and several grindings of black pepper. Mix just to combine.

3.  Wipe out pot and add remaining Tbsp. bacon fat. Heat over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Form meat mixture into 8 meatballs each about 2–2 1⁄2-inch in diameter and add to pot (mixture will be soft). Cook until light golden brown on all sides, 6–8 minutes total. Remove meatballs to a plate; set aside.

4.  Add remaining shallot and lemon slices and cook until lemon slices are tender and starting to turn light golden brown, about 2 minutes. Add chicken broth and return meatballs to pot.

5.  Bring to simmer, lower heat and cover. Cook meatballs until cooked through, 8-10 minutes. Add kale to pot, and cook until tender and bright green, 4–5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and remove from heat. Divide kale and sauce among 2 shallow bowls, topping with meatballs and lemon slices. Garnish with sliced scallion tops and serve.

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