Sunday, December 16, 2012

Meaty Meatballs (AIP)

Oh, meatballs. Little balls of yummy, meaty goodness. And sadly, never Paleo- or Primal-approved when prepared in the traditional manner. Luckily, there are several recipes for flour- and grain-free meatballs. But sadly, most of them call for almond flour. Bleck! I know, I know, it's a good protein, and it makes some of the recipes doable, and I should be rejoicing that I can enjoy meatballs once again!

NO! No almond flour here! This girl just can't do it. I've tried. I don't care for the texture or the unnecessarily overly-filling aspect of almond flour. Plus, it detracts from the true flavor of the meat in recipes like this one. So down with the almond-flour. It has it's uses and purposes, but oh no, just not here! Instead, we're going with a little bit of a veggie filler to pull everything together, and as long as you drain off the excess moisture from the veggies, the results are quite nice.

Meaty Meatballs
1 lb ground beef
½ onion, roughly chopped
1 large stick celery, roughly chopped
½ large carrot, peeled and roughly chopped
3 cloves garlic
2 tbsp fresh basil leaves
1 tbsp fresh parsley leaves
2 tsp Italian herb seasoning (make sure its just herbs!)
1 tsp salt (or more to taste)
½ tsp black pepper (omit for AIP)

Preheat oven to 435°F. In a large bowl, add ground beef and eggs and mix to combine. In a food processor, add onion, celery, and carrot. Blend until finely minced but not mush. Drain mixture onto paper towel to extract as much moisture as possible, then add to beef and egg mixture. In same food processor, add garlic, basil, and parsley. Lightly pulse to a fine chop and add to large bowl. Add remaining seasonings to the large bowl and combine all ingredients thoroughly by hand until well-mixed. Form mixture into meatballs of desired size. Place meatballs into a foil-lined casserole dish large enough to hold all the meatballs. Bake for 20-30 minutes until the internal temperature reads 165°F. Top with preferred sauce like the NOmato Sauce.