Sunday, 17 July 2011

Stuffed (Hackney) Courgette Flowers with a Homemade Meatball Chaser

We haven't been in the garden for weeks what with being on holiday and then straight back to work, so imagine our surprise when we found a whole heap of courgette booty in the vegetable patch. They were quite small but very delicious indeed. Yee hah! Free home grown veggies with absolute zero maintenance. My favorite kind of vegetables.

Stuffed (Hackney) Courgette Flowers:
Several Small Courgette's with flowers attached, washed and with stamen carefully removed.

Ingredients for stuffing mixture:
Optional handful of sage leaves and runner beans (also from the garden)
5 x finely chopped Spring Onions
Handful of chopped mint leaves (from the garden too)
Half a block of feta
2 x Tablespoons of Mascarpone
1 x Tablespoon of Cream Cheese
1/2 Lemon zest
1 x Teaspoon of nutmeg
Pepper to season

Mix together the stuffing mixture ingredients together, put into a piping bag and pipe into the flowers.

Tempura Batter:
200g of Self Raising Flour
Sparkling water
Coarsely Ground Pepper

Add the water slowly to the flour, whisking until its sort of runny but not too thick.
Dip the vegetables and flowers into the batter and fry in vegetable oil until the batter goes slightly brown. This takes about 30 seconds if the oil is the right temperature but be careful of the oil. The Wig burnt his finger. Poor Wig.
Squeeze on some lemon juice and enjoy!

Since this was more like a starter, we also made meatballs for a main course... Diet starts tomorrow. Just call me Garfield.

Homemade Meatballs
1 x small pack of minced beef
1 x Whole Egg
1 x Egg yolk
1 x Crushed Garlic Clove
Handful of Lemon Thyme (from the garden)

Tomato Sauce Ingredients
1 x Finely chopped red onion
1 x Tin of Tomato's
1 x Finely chopped carrot
2 x Cloves of crushed Garlic
1/4 Bottle of red wine
Fresh torn Basil Leaves

Mix all the meatball mixture ingredients together in a bowl, with your hands.
When its all mixed together, divide into equal amounts and roll into balls. Add some flour to stop it from being too sticky.
Put in a pan with some olive oil to brown them.

While the balls are browning, in another pan make the tomato sauce by softening the onions, garlic and carrots.
When this is done chuck in the rest of the sauce ingredients and, the browned balls.
Simmer with the lid on the pan for about 15 minutes then cook with the lid off for 5 minutes or until the liquid has reduced slightly.
When its all cooked, stir in some cooked spaghetti and sling some parmesan and basil on top.

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