Beets & Balls

Sometimes you wind up with an unexpected menu item that you have to create a meal using. I was sitting in my classroom when a student that isn’t even my student showed up. I had a conversation in passing with him yesterday about the incredible store in town that he works at. It is a little shop that sells all locally grown produce and products. As a part of this conversation, my love of beets came up. Today, he arrived to my classroom with a giant smile and presented me with some beautiful golden beets. Yes, I jumped up and gave him a bear hug!

I made this recipe with my grandmother in mind. Occasionally she would put raisins and pine nuts in her meatballs. It adds just the right amount of sweet to the meal. With Nanny as my inspiration, I decided to make my turkey meatballs over a bed of roasted beet slivers with goat cheese and toasted walnuts. It is not paleo, but it is a Friday night, so it is time to cheat a bit! Yummy!

1 pound ground turkey
1/4 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
1 egg
1 tsp. basil
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1 medium bunch of golden beets
1 Tbsp. olive oil
Salt, pepper, and basil to taste

1. Make the meatball mixture by mixing the turkey, bread crumbs, egg, and basil in a large bowl. Make golf ball sized meatballs.
2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
3. Preheat a large skillet over high heat. Drizzle a bit of olive oil to coat the pan. Add the meatballs an brown them by frequently turning. Cook until brown on all sides.
4. Transfer the meatballs to a baking dish and bake for 30 minutes.
5. While the meatballs are baking, wash, peel, and very thinly slice the beets.
6. In a large bowl, mix the beets with the olive oil, salt, and pepper. Place the slices on a baking sheet and put in the oven when there are 15 minutes remaining for the meatballs.
7. Serve by placing the beets on the plate and sprinkling with as much goat cheese and toasted walnuts as you wish. Top with a mound of meatballs and enjoy!

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