Meat and Grain Balls - Bittman

This recipe from Mark Bittman grabbed my attention with the name Meat and Grain Balls.  What grain is he talking about?  It seems, almost any grain would work so I used quinoa; Bittman used bulgur.  The truth is that quinoa is easy to cook and speedy to be finished which is why I chose it.  My guests picked out the quinoa by the taste but I could not do so.  I served these in a sweet and sour sauce and that is what dominated.

Meat-and-Grain Balls

2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt to taste
1 pound meat 
1cloves minced garlic
 2 shallots, chopped
1 or 2 shakes of cayenne
1 tablesppon chili powder
black pepper to taste
1 egg
2 cups cooked, cooked quinoa
2 cups spinach 

Preheat oven to 400F

Bring pot of water to boil. Wilt spinach in boiling water for about 30 seconds. Drain it, dry it, chop it.

Put spinach in a bowl, along with ground meat. 

Add onion, garlic, spices and egg.

Add either the cooked quinoa.

Mix all of the ingredients together.

Transfer the mixture to a greased loaf pan, OR shape into burgers or meatballs (as I said, 1lb of ground turkey made approximately 16 medium sized meatballs).

Place in oven and roast. Depending on size of meatballs, it will take between 15 minutes for small meatballs and up to 30 for larger ones, using a 400 degree oven.

Make sauce of choice to go with the meatballs.

Place balls in sauce.

Eat and enjoy.
Linked to:   Treasure Box Tuesday    Hearth and Soul Hop     Tuesday’s Table            Fat Tuesday          Weekend Potluck        What'd You Do  This Weekend         Waste Not Want Not Wednesday             Creative Munster                         What's Cooking Wednesday       Full Plate Thursday


  1. I hadn't seen this recipe from Bittman. Love his stuff. Which book did it come from. I really want to try this one. LOVE quinoa.

  2. Really love the idea of adding quinoa and spinach to the meatballs, Chaya. What a great way to add both flavour and nutrition! Thank you for sharing with us at Hearth and Soul. Sharing!


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