4 articles Tag meat

Slow Cooker Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs (recipe)

Just after Christmas, Husband bought me a slow cooker. I’ve been wanting one for absolutely ages, so I was super thrilled, especially as be bought me one which is 6.5l, meaning I can cook large meals and freeze some or feed a lot of people at once. I’ve been perusing various slow cooker groups on Facebook and found lots of recipes that I wanted to try, with slow cooker meatballs being one of the main ones, but a lot of the recipes I found have been American ones with ingredients that aren’t that common here in the UK, so I thought I’d modify the recipes and come up with my own! Bear in mind that this recipe makes 32-33 pretty large meatballs (I managed 5 and I have a HUGE appetite!) so you could easily halve the recipe if you’re cooking for few people or make the full batch and freeze what you don’t use.

Slow Cooker Meatballs

Slow Cooker Mozzarella-Stuffed Meatballs
 
Prep time
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These slow-cooked meatballs are full of flavour and oozy, melted mozzarella!
Author:
Recipe type: Slow Cooker
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 32 meatballs
Ingredients
  • 750g beef mince
  • 300g pork sausage meat
  • 2 balls of mozzarella
  • 2 slices of bread, blended to make breadcrumbs (I used the knobbies from a loaf)
  • 2 eggs
  • salt
  • basil
  • oregano
  • garlic powder
  • pepper
  • 2 jars of your favourite 800g tomato-based pasta sauce (or your own home-made sauce, whichever you have time for)
  • Pasta of your choice to serve
Instructions
  1. Place the mince and sausage meat into a large bowl and start to combine using your hands (you might want to remove your rings at this point!)
  2. Add in the breadcrumbs and eggs and continue to mash it all together with your hands, adding in about a teaspoon of each herb as you go (more or less, depending on your tastes)
  3. Squeeze your mozzarella inside a clean tea towel to remove any excess moisture and chop into cubes around half an inch square
  4. Take a dollop of your well-combined mixture and make a patty about the size of your palm and 1cm deep
  5. Place a square of mozzarella in the middle of the patty and bring the edges in, squashing the meat together to form the ball.
  6. Refrigerate for a couple of hours to help the balls retain their shape
  7. If you want to eat at around 6pm, I'd recommend starting to cook them at 2pm
  8. Place a layer of meatballs in the bottom of your slow cooker and cover in the first jar of sauce.
  9. Add another layer of meatballs and add the next jar of sauce. I dont recommend stirring at this point because you risk damaging the meatballs, but gently using a spoon you can distribute the sauce evenly to make sure everything is covered. There's no need to brown them first.
  10. Cook on LOW for 4 hours
  11. Once you're ready to serve, you may find a layer of fat which has come from the cooking meat and cheese and I just skimmed this off with a spoon before serving.

Without withing to sound SUPER arrogant, these meatballs were AMAZING! Husband declared it the best thing I’ve cooked in the slow cooker to date and the kids absolutely wolfed it down. Husband and I even had a midnight snack of meatball subs made from the leftovers (DON’T JUDGE US!!), and I’d totally recommend that as an alternative serving suggestion to pasta. If you shop around and find good deals, this is a relatively cheap meal given the yield and you can season the meatballs exactly to your tastes, which is handy if you’ve got fussy eaters – Husband has requested jalapenos in his ones next time I make them!

Let me know if you use my recipe to give these a go and how they turn out, I’d love to hear about it and see your pictures.

Win a Christmas Meat Hamper with Mum’s the Word and Bespoke Offers!

Everyone needs a little helping hand in the run-up to Christmas, so here at Mum’s the Word, we’ve got together with the lovely folk at Bespoke Offers to offer one lucky reader the chance to win a Donald Russell Ultimate Christmas Box (worth £69) plus 4 smoked salmon packs as a bonus. Here’s what the box contains: • 1 Loué Bronze Turkey, free-range and kitchen-ready (minimum weight 5kg/feeds 6-8 people) • 1 pack of smoked dry cured streaky bacon (minimum weight 200g) • 1 pack of pork sausage meat (minimum weight 450g) • 8 pigs in blankets (minimum weight 315g) • 1 Mosimann’s Christmas pudding (minimum weight 730g) • 4 packs of smoked salmon (pack weight 140g) Christmas Box If you haven’t heard of Bespoke Offers before, it’s the new service from Barclaycard which gives you hundreds of great offers on one site, and you don’t even need to be a Barclaycard customer, you just have to be over 18 and a UK resident to use it. There are some brilliant things on offer at the moment, from jewellery to homewares to electrical gifts, experience days and much more. I rather fancy the spa day for two, myself! To be in with a chance of winning, simply fill in the Rafflecopter widget below (give away ends 8th December 2013):a Rafflecopter giveaway

Win competitions at ThePrizeFinder.com

So, You’ve Eaten a Horse Burger?

Horse Meat

If you read the news/go on Twitter/listen to the radio, you’ll no doubt be aware by now that several major supermarkets have cleared their shelves amidst findings from an independent report which showed beef burgers to contain up to 29% horse meat. The chances are, if you’ve eaten a burger from Tesco, you’ve probably eaten horse. Are you horrified?

I’m not.

Don’t get me wrong, the fact that they’ve sold cheap horse meat under the guise of beef is wrong for MANY reasons. The cultural implications are mind boggling, especially as 85% of the burgers also contained pig DNA, so many a kosher Jew are probably feeling rather upset right now. Also, just for the plain old fact that if you PAY for beef and you get horse, that’s morally and financially wrong. It’d be called fraud in any other circumstance, surely?

But.

What I don’t get is this; people are up in arms simply about the fact that they’ve eaten a horse and I just don’t get that mentality.

Why is a horse more sacred than a chicken, a cow or a turkey? With Christmas just gone by, are we not upset about the TEN MILLION turkeys eaten in the UK alone? I understand that people keep horses as pets and we’re all quite precious about not eating animals that are cute or handsome, but if it were a choice between my family needing food and Joey running free in the paddock, it’d be horse casserole for tea, I’m afraid.

I’m not hugely worldly when it comes to food I’ve tried but I’ve eaten kangaroo, deer and veal (though I will admit I wasn’t properly aware of what veal was before I ate it) and I just don’t get this thing that humans have about prioritising one type of animal over another when it comes to meat. Most people probably now know that pigs are as intelligent as dogs and while that’s led to a rise in the number of people keeping pigs as pets, I bet it’s barely affected the number of bacon sandwiches eaten by us Brits.

Perhaps someone could enlighten me as to why a horse is more important than a cow?

Until then, I’m going to be avoiding beef burgers; not because I don’t want to eat horse, but because if I’m buying beef it’s because I want to eat a cow!

Tarberts Meats Review – Mr. Mum’s the Word SPEAKS!

I’m so very excited to have for you a review, done by my gorgeous Husband, of some meat that we were sent by Tarberts Fine Foods, so without further ado here’s what he thought:

I’m a carnivore. There, I said it. I’m one of the people that militant vegetarians dislike. I love meat.

I love vegetables, fruit, nuts, seeds and all that other stuff that’s good for me too, but deep, deep down I like nothing more than tucking into a thick sandwich, full of roast beef and horseradish sauce and washing it down with a glass of beer (or the odd splash of wine if I’m feeling cosmopolitan).

With that in mind, you can imagine my response when my wife approached me and asked me to trough my way through a hamper of quality cold-cuts, take notes, and wax lyrical about the process!

The cold-cuts in question were provided by Tarbert Fine Foods, and we were very pleased to receive a nice selection, including topside of beef, butter basted chicken, heather honey ham and (the wee one’s favourite) ham with Arran mustard, with a mind to offering an informed opinion in the run-up to Christmas.

The first part was easy. The eating.

I happily sat, and with the help of my beautiful assistant (my daughter) munched my way through sandwiches, rolls, baps, bagels, salads and even a nice omelette. The quality of the produce was universally excellent. All the meat that Tarbert’s sell comes from specially selected Scottish sources and, well, it shows.

But once we had completed the fun part I began to agonise – how do you review meat?

I didn’t want to chuck a lot of garbled clichés onto my lovely wife’s blog, and hope that it passed for writing. So I decided that the only way to give you a fair, accurate representation of the produce would be for me to ask my lovely, precocious and delightfully blunt daughter to give me her opinions, and here they are!

Daughter – “It was yummy! Can I have some more, please?!”

Me – “All of it? Was it all yummy? Come on, be scientific!”

Daughter – “Can I have some more please, Daddy?”

Me – “No. You’ll go pop!”

Daughter – “But Ponyo eats lots of ham and she’s magic!”

Me – “Yes, but..erm…it’s, she’s..”

And at that point I gave up, slapped myself on the forehead and shelved the idea in favour of being honest and less lazy.

The meat tasted like it was freshly carved, and when you’re used to grabbing a Dairy Lea Dunker and a soggy sandwich full of ‘wafer thin ham’ on your down time you notice things like that.

The heather honey ham made a fantastic meal, served with nothing more than a couple of fried eggs and a plain green salad, and it was something that even I, the worst chef in the world, could knock together in a trice.

The cuts of beef were superb too. They weren’t dry, but moist and succulent and went down a treat with some English mustard (or a dollop of ketchup in the wee one’s case).

But then, all of it was fantastic. It’s high quality, fresh tasting food that is directly comparable to something you’d buy from your local quality butcher or deli counter, and the fact that it’s pre-packed means you can rely on it lasting a while.

In all honesty my ‘review’ could have been one sentence:

“It’s good, old fashioned, nice tasting meat and I recommend you go out, buy some and eat it at once.”

Wouldn’t that have been better?