Kale turkey meatballs

Top these meatballs with a simple tomato sauce and add your favorite pasta, or do something different, and use them in pitas with veggies and yogurt sauce for a Mediterranean take.

In Praise of Leftovers
Sauté garlic, kale, and mushrooms with a little salt before adding to ground turkey and forming your meatballs.

Yesterday, after a frustrating day of doing lots of work without much to show for it (Why does sitting the computer feel that way? I do not love coordinating sometimes.), I put on my apron at 5:30 p.m., and immediately felt better. I was going to produce something! There would be something to show for my 60 minutes of work! And it would make me and my family full and happy.

Yancey got some incredible organic meat from his co-worker and ground turkey was part of our package. I asked him to get more since I can think of about 1 zillion uses for it – meatloaf (drool), spaghetti sauce, burgers, taco salad (drool squared), breakfast sausage patties. It might not be sexy, but it's deliciously lean protein, especially these turkeys who were loved all their waddling little lives. 

But it was meatballs last night, this time dropped into a simple tomato sauce, served over linguine with chives from the garden and some Asiago on top. The kids have stalwartly put up with a lot of salads lately (LOVE that), so I enjoyed hearing slurps and yumms.

Turkey kale meatballs

You can put these in tomato sauce or do so many other things with them, and they'll freeze beautifully or keep in the fridge for a few days. Put them in pita pockets with veggies and a yogurt sauce, slice and fry them up with eggs in the morning, break them up and put them in burritos or on top of nachos, use them atop a salad with feta, pita chips, cucumbers, and tomatoes. 

2 pounds ground turkey
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 bunch kale, washed and finely chopped
1/4 pound mushrooms, washed and finely chopped 
Handful chopped fresh herbs – parsley, basil, oregano, thyme or just parsley if that's what you have
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
1/2 cup bread crumbs (I just keep a bag of them in the freezer for things like this)
1 egg, slightly beaten
Lots of salt and pepper

1. Heat oven to 425 degrees F., and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. Heat 1 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large skillet or wok. When shimmering, add garlic, kale, and mushrooms. Sauté with a little salt until it's wilted down to practically nothing and all the water has evaporated. Set aside to cool a bit.

3. Dump the ground turkey into a large bowl. Add herbs, bread crumbs, eggs, salt, pepper, Parmesan, and cooled veggies and mix with your hands very, very gently.

4. Form small balls (about 2 tablespoons large) and space out on the two cookies sheets. Drizzle with remaining 1 tablespoon. of olive oil and bake in the oven for about 12 minutes, until they're golden and cooked through.

Related post on In Praise of Leftovers: Turkey Meatballs in Tomato Sauce

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