Spicy Mama

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Yesterday I got to the task of using the moose meat that my daughter gave me over the weekend.  They travelled over two days and then we visited for two days and so the meat did not stay frozen in the cooler they stored it in.  Thus, we arrived home with 2 packages of ground moose meat, a package of italian sausage, a pound of stew meat as well as pepperoni and jerky, all fully thawed.  I unwrapped  the meat, placed it on a platter and then waited for an idea to move me.

I was first inspired to make some sort of spicy meatballs because while in Victoria we had lunch at Pagliacci’s, one of my favourite haunts from university days.  I combined the italian flavours of the Meat John Doe dish from Pagliacci’s with a Portuguese touch inspired by a Port tasting evening and my favourite butcher’s Portuguese Chicken that I used to buy when I lived in Penticton. Last week I tried to replicate his Portuguese Chicken dish so I had a spice blend already made up so I thought I would throw some of that in as well.

Although I made this dish from moose meat it could just as easily be used with beef, pork, elk or any combination of these.  Try serving these over some creamy polenta or homemade pasta.  Yum.

The result was delicious.

Spicy Meatballs

1 lb moose, beef or a combo of beef/pork

½ cup corn flake crumbs

1 Tbsp. Portuguese spice blend

1 tsp. oregano

¼ tsp. chilli flakes

¼ cup sundried tomatoes, very finely chopped

1 egg

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Combine meat and other  ingredients gently with hands until well incorporated.

Gently shape meat into approximately 1 inch diameter meatballs.  Vary size depending on personal preference.

Place shaped meatballs on baking sheet and place in a 400F oven on the broil setting.

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Watch carefully and turn meatballs until all sizes are browned.

Remove from oven.

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Sauce

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 tsp. herbs of Provence

½ tsp. salt

pepper to taste

2 cloves, crushed garlic

½ onion, chopped

2 Tbsp. pesto

1 Tbsp. brown sugar

splash of balsamic vinegar

Place olive oil and garlic in a large, deep frying pan and sauté until soft, add onions.

Sauté until onions are golden brown and soft. Add remaining ingredients and stir until onion mixture is well coated with herb mixture.

Slowly pour in a 28 ounce can of diced or crushed tomatoes and stir well.

Heat until mixture begins to bubble and then add ½ cup red wine (or Port) Stir well.

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Carefully place browned meatballs into the sauce and until well coated.

Place a lid on the pan, turn heat down to a slow simmer and allow the meatballs to  cook in sauce for approximately ½ hour.

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At this point the sauce and meatballs may be cooled and frozen or served over pasta, polenta or risotto.

Sprinkle freshly grated asiago cheese over sauce when serving.

Enjoy!

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