So with the bird flu scaring away people in TN I wasn't comfortable posting this recipe which was lying in my drafts atleast for a month. But I guess the hot news is kinda settling now and I wanted to post it as soon as possible as it would make a great Christmas dinner. If you want to try something special for your Christmas evening try making these nuts and raisins stuffed chicken meatballs meatballs. These are soft and super yummy chicken balls cooked in a very simple yet sweet and flavorful saucy curry that tastes exotic. Any beginner can attempt this one, there's not much work and not much skills needed. You can make the meatballs ahead of time and freeze them, and on the day you want to prepare the dish just make the curry and add the meatballs into them, cook and serve. It will be a crowd pleaser for sure. The meatballs have nuts and raisins stuffed in them so making every bite a super exciting one. You can serve these saucy meatballs along with spaghetti, pasta, noodles or cooked basmati rice and enjoy a very hearty meal or serve it like an appetizer also.
This was one among the featured recipes in Aval Vikatan kitchen magazine December 2014 issue. Yes like last month some of my recipes almost 15 of them (bakes, sweets & nonveg) have been featured in this month's edition also. Adding to that I got an opportunity to click the cover pic for that magazine also. Yippeee :) In that click is one of the recently baked Chocolate cake with whipped cream frosting. Do grab a copy and check it out if interested :)
Now lets move on to the recipe :)
INGREDIENTSServes 1 to 2 people
Total Preparation Time - 60 minutes (plus overnight refrigeration)
For The Meat Balls
- Boneless chicken - 175 grams
- Beaten egg - 1 tablespoon
- Breadcrumbs - 1.5 tablespoons
- Garlic - 1 pod (chopped finely)
- Chopped coriander leaves - 1 teaspoon
- Pepper powder - 1/4 tsp
- Salt - Little less than 1/2 teaspoon (or as per taste)
- Chopped nuts - 2 tablespoons (Pistachio, Almonds, Cashew nuts)
- Raisins - Few (5 to 6 chopped)
For The Curry
- Big onion - 1
- Ginger - 1 small piece (about 1 inch long)
- Garlic - 1 pod
- Tomato sauce - 1 tablespoon
- Red chilli powder - 1½ tablespoons (or 2 tbsp)
- Pepper powder - 1/4 teaspoon
- Vinegar - 1/2 teaspoon
- Sugar - 1/2 teaspoon
- Salt - As per taste (about 1/2 teaspoon)
- Chopped coriander leaves - 2 tablespoons
- Butter - 1 teaspoon
- Oil - 2 tablespoons
For Spaghetti / Noodles (optional)
- Spaghetti / Noodles - 50 grams
- Butter -1 teaspoon
- Salt - As needed
- Pepper powder - 1/4 teaspoon
- Mix chopped nuts and chopped raisins. Wash and chop chicken into smaller cubes. (Add a little turmeric powder & salt while washing the chicken pieces if you wish)
- Prepare Meatballs: Add the washed chicken pieces into a blender and grind well.
- Take ground chicken in a bowl and add salt, finely chopped garlic, chopped coriander leaves, pepper powder, bread crumbs, beaten egg and mix really well. Do not add even a single drop of water while grinding or mixing. Put it inside a ziplock bag or plastic bag and leave it inside the freezer/chiller tray overnight. (This will allow the flavors to get into the ground chicken well)
- The next morning remove the chicken mixture from refrigerator and set aside until it reaches room temperature. Then grease your palms with oil, pinch out a little of the chicken mixture and roll into a big gooseberry sized ball.
- Then flatten the ball and make an indent in the center of the ball add stuff with 1/4 teaspoon of chopped nut and chopped raisin mixture, then cover and roll it into a ball again. Do the same with the rest. (You will get nearly 6 to 7 balls depending on size)
- Prepare Sweet & Spicy Curry/Sauce: Place a pan on flame and add oil and butter. After it heats up, add chopped onion and saute until it turns brownish. Then add sugar and salt and give a stir.
- Now add crushed ginger and garlic and saute well.
- Add red chilli powder and saute.
- Then add tomato sauce and stir well.
- Add vinegar and chopped coriander leaves and stir. Then add the remaining chopped nuts and raisin (leftover after stuffing chicken balls) and stir well.
- Add pepper powder and pour in about 250 ml of water and stir well. Check for salt and add if needed.
- Now gently drop the prepared chicken balls into the sauce and stir gently, see that you do not break the meatballs. Then cover the pan and cook the curry on a low flame for 5 to 8 minutes depending on the size of the ball. Open the lid and gently turn the chicken balls. Cook for 2 more minutes and remove from flame when the curry seems thick.
- Prepare Noodles/Spaghetti: I used noodles (egg noodles) to make the basic noodle bed. You can use spaghetti or even pastas. Now place noodles in a saucepan and pour enough water so that the noodles gets covered well in water. Add some salt and cook on low flame until the noodles become soft and almost cooked. Now remove from flame and drain the water from the noodles. Wash noodles in fresh cold water and drain again. Now add butter and pepper powder and give a good toss. Set aside.
- Finally arrange the platter. Spread some noodles/spaghetti over the plate, then pour some meatball curry over the noodles. Lastly place some meatballs over it and serve hot.
TIP 1: Do not add any water while making the chicken mixture. You will not be able to shape balls out of it.
TIP 2: The base or the sauce can be optimized as you wish. Make it spicy or mellow in flavors by adjusting the ingredients.
TIP 3: You can d the same with turkey or beef but make sure to cook them even longer or just steam and then add them into the sauce.
TIP 4: If you over cook the chicken meatballs they will become tougher.
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