Chicken and mushroom meatballs redux

This is a diet meal that owes a lot to the food processor. I have to be in the right mood to haul that damn thing out. And usually this will happen if it can multitask, in this case grinding mushrooms and chicken.

This is a cuisine minceur recipe from Gourmet Magazine a hundred years ago when cuisine minceur was still a thing. Cuisine Minceur is the French expression for “gourmet diet food” as if there is such a thing.  Of course, I did not follow the recipe, just the technique of combining the chicken with the cooked mushrooms which is a totally great idea. But then I went rogue. The recipe was originally tiny meatballs in delicate mushroom broth. I put a wallop of Italian herbs into the mess and used my handy new scoop to make not large but larger balls. And then slopped ’em into a sauce with peppers and onions. Yeah, no. 

Italian hockey pucks not the delicate little mushroom balls that so entranced my French class. I should know better. They were good enough. And, of course, I’ll eat any damn thing it turns out. Except anchovies.

Mushroom meatballs

This brilliant recipe is from an old Gourmet. I’ve hung onto it for years and never made it before. So I broke a rule. I served guests something I had never made. 

It is supposed to be a low cal food. I added some cals because I used some butter but on the whole this is still pretty dietetic. Basically it is just equal parts ground up mushrooms and ground chicken breast. Sauté the mushrooms until they give up their liquid and then squeeze the rest of the water out of the mushrooms in cheese cloth (note to self: need more cheese cloth) reserving the liquid. I added caramelized onions and a few teaspoons of tomato paste and then mixed it all up and rolled it into balls.

I made gravy out of the liquid, thickened with bechamel made with brown butter and cornstarch, and then baked the meatballs at 350 for 15 mins. I then let them cook in the gravy for a few minutes and served them over laboriously made purée de pommes de terre. Et Voila!

I liked them very much. Loralyn said they were the best thing she’d ever eaten. Me, I’m not so sure about that.