Category Archives: Hidden Vegetables

Pork And Mango Meatballs

Anyone who has read my blog knows we like a meatball in this house and these are no exception.

One of those fun recipes that evolve as I’m digging through the fridge looking for inspiration. The cream thickens to make a sweet yet savoury sauce, I serve these over rice.

Choose any mango chutney that you would happily eat on its own, not one that’s loitering in the fridge because it tastes awful!

Makes 18 meatballs and feeds 6.

Ingredients

500g minced pork

130g mango and ginger chutney

280g zucchini, grated and liquid squeezed out

1 red chilli, deseeded, halve lengthwise and sliced

10g fresh chopped chives

2 teaspoons ground cumin

Salt and pepper

250mls cream

Method

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Centigrade.

Combine all of the ingredients, except the cream in a bowl.

Form the meat into golf ball sized meatballs.

Lay the balls in a roasting tin and pop into the oven.

Bake for 25-30 minutes until beginning to colour.

Take the roasting tin out of the oven and pour in the cream, swirl it around the meatballs, turning them as you go.

Return to the oven and bake again for 10-15 minutes until the cream has thickened and the meatballs have coloured.

Advertisements

Greek Meatballs

What’s not to love with these meatballs, sneaking veggies into the kids, they freeze really well for dinner another night, baked, not fried and dinner served in a pitta, flat bread or roll is always a winner in our house!

If you are in barbcueing season, lucky you! These cook well on a BBQ, squeeze them onto skewers to make your own kofta or flatten them to make delicious patties.

Makes 28-30 balls. Serves 6.

Ingredients

70g gluten free fresh breadcrumbs

500g minced lamb

280g baby spinach

3 garlic cloves, peeled

15g fresh parsley leaves

100g spring onions/scallions/green onions

Zest of 1 lemon

Salt and freshly ground pepper

Method

If you have time, make the meatball mix a few hours before cooking but if not just carry on!

Preheat the oven to 220 degrees Centigrade, line a baking tray with baking parchment.

Cook the spinach until just wilted, I use the microwave. Allow to cool enough to handle it and then squeeze the water out of it.

Blitz the bread in a food processor. Tip into a large bowl.

Now add the cooked spinach, garlic, parsley and spring onions to the processor and blitz again, tip into the breadcrumbs.

Now grate the lemon over the spinach, add the lamb and season well.

Using your hands, combine all of the ingredients really really well.

Form into small walnut sized balls. Lay on the prepared baking tray.

Slide into the oven and turn the heat down to 200 degrees Centigrade.

Bake for 20-25 minutes until the outside has coloured and the meatballs are cooked through.

Serve with salad and fried haloumi in wraps, pittas or rolls or allow to cool, pour them into a zip lock bag and freeze for another day.

Pink Stuffed Potatoes

This is what happens when I bake too many potatoes the night before!

A great way of sneaking some more veg into the kids and in a house full of males I need some pink in my life!

Serves 4-6 depending on the size of your potatoes.

Ingredients

4 medium to large potatoes, baked and cooled

30g butter

1 small onion, finely diced

230g beetroot, peeled and grated

100g gruyere cheese, finely grated plus a little to top 

1 teaspoon fresh parsley, chopped

Freshly ground pepper

Method

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Centigrade. Line a baking tray with baking parchment.

Half the potatoes, scooop out the flesh, leaving the skin intact. Place the cooked potato in a large bowl.

In a large frying pan, heat the butter over a medium heat and add the onion. Cook for 5-7 minutes until it begins to soften.

Add the beetroot to the pan and cook for 10 minutes stirring occasionally.

While the beetroot cooks, lightly mash the potato with a fork, add the grated cheese and pepper, mix lightly.

Once the beetroot is cooked, add to the potato mix and combine thourghly.

Divide the beetroot mix into eight and spoon into the potato skins.

Sprinkle with a pinch of parsley and top with a little cheese. Lay the filled skins onto the baking tray.

Bake for 20 minutes until the cheese is golden and the filling is hot.

Thai Pork Meatballs in Coconut Sauce

Got any leftover Thai red curry paste hiding in the back of the fridge or cupboard? This is the perfect way to use it up!

Not too spicy, full of flavour and hidden veg to boot! 

Did I mention gluten, dairy and nut free???

Serves 6. Makes 28 meatballs.

Ingredients

60g gluten free fresh breadcrumbs

330g zucchini/courgette

80g fresh coriander/cilantro

4 spring onions/scallions

2 tablespoons gluten free soy sauce

2 tablespoons Thai red curry paste

1 egg

500g minced pork

2 x 270mls coconut milk

Method

Preheat the oven to 190 degrees Centigrade.

In a food processor, whizz the bread to make crumbs and tip into a large bowl.

Now grate the zucchini in the processor and again, tip into the bowl with the crumbs.

Next, whizz the coriander, spring onions, soy sauce, curry paste and egg, tip into the bowl.

Add the meat to the bowl and using your hands mix very well. Form into 28 balls.

Lay the balls in a non stick roasting tin as you go along with a little space around each one.

Bake the balls in the preheated oven for 20 minutes.

Remove and gently move the balls around so they have loosened from the base.

Pour the coconut milk into the tin and swirl around, covering the meatballs, scraping any pan juices into the milk.

Return to the oven and bake for 22-25 minutes until the coconut milk is thickened and bubbling.

Garnish with a little leftover coriander.

Black Bean And Beetroot Burgers

Well, what can I say……… my meat eating carnivore sons wolfed these down!

Non coeliacs had them in a brioche bun and us coeliacs had them with sweet potato wedges, absolutely delicious and healthy to boot! 

I have got into the habit of buying dry black beans in bulk, cooking up a big pan of them and freezing portions in boxes for later use, hence the non tin quantity.

Makes six large burgers and 8 regular sized burgers.

Ingredients

30ml olive oil

180g onion, finely diced

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

200g carrots, peeled and grated

380g beetroot, peeled and grated

2 teaspoons ground cumin

3 teaspoons ground coriander

1/4-1/2 teaspoon chilli powder

70g fresh coriander, stalks and leaves

600g cooked black beans

Salt and pepper to taste

Method

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Centigrade, line two baking sheets with baking parchment.

In a large frying pan, heat the oil and cook the onion for 5 minutes over a medium heat.

Add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes then add the grated carrot and beetroot, stir and cook for 3-4 minutes.

Stir in the ground cumin, ground coriander and chilli. Tip into a large bowl.

In a food processor, process the beans and fresh coriander until you have a loose crumble. Tip into the bowl with the beetroot mix.

Season with salt and pepper and then use your hands to combine the ingredients.

Once they are thourghly combined, divide the mixture and squeeze into patty shapes with your hands.

Lay each burger on the baking sheet until all of the mixture is used.

Drizzle each patty with a little olive oil and then bake for 20 minutes.

Use a large fish slice to lift the patties carefully as they are a bit on the crumbly side. I topped ours with avocado and Persian feta.


Secret Stuffed Potatoes

The secret to these is the hidden zucchini that even the fussiest of children will not find as long as they like pesto!

I try to plan ahead for these and bake the potatoes the day before if I have the oven on.

Makes 16.

Ingredients

8 small potatoes, around 100g each, baked

300g zucchini plus two teaspoons salt

4 tablespoons pesto

A little grated cheese

Method

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees and line a baking sheet with baking parchment.

Grate the zucchini and sprinkle with the salt, mixing a little with your hand, set aside in a sieve over a bowl for ten minutes.

Take a potato and cut in half, use a spoon to scoop the insides out and set aside. Repeat with all the potatoes.

Now, roughly chop up the potato to make a mash, stir through the pesto.

Rinse the zucchini under fresh water and then squeeze all of the moisture out with your hands.

Add the zucchini to the potato mash and mix well.

Spoon the zucchini mix into the potato skins and place on the baking sheet.

Sprinkle over the cheese and pop into the oven.

Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden.

Hidden Veg Sausage Rolls


Sausage rolls are sooooo handy on the evenings when we are all coming and going.

In the past I have been a big fan of cheese and bacon rolls but I am currently experimenting with hidden veggies with the aim of making these at the school I work in.

I do make a gluten free version for my youngest but he ate them too quickly for the photo! His sausage mix is made with gluten free fresh breadcrumbs and gluten free puff pastry.

Makes 20 large sausage rolls or 80 mini rolls for party food.

Ingredients

130g wholemeal bread blitzed to make breadcrumbs, crusts and the heel of the loaf are fine

100g onion, peeled and finely diced or blitzed

2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley leaves

300g carrots, peeled and grated

350g zucchini/courgette grated and all liquid squeezed out by hand

500g minced pork

1-2 teaspoons dried sage

Salt and pepper

5 sheets pre rolled puff pastry

1 egg, beaten

1 tablespoon black sesame seeds

Method

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees centigrade and line two baking sheets with baking parchment.

In a bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, onion, parsley, carrots, zucchini, pork, sage and a good seasoning of salt and pepper.

Seperate the pastry sheets, divide the sausage mix into 10 balls. Roll each ball into a sausage shape and lay one on the top half and one on the bottom half of each pastry sheet. Repeat with the remaining sausage mix.

Use a sharp knife to cut each sheet in half. Brush the cut with the beaten egg and then roll the pastry towards the egg wash to allow it to stick.

Cut the roll into your desired size, brush with egg and sprinkle with a little black sesame seeds if using. Repeat with the remaining rolls.

Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden.