Vacation in such a wonderful thing. Over the last week (or so) I’ve been busy driving up and down the east coast visiting friends and family. We spent a few casual days in the New York City area where my husband and I each got to spend time with some of our best friends. (Sidenote: if anyone is a nerdy board game player then I have a cafe in Manhattan that you HAVE to check out!)
For part of this trip we stayed with my dear friend from elementary school. She and I were attached at the hip for our younger years before she moved away in 6th grade but we impressively decided to remain pen pals which kept us very close throughout middle and high school. I have often wondered if we would have stayed as close had she stayed in our hometown, as friends shift for unpredictable reasons throughout adolescence. But, this weekend I was struck by the power of long lasting friendship. While our lives have taken us down some slightly different paths, there are far more traits and affinities that we share. Our first grade selves did a pretty great job of finding one another.
Letter writing continued to be a theme this weekend, as my father and I have decided to start writing letters to one another. We only live about 15 miles away, and we usually chat every other day or so, but we both have recently acknowledged the power of the writing process for self reflection, expression, and connection. I am greatly looking forward to this new element of our relationship.
With my brain full of reflections and new thinking, as I prepare for dinner, I reached into my recipe box and pulled out an old classic I have yet to post. Jalapeno Chicken Meatballs! I didn’t keep any notes about where I originally found this recipe but this post looks very close.
These are not too spicy, very filling, and were delicious tonight with a simple red sauce.
*Makes about 20 meatballs. Serving size 4-5
- 2 pounds of ground chicken
- 2 eggs
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1/3 chopped onions
- 1 jalapeno (seeded if you prefer less spicy)
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley
- “some” basil – I put a few leaves
- 1 teaspoon of garlic
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 cup panko crumbs
- salt and pepper to taste
Steps and Notes:
- Place all ingredients in a large bowl
- Mix with your hands (a key step, of course).
- Bake on a rack for 30 minutes at 375
- Optional: after they were fully cooked, I kept them warm in the red sauce on the stovetop
Thoughts for Next Time:
- I plan to make these but keep the seeds next time for more heat/flavor
- Serve on top of spaghetti squash
- I’d like to get more creative with the sauce here. Perhaps a white cream sauce
- Add crushed red pepper for more heat