alive logo
foodfamilylifestylebeautysustainabilityhealthimmunity

Chicken Florentine Meatballs and Veggie Noodles

Serves 6.

    Share

    Chicken Florentine Meatballs and Veggie Noodles

    Fresh, healthy, and full of iron-rich spinach, chicken Florentine meatballs are a big hit for all ages. Ironically, when you peel back the layers of history, you find its origin has little or nothing to do with Florence, Italy, and everything to do with spinach, as we’ve done here. We scattered the meatballs with Parmesan to give it a hint of Italian.

    Advertisement

    Tip

    Make and bake a double batch of meatballs and freeze in small portions in tightly sealed containers. Delicious tossed into a marinara sauce and served over noodles or rice.

    Advertisement

    Chicken Florentine Meatballs and Veggie Noodles

    Ingredients

    Meatballs
    • 2 cups (500 mL) tightly packed baby spinach leaves
    • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra
    • 1 cup (250 mL) finely chopped crimini mushrooms
    • 1 medium onion, finely diced
    • 1 large garlic clove, minced
    • 2 Tbsp (30 mL) fresh minced tarragon
    • 1 tsp (5 mL) ground cumin
    • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) sea salt
    • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) black pepper
    • Zest from 1/2 lemon
    • 1 1/2 lbs (750 g) ground organic chicken, breast meat only
    Noodles
    • 2 large carrots
    • 3 medium-sized zucchini
    • 1/3 cup (80 mL) Parmesan
    • 1/3 cup (80 mL) mixture of minced fresh parsley, mint, and basil
    • Freshly ground black pepper

    Nutrition

    Per serving:

    • calories260
    • protein24g
    • fat16g
      • saturated fat5g
      • trans fat0g
    • carbohydrates9g
      • sugars4g
      • fibre2g
    • sodium376mg

    Directions

    01

    Preheat oven to 350 F (180 C). Lightly grease large baking pan with shallow sides and set aside.

    02

    In small saucepan with a little water, cook spinach until completely wilted. Drain, and when cool enough to handle, place in kitchen cloth and squeeze out as much moisture as youu2019re able. Place on cutting board and chop. Transfer to large bowl.

    03

    In heavy saucepan, heat oil. Add mushrooms, onion, and garlic. Sauteu0301 over medium heat until most of the liquid from mushrooms has evaporated and onion is soft. Stir often. Add to spinach in bowl along with tarragon, spices, lemon zest, and ground chicken. Work mixture together until thoroughly blended. Dampen palms with water and shape mixture into 1 in (2.5 cm) meatballs. Place in single layer in prepared baking pan. Lightly brush meatballs with oil. Bake in oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until meatballs register 165 F (75 C) on a meat thermometer and are cooked through.

    04

    While meatballs bake, prepare veggie noodles. Trim ends from carrots and peel. Using vegetable peeler, shave carrots lengthwise into thin ribbons. In large pot of boiling water, blanch carrot ribbons for 1 to 2 minutes, or until as tender-crisp as youu2019d like. Drain and plunge into ice water bath to stop cooking. Drain well and blot dry. Transfer to large serving dish.

    05

    Using spiralizer or hand-held peeler, cut zucchini into julienne fronds. Place in sieve and then plunge into boiling water for a few seconds; shake well to remove as much liquid as youu2019re able. Add to carrots. Gently toss vegetable noodles with Parmesan and fresh herbs.

    06

    When meatballs are fully baked, tumble over vegetable noodles along with any juices that may have collected in pan. Add fresh pepper to taste and serve immediately.

    Advertisement

    Like this recipe?

    This recipe is part of the How Good Is Green? collection.

    Ad
    Advertisement
    Advertisement

    READ THIS NEXT

    SEE MORE »
    Fruity Tofu with Sweet Potato Wedges
    Beet Falafel Burgers with Dilly Tahini Sauce

    Beet Falafel Burgers with Dilly Tahini Sauce

    If a falafel and burger had a love child, this would be it. The result of this hybrid is a vibrantly coloured, complex-flavoured veggie burger you’ll flip over. You can also serve them between toasted hamburger buns with toppings such as sliced cucumber, sliced tomato, and arugula.  Holding it together Many plant-based burgers are crumbly and weak, risking a patty that ends up between the grill grates instead of intact on your plate. Keep your burgers together by forming patties no larger than 1 in (2.5 cm) thick, which ensures a nice, even crust on the outside and a thoroughly warmed-through centre, then chilling the patties before grilling. You can also consider using a burger mould, which gives you denser, equally sized patties that cook evenly. Be sure your grill grates are well greased.  Deep freeze You can freeze uncooked falafel burgers on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet or plate and then transfer frozen patties to an airtight container. When ready, just thaw and cook as instructed. Falafel cooking options To bake: Arrange falafel on parchment-lined baking sheet and brush lightly with oil; bake at 375 F (190 C) for 25 minutes, or until crispy on the outside and heated through. To pan fry: Heat large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add 1 Tbsp oil (15 mL) for each 2 burgers in the pan, swirl to coat pan and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until underside is browned. Then flip carefully and cook for 2 to 3 minutes more.