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Spaghetti and Mackerel Meatballs

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    Spaghetti and Mackerel Meatballs

    Perhaps the phrase “holy mackerel” stems from its nutritional pedigree. Casting your line for a 3 oz (85 g) mackerel serving provides nearly 2.3 g of omega-3s, plus laudable amounts of vitamin D, protein, niacin, and vitamin B12.

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    Mackerel has a firm flesh with a savoury, strong flavour and rates highly on all of the sustainable seafood websites because it’s quick to spawn and grows rapidly, making it more resilient to fishing pressures. Atlantic Canada mackerel is considered an especially “green” seafood option.

    Available at most fish counters, convenient smoked mackerel is a delicious addition to dips and sandwiches. Or try this upgrade of spaghetti and meatballs.

    1 lb (450 g) smoked mackerel
    2/3 cup (160 mL) bread crumbs
    1/4 cup (60 mL) ground flaxseed
    2 large free-range eggs
    1 shallot, chopped
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    2 tsp (10 mL) Dijon mustard
    1 - 1 lb (450 g) package whole grain spaghetti or linguini
    1 Tbsp (15 mL) unsalted butter
    5 cups (1.25 L) sliced crimini mushrooms
    1/4 cup (60 mL) dry white wine
    2 cups (500 mL) halved cherry tomatoes
    2 cups (500 mL) flat-leaf parsley
    1/4 cup (60 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
    Juice of 1/2 lemon
    1/2 tsp (2 mL) red chili flakes
    1/4 tsp (1 mL) sea salt
    1/4 tsp (1 mL) black pepper
    Parmesan cheese, for garnish

    Separate mackerel flesh from skin and place it in food processor container along with bread crumbs, flaxseed, eggs, shallot, garlic, and mustard. Blend until well combined and coarse mixture forms. Refrigerate mixture for at least 30 minutes so crumbs have a chance to absorb some of the moisture to help with binding.

    Preheat oven to 350 F (180 C). Form mackerel mixture into 20 to 24 meatballs and place on silicone- or parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes.

    Meanwhile, bring large pot of water to boil. Add spaghetti and cook according to package directions. Drain and return to pot.

    Melt butter in skillet over medium heat; add sliced mushrooms and sauté for 5 minutes, stirring regularly. Stir in wine and cook for another 5 minutes or until most of wine has evaporated. Add mushrooms, tomatoes, and parsley to pot with spaghetti.

    In small bowl, whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, red chili flakes, salt, and pepper. Add to spaghetti and toss to coat. Divide spaghetti among serving plates and top with mackerel meatballs and grated Parmesan.

    Serves 6.

    Each serving contains: 524 calories; 29 g protein; 29 g total fat (7 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 37 g total carbohydrates (4 g sugars, 7 g fibre); 291 mg sodium

    source: "Catch of the Day", alive #364, February 2013

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    Spaghetti and Mackerel Meatballs

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