Baked Turkey Meatballs

Do you have your tree up yet?? I have been working on my Christmas decorations all week and my tree isn’t up yet! Life is so busy at the holiday season but it seems like we are all so crazy busy all through the year that it takes an conscious effort to make a family meal and make it healthy too, and something your family will eat! 
My girls love meatballs and lately, they can’t get enough of them. In my effort to make them a little healthier, I came up with this little gem. Great for a dinner but would be great at any holiday gathering as a yummy appetizer.

 

Ingredients: 
3 slices of french bread, about 1 cup
1/3 cup milk
3 ounces sliced pancetta, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 egg
1 pound ground turkey
2 Tablespoons finely chopped parsley
1 Tablespoon tomato paste
Topping:
3 red bell peppers, cut into strips
1 1/2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Directions:

  • To make topping: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss bell peppers with 1 Tablespoon oil, then roast on a cookie sheet, stir occasionally, until tender and browned, about 35 minutes. Then stir with the vinegar and the red pepper flakes, and the remaining 1/2 Tablespoon oil in a medium bowl and set aside.
  • Meatballs: Soak bread in milk in a bowl until softened, about 4 minutes.
  • Cook pancetta, onion, and garlic in 1 Tablespoon oil with with salt and pepper in a pan over a medium heat until the onion is soft, it will take about 6 minutes. Let cool.
  • Squeeze bread to remove the excess milk, then discard milk. Lightly beat a egg in a large bowl, then combine with the turkey meat, pancetta mixture, bread, and parsley.
  • Form into meatballs and arrange onto a baking sheet.
  • In a bowl, stir together tomato paste and remaining Tablespoon oil and brush over the meatballs. Bake meatballs for about 20 to 25 minutes or completely done.
  • Toss the bell peppers and serve with the meatballs.

 

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