Tomato Broth with Beans with Chicken Meatballs
I love a good ground chicken recipe. Honestly, ground chicken is kind of meh, but it presents itself as a perfect blank canvas for spices and sauces. It is really important to add plenty of opportunities for getting more moisture into the meat, though, as this recipe offers. Cooking the meatballs in broth not only adds yummy garlicky flavor to the meatballs, but it also keeps them moist, which can be hard to do if you pan fry them or bake them in an oven.
This stew-like meal is a great option for a weeknight because it comes together quickly, even if you don't prep anything ahead of time. If you are good at prepping, though, you can make the meatball mixture ahead of time, as well as getting the tomato broth going with the green beans. Then, when you get home, you just have to bring it back to a boil, drop in the meatball mixture, and you'll be ready for dinner in no time. We love this with crusty bread, but it would be great over grains, rice or pasta even. Hope you try it!
Tomato Broth with Beans and Chicken Meatballs
Yields: 5-6 servings
1.5 lb. ground chicken
6 scallions, finely chopped
1 large egg
2 Tbsp red or white miso
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
Freshly ground black pepper
Sauce and beans
3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 small onion, thinly sliced
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 Tbsp. double-concentrated tomato paste
1 tsp salt
15 ounce crushed tomatoes
2 Tbsp. red or white miso
16 oz. green beans, trimmed, cut into 2–3" lengths
1/4 cup torn basil and/or parsley leaves leaves, for serving
Freshly shaved parmesan, for serving
Fresh bread or grains for serving
To make the meatballs:
Combine chicken, scallions, egg, miso, salt, red pepper flakes and several grinds of pepper in a medium bowl. Mix vigorously with a fork until combined (it will seem a bit wet at first, so keep at it) and just beginning to feel slightly sticky; set aside. You can make the meatball mixture several hours ahead; reserve in the fridge until ready to use.
To make the sauce:
Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium. Add onions and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until softened and just beginning to turn golden around edges, about 3 minutes. Add tomato paste and salt and cook, stirring, until slightly darkened in color and beginning to sizzle in fat, about 2 minutes. Add crushed tomatoes, miso, and 3 cups water. Bring to a simmer, stirring vigorously and mashing miso against side of pot to dissolve, and cook, stirring occasionally, about 5 to 10 minutes or until the sauce starts to boil.
Add green beans to saucepan and cook until tender, 6–8 minutes. At this point, you can receive the sauce ahead of time. When ready to serve, bring the sauce and beans back to a simmer and continue.
Using 2 spoons, drop large gumball-size balls of reserved meat mixture into simmering broth. Once all of the meatballs have been added, cook, stirring occasionally, until cooked through, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Ladle meatballs, vegetables, and tomato broth into bowls and top with basil and parsley. Shave parmesan over the bowl, if desired. Serve with fresh bread or over grains.