Curried Meatballs and Cauliflower

curried-meat-balls-and-cauliflowerMy husband wanted something “Indian” for dinner tonight.  I had thawed a pound of ground pork and also had half a pound of lean ground beef in the fridge.  We both love those tiny meatballs that appear on Indian restaurant buffet tables, so I decided to give them a stab and see what I ended up with.  Using what veggies I had on hand, this was the final dish and brother was it ever good!  Not at all spicy, so double the jalapeno if you’re into spicy, or add a dash of cayenne pepper.  For the non-low-carbers at the table, this would be delicious served with basmati rice, but it was pretty darn good just as is, quite honestly.  This dish is suitable for all phases of Atkins, Keto diets, and would be OK for Primal-Paleo using coconut milk for the cream.

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INGREDIENTS:

½ medium head cauliflower, cut into flowerettes

1 lb. lean ground pork

½ lb. lean ground beef

1 egg, beaten

2 oz. raw onion

2 cloves garlic

2 tsp. ground ginger root

1 tsp,. total Garam Masala

1 jalapeno, seeded and coarsely chopped (use 2 for spicier dish)

¼ c. cilantro for meat

¼ tsp. ground turmeric

¼ tsp. salt

2 plum tomatoes, coarsely chopped

½ c. cream + ½ c. water

1-2 T. more chopped cilantro for sauce

Dash curry powder

2 T. coconut or olive oil for browning meatballs stove-top (or bake them on non-stick pan)

VARIATION:  Add ¼-½ tsp. crushed dried mint to meat mixture (or 6 fresh leaves chopped).  you can also use ground lamb in this recipe for a more intense meat flavor.

DIRECTIONS:  Cut up cauliflower and partially cook in boiling water until just half tender.  You want it under-cooked as it will cook more once in your skillet sauce.  Drain and set aside for now.

In a food processor, pulse to a smooth mixture both meats, the egg, onion, garlic, ginger, jalapeno, ¼ c. cilantro, turmeric, salt and ½ tsp. of the Garam Masala spice blend.  Heat coconut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat (medium if not using a non-stick pan).  You can also bake the meatballs if you prefer to eliminate the need for any coconut oil (for about 20 minutes at 350º).  Form into twenty 1½” meatballs. Brown them rotating gently as they brown.  Spoon/drain off excess grease, if any.

When meatballs are nice an golden and almost done through, add the cream and water to the pan.  Using a silicone spatula, scrape up any brown bits off the pan so it will make the sauce richer.  Add chopped tomato, the final bit of the cilantro (and dried mint if using), dash curry powder and the rest of the Garam Masala spice.  Gently stir in the cauliflower chunks, coating each with sauce.  Simmer on low heat until thick to allow flavors to meld together nicely.  If the sauce is not thick enough for your taste, dust with the tiniest dusting of xanthan gum or your preferred thickener.  Work it into the sauce with your spatula until it has done a proper thickening job.  It will not take much at all.

NUTRITIONAL INFO:  Makes 5 servings (4 meatballs each with 1/4 cauli/sauce mixture).  Each serving contains:

428 calories, 33 g fat, 9.36 g carbs, 3.64 g fiber, 5.72 g NET CARBS, 25.5 g protein, 258 mg sodium

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