Asian Meatballs & Rice Noodles

Skip the wheat-based pasta and go for the rice ones instead. It’s much healthier.

I buy (wheat free) rice sticks & rice noodles from my local Asian market. Here’s a photo of Asian meatballs with rice noodles that I regularly serve. My version of this meatball is below this yummy photo!

Asian Meatballs

  • 1/4 cup milk  (I made milk from powdered milk)
    1/4 cup fine dry bread crumbs  (I use gluten free cornbread)
    1-1/2 pounds ground turkey, with dark meat  (breast meat makes this too dry)
    1 large egg, lightly beaten
    1/2 cup canned sliced water chestnuts, rinsed, drained, and finely chopped (use the food processor)
    1 tablespoon finely minced ginger root (can sub 1 teaspoon ginger powder)
    1/2 teaspoon salt (do not add if using beef bullion)
    1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro plus
    1/4 cup sprigs
    1 tablespoon gluten free soy sauce
    2 teaspoons Asian sesame oil  (I used olive oil)
    2 teaspoons beef bullion powder or the amount of beef bullion cubes to make 2 cups liquid broth

Make Meatballs

  • Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 500°F.
  • Pour milk over bread crumbs in a large bowl and stir until liquid is absorbed.
  • Add remaining ingredients to the bread/milk mixture. Mix with your hands until well combined. Do not over mix.
  • Test your mixture. Cook a tiny meatball in the microwave or stove top as a taste test to make sure there is not too much or enough salt, spices, etc.
  • Shape 3 tablespoons meat mixture at a time into a balls. Place 1/2 inch apart in a 13- by 9-inch glass baking dish. If using a metal baking dish, add minutes to the baking time.
  • Bake until cooked through, about 15 minutes.

Dipping Sauce

  • 1/4 cup sprigs cilantro
    4 tablespoons soy sauce
    2 teaspoons Asian sesame oil (I used olive oil)
    2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
    2 tablespoons water
    2 teaspoons sugar

Make the Dipping Sauce

  • Add lime juice, water, sugar, soy sauce, and oil to a small bowl.
  • Stir until sugar is dissolved.

To Serve

  • Remove meatballs to dishes. I put my meatballs atop cooked rice noodles.
  • Stir sauce well. Serve meatballs with cilantro and sauce drizzled on top.

Serves 4

Asian Meatballs With Sesame Lime Dipping Sauce

Adapted from Gourmet (May 2007)

Servings:   Makes 4 (main course) servings.

1/4 cup milk  (I used 1%)
1/4 cup fine dry bread crumbs  (I used Panko)
1-1/2 pounds ground turkey, with dark meat  (Don’t use breast meat, it will be too dry)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup canned sliced water chestnuts, rinsed, drained, and finely chopped ( did it in my food processor)
1 Tablespoon finely minced ginger root
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro plus
1/4 cup sprigs
5 tablespoons soy sauce
4 teaspoons Asian sesame oil
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons sugar
Accompaniment: steamed white rice

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 500°F.

Pour milk over bread crumbs in a large bowl and stir until liquid is absorbed. Add ground meat, egg, water chestnuts, salt, chopped cilantro, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, and 2 teaspoons oil and mix with your hands until combined well. Shape 3 tablespoons meat mixture into a ball and transfer to a 13- by 9-inch glass baking dish. Make more meatballs with remaining mixture, arranging meatballs about 1/2 inch apart in baking dish. Bake until cooked through, about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, stir together lime juice, water, sugar, remaining 4 tablespoons soy sauce, and remaining 2 teaspoons oil in a bowl until sugar is dissolved.

Transfer meatballs to a serving dish. Stir sauce, then drizzle meatballs with 1 tablespoon sauce and sprinkle with cilantro sprigs.

Serve meatballs with remaining sauce.
Makes 4 (main course) servings.

Note:  I always make a tiny meatball and boil or microwave it, to check if the seasonings are right. I wound up adding a little more salt to the meat mixture before I formed the rest of the meatballs.

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