It’s been at least a week since I’ve crafted anything remotely resembling a meal (because PB&J sandwiches don’t count!). On Tuesday, however, I took my chances and tried to make dinner using only what I had unpacked so far. So I went into battle with only a wooden spoon, a paring knife, a rice cooker and a small sauce pan. I had frozen meatballs from Sams Club in the freezer and half of a bag of egg noodles in the pantry.
Well, first of all, I needed (or wanted, rather) some sort of vegetable. Since I had been planning this out while I was still at work, I had enough forethought to stop at the store on my way home and pick up some Roma tomatoes and a head of garlic. Luckily I had unpacked my pantry and spice rack items the night before, so I had everything I needed to get started!
The great thing about rice cookers (even greater than the fact that I snagged mine at a garage sale for $1) is that they can do SO much more than just rice! I had been using mine, with close supervision of course, to cook pasta and vegetables so it was a good tool to have unpacked for cooking the egg noodles. The sauce pan handled the rest. Here is the result!
That’s how it came out after I mixed everything together in the rice cooker pot. Appetizing, isn’t it (I hope!)? I really wish I had my basil plant at that time. Some bright green basil leaves would’ve completed the red, white, and green Italian Trifecta of Perfection! Instead, I had to settle for some pesto mixed in with the tomatoes. Oh well!
Here are your do-it-yourself instructions:
INGREDIENTS (measurements are approximate)
- 7-8 beef meatballs (frozen or freshly made)
- 1/2 bag egg noodles (not the huge bag, the smaller one) cooked to your liking
- 3 Roma tomatoes (chopped/cubed)
- 2-3 cloves garlic (chopped)
- 1 tbs chicken broth
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 tsp black pepper (freshly ground)
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp pesto (or several basil leaves)
I heated the meatballs first in the saucepan to defrost them and brown them on the outsides on medium heat. Once they had thawed and browned, I used a small knife to cut each meatball in half to cook the still-frozen insides. Once the meatballs were cooked through, I set them aside in a small bowl. Using the chicken broth, I de-glazed the saucepan and added the chopped garlic. However, if I had some white wine, I would have preferred to use that instead. I let the garlic simmer until the broth had almost completely disappeared from the pan. I then added the olive oil and the chopped tomatoes. After a good stir to coat each piece of tomato with oil and garlic, I sprinkled in the salt and pepper, added the pesto, and stirred again to fully incorporate. Once the tomatoes started to soften (their skin was starting to peel off at that point), I turned the heat off under the tomatoes and added the meatballs back into the saucepan and mixed them in. I then added the mixture to the cooked egg noodles in my rice cooker pot and tossed them together thoroughly.
It was quick and pretty delicious. The leftovers were good enough to take for lunch the next day!
See you next dish!
The Head Spoon