Thursday, October 11, 2012

Coconut Chicken Meatball Bake

Calling all coconut lovers!  Coconut is one of my favorite flavors that work for sweet and savory dishes.  I found ground chicken on sale at the store and this is what I decided to try.  This is so rich and satisfying I can’t believe it!  If you decide to make one thing new make this the one!

  • 1 Pound Ground Chicken
  • ½ Cup Breadcrumbs (I make my own)
  • ¼ Cup Part Skim Ricotta Cheese
  • 1 Egg, beaten
  • ¼ Cup Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 Scallion, Chopped
  • 1 Garlic Clove, minced
  • ½ teaspoon Sea Salt
  • ¼ teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 Package Gnocchi
  • ¼ Cup diced Pancetta (or bacon)
  • 2 Tablespoons All Purpose Flour
  • 1 15 ounce Can of Coconut Milk
  • 1 Cup Chicken Stock
  • 2 Cups Shredded Mozzarella
  • 1 Cup Peas
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
  • ¼ Cup Breadcrumbs
  • ¼ Cup Parmesan
  • ¼ Cup Shredded Coconut, unsweetened

Heat oven to 375 degrees

First, combine chicken, breadcrumbs, ricotta, egg, cheese, basil, scallion, garlic, salt, and pepper.  Make into golf ball sized balls and put on a nonstick cookie sheet.  Bake for 15 minutes and set aside.

Second, boil some water, add the gnocchi, and cook until they float to the top; remove and set aside.

Third, cook the pancetta over medium high heat until crisp, add flour, and heat until bubbly.  Gradually whisk in coconut milk and chicken stock.  Bring to a bubble and add cheese.  Season the cheese sauce with salt and pepper to taste. Throw in the peas (I just throw some frozen so they don't get overcooked).

Finally, combine chicken meatballs, gnocchi, and cheese sauce and put in a casserole dish.  Combine topping ingredients and spread evenly over the top.  Bake for about 45 minutes, checking towards the end to make sure it doesn't brown too much.  Let it sit for about 10 – 15 minutes before serving.  Eat up and enjoy!!

This dish isn't the quickest ever created but it is truly delicious.  I plan to make this recipe again and again!  It really doesn't dirty too many pans as I just used one pan to cook the gnocchi and cheese sauce and a couple of bowls!  I love it and I KNOW if you try this recipe you will as well!  

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