Thursday, October 10, 2013

Turkey with Adobo Meatballs with Avocado Dipping Sauce

It guess it's time to start solids soon based on this picture.  This was an unintentional photo bomb, by the way.

I've concluded a few things about cooking (and food blogging) with a baby:

1) Experimental cooking will only happen on the weekends when my husband can distract baby for longer periods of time in case of missed ingredient, forgotten timer, kitchen fire...etc.

2) Ingredient photos are over-rated.  Gone are the days where I have time to set everything up before hand.

3) Ideal lighting will have to take back seat.  

4) Food prep, even the most simple of prep (chopping an onion, dicing tomatoes, getting water hot as to cut boil time in half when the time comes), is essential.  It's amazing how many 15 minute segments I find.  Then when dinner rolls around, and baby needs me- I can either walk husband through cooking, or my cook time is literally as fast as they make it on TV.  The cheese is already grated.  The stock is already thawed and the spices are already measured. 

5) Lastly, foil, saran wrap, and good tuperware are crucial!  I can get so much done ahead of time because of these life savers!  Praaaaaise the Lord!  My husband and I actually enjoy cheese and fruit plates on the patio when he gets home because I can prep it all before hand during the afternoon nap.  It sounds silly, but we really enjoy one another around dinner time stead of letting it be chaotic.  I know, I know, things will change baby starts eating with us- but we will make that fun.

Okay, let's talk ADOBO!  Chile in Adobo!  Really, they are just smoked jalape├▒os and then canned in their juices.  The smoky flavor that comes with these chiles is so wonderful.  Don't be afraid!  They are very approachable.  I will open a can, use what is needed and then freeze the rest of the chiles (with a little bit of sauce in each one) into ice cube trays so I can thaw them out for the future.  I hardly ever use the whole thing!

I originally made these balls for my girlfriend's baby shower.  These were the first food item gone.  And who knows why (probably that little bit of heat), but it was all the pregnant women at the shower that were downing these!

Turkey with Adobo Meatballs
and Avocado Dipping Sauce (adapted from

2 pounds lean ground turkey (I like 90:10)

1 large egg

2 chile in adobo sauce, minced

1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs

1/2 cup chopped cilantro (half for the balls, half for the sauce below)

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 1/4 cup per batch cooked

2 avocados

1/4 cup sour cream

2 cloves garlic

Cilantro from above

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

Juice from 1/2 lime

Chop your chiles.  Add it to your turkey.  Pour in your bread crumbs.  If you don't have seasoned bread crumbs, sprinkle in garlic powder, parsley, and extra salt and pepper.

Clean hands?  Get ready to mix! 

Oh wait, don't forget your cilantro!  Cilantro is kind of like mint.  It's a cooling herb and works really well with the chile in adobo.

Put half into the mixture, reserving the other half for the sauce.

Be light with it, you don't want them to be rocks.

Roll them into 1 1/2-2 inch balls.

Now for the sauce- like guac, you want to make this just before serving because it can brown a little bit after too much sitting time.

In a food processor, combine avocados, sour cream, garlic, lime, cilantro, salt and pepper until smooth.  For some reason, my son hates the food processor.  He's gotten over just about every other "scary noise" but this one has him terrified.  I've resorted to taking it out to the garage... Oh well, it won't be forever. 

In a large skillet heated to medium, pour your olive oil in.  I did my balls in two batches, so they weren't too crowded.  Allow one side to sear for about 3 minutes.  Then turn to another side for another 3 minute browning.  Turn one more time and cover pan, turning the heat to low.  They will finish cooking in the last 3-4 minutes.  Open one to test for doneness.

Remove balls to rest. Wipe out pan with paper towel and add new oil for remaining batch.  Repeat.

These work as great appetizers or a nice main course with a fun salad.  It used to be my husband I had to watch out for.  Now I have four hands to keep my eyes on.



  1. WOW! Excellent post with AMAZINGLY WONDERFUL photo's! I love it - Sounds super yummy!

  2. I love the photo with Colton-- adorable! Funny. Ah yes, I do remember how limited my leisurely cooking time was, when my munchkin was a wee lad. Team work does help. These meatballs sound wonderful, and I adore cilantro. I'd eat a lot of these, if I could.