Lamb Meatballs & Spaghetti

September 10, 2014 § 3 Comments

 Lamb Meatballs & Spaghetti

Meatballs and Spaghetti is one of those Italian comfort food which would probably tempt each one of us. A heaping plate of spaghetti topped with hearty tomato sauce and flavoursome meatballs evokes the feeling of a perfect comfort food. And specifically, pasta still remains one of my easy weeknight dinner option, something which I can bank on any day. The life gets easier if I have a big bottle of pre-made passata in my fridge.

Lamb Meatballs & Spaghetti

I have seen my taste buds moving from a strong liking of white cream sauce based pasta to a lighter tangier tomato sauce one. Rather, if I put it this way, it is white sauce which I prefer during cold winter days. While on hot summer day, it is light summery tomato sauce with loads of fresh basil torn straight from balcony plant. Freshly grated Parmesan and freshly torn basil leaves just do the magic trick and make you a wonderful yet easy weeknight treat.

Lamb Meatballs & Spaghetti

This time, I made these lamb meatballs which I adapted from Donna Hay’s magazine, who herself is well known for her fast fresh and simple recipes. This one is a no brainer too, yet it is easy to fall in love with those light and summery flavours. Originally, the recipe called for beef and pork, which I have substituted with an equal amount of lamb mince meat as per my liking. If you want you can cook the meatballs to the half stage (searing in the pan) and store them in air tight container in freezer for using them later. 

Lamb Meatballs & Spaghetti

 

Lamb Meatballs & Spaghetti
Hearty lamb meatballs cooked in light and fresh tomato sauce and topped with Parmesan cheese and basil leaves.
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For meatballs
  1. 2 tbsp olive oil
  2. 500 gm lamb meat, minced
  3. 60 gm fresh white bread crumb
  4. 1/4 cup milk
  5. 1 egg
  6. 2 cloves garlic
  7. 2 tsp mixed dried herbs(oregano/sage/thyme)
  8. Crushed black pepper and salt
  9. 2 tbsp olive oil
  10. 1 onion, finely chopped
For sauce
  1. 2 tbsp tomato paste
  2. 500 gm fresh tomatoes, blanched and peeled
  3. 2 cloves garlic crushed
  4. 1/2 cup lamb stock
  5. 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  6. 1 onion, finely chopped
  7. Crushed black pepper and salt
  8. Handful of fresh basil leaves
  9. 2 tsp dried thyme
  10. Freshly grated Parmesan to serve
  11. 250 gm spaghetti
For meatballs
  1. Mix all the ingredients except olive oil very well in a large bowl.
  2. Wet your hands and roll the meatballs taking 1 tbsp of mixture at a time.
  3. Heat a large frying pan. Add oil and cook the meatballs on medium heat for 4-5 minutes, turning meatballs frequently.
  4. Take out the meatballs from pan and let cool.
For sauce
  1. Heat the oil in the same pan you cooked the meatballs. Add garlic and onions and cook them until soft, around 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add the tomato paste and balsamic vinegar and cook for another 2 minutes.
  3. Add the fresh chopped tomatoes, stock, herbs, salt and pepper and let cook for 5 minutes.
  4. Add the meatballs to the sauce and cook for another 20 minutes, until meatballs are cooked through.
  5. Cook the spaghetti in a large saucepan with boiling water and loads of salt. Drain off the spaghetti once cooked.
  6. To serve, place the spaghetti in serving plates, top with generous amount of meatballs and sauce, followed by Parmesan and fresh basil leaves.
Adapted from Donna Hay
Adapted from Donna Hay
The White Ramekins http://thewhiteramekins.com/

Self Saucing Chocolate Pudding

August 30, 2014 § 5 Comments

Self Saucing Chocolate Pudding Dark chocolate puds, brownies, cakes and all other chocolate desserts are my favourite and they taste even better if topped with a generous scoop of very nice vanilla ice cream. And you can go down the heavenly lanes of taste even further if you drizzle some warm chocolate fudge sauce on top of it. It might sound highly sinful but believe me, we all love such sinful desserts once in a while. Self Saucing Chocolate Pudding And there are times when you crave for such goodness so badly. I have not had even a good dark chocolate bar in recent times, forget about pudding or a cake. Summer had been putting me off from the chocolate and I had been gorging more on fruits than anything else for the dessert. But trust me, you can not stay away from dark chocolate for long if you love having desserts so much. Self Saucing Chocolate Pudding Self Saucing Chocolate Pudding   I had been flipping through the pages of Oz magazine Delicious, which my friend brought me last year, and you know what, it had a large section on chocolate. I felt almost trapped and I couldn’t resist. And I had to make this Self saucing chocolate pudding from Australian Masterchef Matt Preston. Self Saucing Chocolate Pudding     Self Saucing Chocolate Pudding I have a special place for the classic  vintage recipes in my heart. Be it an Indian Kheer (rice pudding) or a Dark chocolate pudding, they have an impact like no other recipe can ever have. And this pudding is amazingly easy and takes no time to bake. It rather surprises you when the sauce oozes out of the bottom of the pan when you dig in your first spoon into it. It is almost magical and divinely tasteful. Self Saucing Chocolate Pudding I divided the pudding to be baked into three smaller pie dishes, but if you like you can make it in one single large ovenproof dish. You can enjoy it warm with some pouring cream or vanilla ice cream or even cold straight out of fridge.  Self Saucing Chocolate Pudding

Self Saucing Chocolate Pudding
dark chocolate self saucing pudding
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Ingredients
  1. 150 gm flour
  2. 200 gm caster sugar
  3. 50 gm unsweetened cocoa powder
  4. 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  5. 60 gm melted butter
  6. 125 ml milk
  7. 1 egg
  8. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  9. 50 gm dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
  10. 2 cups boiling water
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 160°C. Grease an 1.5L (6-cup) or 3 2-cup capacity ovenproof baking dish.
  2. Sift the flour, 110g sugar and 25g cocoa into a bowl. Add dark chocolate and stir to combine. Make a well in the centre.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk melted butter, milk, vanilla extract and egg. Gradually pour into the well, then fold to combine.
  4. Spread mixture evenly into prepared dish. Combine remaining 110g sugar and 25g cocoa and sprinkle over the top of the pudding. Carefully pour 2 cups boiling water over the top of the pudding without disturbing the sprinkled cocoa powder too much.
  5. Bake for 30-35 minutes until the top is firm. Stand for 10 minutes to cool slightly.
  6. Dust the warm pudding with extra cocoa and serve immediately with vanilla ice cream.
Adapted from Delicious Magazine
Adapted from Delicious Magazine
The White Ramekins http://thewhiteramekins.com/

Plum & Basil Popsicles

August 24, 2014 § 3 Comments

Plum & Basil Popsicles

With this post I would officially be signing off with the summer bounty of stone fruits. It was the last of the stash of sweet and puckery plums which I had tucked away in my freezer. I had been wanting to make ice pops, the perfect treat to reminisce the summer and surely the apt way to bid adieu to all the wonderful stone fruits which summer has to offer.

Plum & Basil Popsicles

This year, rains have left us little early and it has become hot and humid again. My basil plant has been ever so growing lately, flourishing heavily like never before. Plum & Basil popsicles seemed to be the right choice for these hot and sunny days. These are the kind of pops which you would have liked probably growing up than being as a kid. They are so puckery and tantalizing! They reminded me of the Plum Sorbet which I had made last year.  They almost taste like a palate cleanser.

Plum & Basil Popsicles

And look at their color! Vibrant red color ice pops, they look quite sultry! Pardon my cheeky language, but truly speaking, this is what I felt, when I first saw the color. And you’d believe that they have the similar character too, only after you take the first bite. Again sweet and sour at the same time and tantalizing your taste buds.

 Plum & Basil Popsicles

Plum & Basil Popsicles
Sweet and sour plum & basil popsicles to tantalize your taste buds through the summer
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Ingredients
  1. 500 gm plums, de-stoned and quartered
  2. 2 cups water
  3. 3/4 cup sugar (adjust sugar depending upon the tartness)
  4. 1/2 cup loosely packed basil leaves, chopped roughly
  5. 1 tbsp kirsch (optional)
Instructions
  1. Put plums, sugar and water into a non reactive saucepan and cook on a medium heat for about 10 minutes, until plums are tender.
  2. Take the saucepan off the heat, add the basil leaves and kirsch and let stand covered for about an hour.
  3. Put the plums in a blender or a liquidizer and blend to make a smooth puree.
  4. Strain the mixture through a sieve. Divide the mixture into ice pop molds and place in freezer for half an hour or until the mixture is lightly set.
  5. Take the molds out of the freezer and insert the wooden sticks into each mold and put them back into the freezer, until completely set.
The White Ramekins http://thewhiteramekins.com/
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