For my birthday, I decided to do little celebrations here and there with different people so that I would get to enjoy it little by little and not get stressed out at all.
So on Wednesday I was supposed to make dinner for my parents and my brother: Since they usually take me out to dinner (and pay) and unfortunately they know I cook all the time and have a food blog, they started teasing me about how I never cook for them and yada yada.
Which ended up with me in the kitchen in the very day of my birthday, but unable to enjoy myself all that much because I had procrastinated all afternoon and went a bit overboard with the planning of the menu. You see, I had decided all on my own in my crazy little head that I was going to make: spicy meatballs, a dipping sauce, humus and a quinoa salad. Not only that, I was also planning to bake a fancy dessert.
Someone was trying to help me or the universe loves me, because my mom called and said she would take care of dessert… otherwise, I would have been even more buried up to my head in the kitchen.
So I started to prepare everything at 7.30 pm (they were supposed to arrive at 9… nice timing). The meatballs were pretty easy… though there was a tiny problem, I didn´t have any eggs, not a single one, so I had to call up a friend to bring me an egg, yep, you don´t wanna be friends with me haha
That problem solved, I just stuck the meatballs in the fridge while I took care of the rest of my menu. Luckily, I had been sensible enough this time around and bought canned kidney beans for the humus… for some reason I think that boiling kidney beans for an hour wouldn´t have been all that plausible at that particular moment.
The quinoa preparation went smoothly, though by the time I was done, my family had arrived and I really needed to take a shower, so off I went while my mom shaped the meatballs (yes, I know, I am an awesome hostess).
I didn´t fry the meatballs because they were too many and it would have been even more stress. I just put them in the oven for 30 minutes or so with a bit of oil and that was it.
Luckily, the stress was worth it because everything was delicious. And my mom made me a great cake (she even managed to find strawberries by the end of summer), so it was the perfect ending to the day.
But please remind me to take it easy next time, otherwise, I´m going to start wrinkling from all that frowning over the stove!
(Recipe after the jump)
Spicy meatballs (adapted and translated from La Cocina de Mauricio y Eduardo)
ground beef or ground lamb, 1 kilo (2 pounds)
garlic, 2 cloves
bread crumb, 80 g
milk, 2 tablespoons
paprika, 2 tablespoons
tomato extract, 1 tablespoon
chopped cilantro, 2 tablespoons
salt and pepper
oil for frying
soy sauce, 100cc (make sure it´s not too salty)
rice wine, 50cc (I used rice vinegar for sushi and it worked fine)
sesame oil, 1 tablespoon
scallion, 1 (finely chopped)
toasted sesame seeds, 1 teaspoon
grated ginger, 1 teaspoon
1. Place the meat, the chopped scallions and garlic, the egg, the bread crumb (previously soaked in the milk, bread crumb as in the inside part of the bread), the paprika, the tomato extract, the chopped cilantro and the salt and pepper in a bowl.
2. Mix everything together (being a tough mix, your best bet is to use your hands). Let it rest so that all the flavors meld together.
3. Form meatballs the size of a nut. Let them rest in the fridge for 1 hour.
4. Fry them in an abundant amount of oil and dry them in paper towels. (I cooked them in the oven in a pan with some oil and they turned out great as well).