Saturday, 16 April 2016

Vietnamese Meatballs (Xíu Mại)

My middle one asked for his favourite recipe by grandma - xíu mại (Vietnamese meatballs) which I did not get a chance to write out yet, or really just was a little lazy as mum would always cook it for us. She's now back in Sydney so over FaceTime she gave me her recipe and walked me through the steps. I was surprised how easy it was and wish I had tried to make these delicious meatballs earlier. 


Vietnamese Meatballs (Xíu Mại)
Vietnamese Meatballs (Xíu Mại)
My mum's original recipe contained peas in the sauce, we don't eat peas anymore so she leaves them out but I do remember them being so good in the sauce! You can also add diced carrots or another vegetable to bulk up the meatballs with more veggies if you like. The best part to these meatballs is the củ sắn (known as yam bean or jicama) which adds a nice sweet crunch to the meatballs.

Vietnamese Meatballs (Xíu Mại)
You can find củ sắn (known as yam bean or jicama) in most Asian grocers,
apple or pear would work well as a substitute if you are unable to find them
I found some interesting health benefits to the yam bean here. While the roots and vine are poisonous, the yam bean once peeled is delicious raw as a snack, in salads, stir fries and other cooked dishes. They are a great source of fibre and Vitamin C and contain lots of other vitamins and minerals. They do have a high carb content so have them every now and then.

Vietnamese Meatballs (Xíu Mại)
they make a great snack on their own with salt, chilli powder and lime juice

Vietnamese Meatballs (Xíu Mại)

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Serves 4

Vietnamese Meatballs (Xíu Mại)
Vietnamese Meatballs (Xíu Mại)
You will need:
  • 500 grams pork mince (organic pasture raised if possible)
  • 200 grams yam bean (peeled)
  • 6 ripe tomatoes (or 1 tin of diced tomatoes, I prefer using fresh tomatoes as we no longer eat tinned food)
  • 1/2 brown onion
  • 2 large cloves of garlic minced
  • 3/4 tsp salt and extra for sauce (buy on iherb or amazon)
  • 3/4 tsp pepper and extra for sauce (buy from iherb or amazon)
  • olive oil or fat of choice for sautéing
Method
  • Pre-heat oven 180c degrees (356f degrees)
  • Wash and place tomatoes on baking tray, place in warm oven for 20 mins or until skins split, set aside to cool (skip if using tinned tomatoes)
  • Meanwhile, set your steamer on the stove
  • Slice the bottom and top off the yam bean and peel
Vietnamese Meatballs (Xíu Mại)
Slice the bottom and top off then peel the yam bean
  • slice the yam bean in half and steam for 20 minutes, set aside to cool
Vietnamese Meatballs (Xíu Mại)
slice the yam bean in half and steam for 20 minutes
  • While the yam bean is steaming and tomatoes are roasting, finely dice the brown onion
  • Place 1 tbsp of olive oil or fat of choice in saucepan and saute onions for 5 minutes 
  • Place in mixing bowl with pork, 3/4 tsp salt, 3/4 tsp pepper
  • When the tomatoes and yam bean are cool enough to handle, remove the seeds and skin from the tomatoes (leave the oven on)
  • Place 1 tbsp of olive oil or fat of choice and sauce the garlic lightly for 1 minute, add the tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes breaking up the tomato pieces as much as you can, set aside
  • Finely dice the yam bean and add to the pork mixture
  • Measure out about 1 tbsp of the pork mixture and roll into balls
  • Place the meatballs in a baking dish
  • Pour over the tomato sauce and bake in the oven for 30 minutes
Vietnamese Meatballs (Xíu Mại)
Pour over the tomato sauce over the meatballs and bake in the oven for 30 minutes
  • Serve with your favourite greens, cauli-rice or zoodles 
  • My kids just eat them straight as is!
Hope you enjoyed another one of my mum's recipes :)

Vietnamese Meatballs (Xíu Mại)
Vietnamese Meatballs (Xíu Mại)

May xx
Love, create, explore & inspire <3


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