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Blueberry BBQ Meatballs with Blueberry, Mint and Lemon Quinoa Salad

Posted Apr 23 2009 5:28pm
Today's featured SuperFood is Blueberries. I absolutely love blueberries, so I hate that their season is so short! They can be pretty expensive in the off season, so when I do get them, I go for the frozen, organic berries. However, for one weekend, a local orchard has u-pick, and last summer, my mom and I picked 18 lbs. in 1 hour! I think it was July 4th weekend.
So for dinner tonight, I wanted to incorporate them in as many dishes as possible. I automatically thought of salad because last summer I made Liv's blueberry vinaigrette, which is just amazing. I did make a few subs tonight, and it was just as delicious.
Then I thought about how to incorporate blueberries into a protein and a starch. I thought it would be great in a grain based salad, so I decided to make quinoa. I love blueberry with mint and with lemon, so I combined all 4 ingredients to make a delicious salad. I found some locally made Blueberry Blossom Honey, which sweetened up the quinoa salad dressing nicely.
For the protein, I knew I'd have to put blueberries in a sauce. I've seen balsamic blueberry sauce, so I thought of another sauce I could try. I've seen pomegranate bbq sauce, so I decided to try out blueberries. They worked out perfectly! The sauce was smoky, sweet, tart, and the beef was so tender and crunchy on the outside and super moist inside.





Mixed Greens Salad With Blueberry Vinaigrette

1 sack of organic mixed greens
1/4 red onion, sliced
1/4 c. pecans
1/4 c. croutons

Blueberry Vinaigrette:
1/4 c. Champagne Vinegar
2 tbsp. EVOO
1/2 c. blueberries
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp finely ground white pepper
1/4 c. lowfat plain yogurt
1/4 c. organic pomegranate blueberry juice (or sub 1 tbsp. honey)

Arrange salad ingredients in a bowl.
In a blender (or magic bullet) whirl dressing until smooth. Add EVOO to thin, if necessary, or more blueberries to thicken.
Dress salad and serve. Dressing will separate as it sits, so use right away.


Blueberry, Mint and Lemon Quinoa Salad

1 c. dried quinoa
1 lemon, zested
1 lemon, juiced
2 tbsp. EVOO
2 tbsp. minced mint
2 tsp. Blueberry Honey
Salt and pepper
1/2 c. blueberries

Rinse quinoa for a minute until cold running water.
Add to a pot with 2 c. water, bring to a boil, turn to low and simmer for 15 minutes.
Drain and let sit.
In a mixing bowl, combine zest, juice, EVOO, salt and pepper. Whisk to combine.
Add minced mint and quinoa (which should be a little warm), toss to coat.
Add blueberries, fresh is best, but if they're frozen, rinse them so they run clear or they'll stain the salad (mine stained it a bit).
Toss gently so the blueberries don't break, serve at room temperature, or refrigerate and eat chilled.


Blueberry Chipotle BBQ Sauce and Meatballs

Sauce:

1 tbsp. EVOO

1 red onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, smashed

1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes

1 tbsp. red wine vinegar

1 tbsp. Dijon mustard

2 tbsp. dark brown sugar

2 tbsp. blueberry blossom honey

1/2 tsp. cayenne

2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

¼ c. blueberries

1 chipotle in adobo

Meatballs:

8 oz. lean ground beef

1/2 c. oats, ground

1 egg white

1/2 yellow onion, grated

2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

Salt and pepper


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Heat EVOO in a small saucepot over medium heat. Add onions and garlic.

Season with salt and pepper, sautee' for 5 minutes.

Add remaining ingredients, bring to a simmer, and cook for 15 minutes.

While sauce cooks, prepare meatballs.

Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat.

Add all ingredients in a bowl, toss gently, form into 10 meatballs.

Spray skillet with nonstick spray, drop in meatballs. Brown on all sides, then place in a baking dish.

Spoon all BBQ sauce ingredients into the blender, add a bit of the juice.

Blend for 30 seconds, add a bit more juice if sauce is too thick.

Pour over meatballs, place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes. Serve.


These are some of the ingredients used for tonight. I can't ever find plain champagne vinegar, so I used the orange muscat from TJ's. Also, for the mint, any kind will do, I think that's spearmint.

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