Ruminations and recipes from a small kitchen in a big city.


A short history of comfort food, part two.

After cheese mac, the world's second favourite comfort food - according to a recent authoritative survey of two people - is meatballs. When you add cheese to the recipe, the desirability of the recipe reaches stratospheric levels. Dishes such as these were frowned upon for years but, recently, 'experts' have decided that cholesterol is no longer harmful. All that wasted energy avoiding cholesterol has probably cause stress-based heart disease in millions of people. So the biggest health tip of all is: never listen to health bureaucrats' warnings.

Meatballs with cheddar and mushrooms.

Place a large fist-sized ball of pork and veal mince into a large mixing bowl and, with your hands, fold into it two or three very finely chopped button mushrooms, half a cup of grated cheddar, half a very finely diced small zucchini, one very finely chopped spring onion, a chopped clove of garlic, a dash of Worcestershire sauce, a tablespoonful of oatmeal, a sprinkling of polenta and a dash of pepper.

Using flour to cut the stickiness, form into balls the size of golf balls and drop into simmering tomato sauce – half a jar of passata, one can of diced tomatoes, plenty of fresh chopped basil and parsley from garden, pepper, salt and a dash of sugar.

Simmer until cooked through thoroughly. Serve over spaghetti and grate cheese liberally.

Drink: McLaren Vale shiraz. Cheers, health bureaucrats! What are you worried about this week?

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