Italian Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Meatballs
For the Vegetables
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes
- 8 ounces baby bella (cremini) mushrooms
- 12 pearl onions (yellow, red, white)*
- 4 large garlic cloves, skin on
- 6–8 inches fresh rosemary, to preference
- 8 individual stems fresh thyme
- 1/4 tsp dried basil (or four large fresh leaves)
- 1/4 tsp dried oregano
- 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 1/8 tsp ground black pepper
- 1/8 tsp salt
- Water for blanching the onions
For the Sausage
- 1 1/4 pound 93% lean ground turkey
- 2 tbsp liquid egg whites
- 2 tbsp Anthony’s Blanched Almond Flour
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 2 tsp dried parsley flakes
- 2 tsp Homemade Italian Seasoning
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
- 1/4 rounded teaspoon whole fennel seeds
- 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
- Add six cups water to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat.
- While the water is boiling, Line two large, rimmed baking sheets with Silpat or parchment paper (parchment will caramelize more), set one oven rack to top position, and another to center position. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
For the Sausage
- Combine all seasonings and almond flour in a small bowl. Add the turkey, vinegar, and egg whites to a large bowl and combine with a silicone spatula and flatten along the bottom of the bowl. Sprinkle the seasoning mixture, a little at a time, while folding the meat mixture repeatedly. Continue sprinkling and folding until all seasoning has been added (this helps to prevent overmixing the meat). NOTE: If making ahead of time, this mixture can be refrigerated up to 24 hours before use. Wrap tightly in plastic and place in a bowl to keep it separate from other foods.
- Finish mixing by hand and divide the mixture into two large balls. Divide each half into two smaller balls (total of four balls). Divide each of the four balls into three equal portions and roll into balls. You will have a total of twelve meatballs. Place the meatballs on one of the prepared pans.
For the Vegetables
- Add salt, pepper, basil, and oregano to a small bowl and set aside.
- Rinse and dry tomatoes and mushrooms. Trim mushroom stems, then halve or quarter mushrooms so they are approximately the same size as the tomatoes. Add to a large bowl.
- Add the pearl onions to the boiling water and blanch for two minutes. Strain the water and fill to saucepan with cold water to stop the cooking process. When onions are cool enough to handle, halve top to bottom, trim the top and bottom of each half, and remove thin outer skin. This should come right off. Add the halved and peeled onions to the tomatoes and mushrooms.
- Drizzle with 1 tablespoon plus two teaspoons of the oil and toss gently – try not to break the onions apart. Sprinkle with the seasoning mixture, toss again, then transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Turn onions cut side down.
- Place the four garlic cloves in the bowl from the vegetables and drizzle with the training teaspoon of olive oil. Coat all sides then place the garlic on the baking sheet, staggered across the pan.
- Snip the rosemary into one-inch pieces and add to the bowl. Break bunches of thyme apart to get six stems, each 2-3” long. Rub the rosemary and thyme around gently in the bowl to coat with leftover oil so they don’t burn while roasting.
- Lay the herbs over the vegetables on the pan, staggering to cover evenly.
Putting it Together
- Place the meatball pan on the center rack and the vegetable pan on the top rack.
- Roast for 25 minutes, then remove both from oven. Tent the meatballs lightly with foil and let rest.
- While the meatballs are resting, discard the rosemary (and fresh basil leaves, if using) and set the thyme aside. Carefully peel the roasted garlic, discard skins, and thinly slice the cloves crosswise with a very sharp knife. Strip the thyme stems by gently pinching the top of the stem and pulling downward to remove the leaves cleanly. Discard the stems and sprinkle the leaves over the sliced garlic. Transfer the meatballs to a serving platter and space evenly. Spoon the vegetables around the meatballs and top with the herbed garlic slices. Serve immediately.
* Half a medium red onion, cut into thin wedges will also work if you’re crunched for time.
Store leftovers in a glass airtight container up to four days.
Nutrition Estimate Per Serving (1/4 VEGETABLE RECIPE + 3 MEATBALLS) – Calories: 320.4, Fat: 18.4, Saturated Fat: 3.8, Trans Fat: 0, Polyunsaturated Fat: .6g, Monounsaturated Fat: 4.6g, Cholesterol: 106.3mg, Sodium: 583.3mg, Potassium: 487.8mg Carbohydrates:8g total/6.6g net, Fiber: 1.4g, Sugar: 2.6g, Protein: 28.6g, Vitamin A: 15%, Vitamin C: 18%, Calcium: 14.9%, Iron: 12% (based on 2,000 calorie diet).
Keywords: ITALIAN CHERRY TOMATOES, ROASTED CHERRY TOMATOES, TURKEY ITALIAN MEATBALLS, LOWFAT, GLUTEN-FREE, GRAIN-FREE, SHEET PAN MEALS, PALEO, LOW-CARB