Thursday, May 24, 2012

Chef Tess Bakeresse™ Instant Marinara and Meatballs from Food Storage

Hello my Darlings! I have been in California working on some epic plans for the future and I'm finally back in town long enough to write a blog post. I've missed it!
Today I'm guest posting on  Honeyville Farms Blog  Cookin' Cousins! Being the chef for Honeyville is such a fun job and I can't believe how many adventures I am having writing the cookbook and preparing new and delicious meals using their foods! I was able to tour their facility in Rancho Cucamonga, California earlier this week and I have to say...I'm speechless. It is amazing to see the behind-the-scenes view of company and I'm very happy with what I've seen so far.  At any rate, skip over to see the Cousin's blog here since they have the printable version of today's post. I'm posting the information here on my blog as well. Enjoy!
 Today I want to share a simple and easy dinner that is ready in 30 minutes or less using just food storage.  Freeze Dried Ground Beef is interesting stuff isn't it? The Benefits of Freeze Dried Meat are pretty amazing and the shelf life is 10-15 years if kept in a cool dry place. I cook with it a lot more than I ever thought I would just because it is so convenient and I love developing recipes that people can really use. I had a gal ask me what I do with the ground beef if I wanted to make meatballs or a meatloaf and I wanted to share my simple method for that.  I've also got some great tips on How to Use Tomato Powder to make an Instant Marinara sauce with excellent flavor and a 10-15 years shelf life! That's awesome right?! Usually a good marinara takes a long time to develop that flavor. It's especially amazing if you can a make it so delicious your family won't mind eating it any night of the week.

Chef Tess Bakeresse™ Instant Marinara
 and Meatballs from Food Storage
Ingredients:
Meatballs:
2 cup Honeyville Freeze Dried ground Beef
1 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
1/4 cup Honeyville Freeze Dried Onions
1/2 cup Honeyville Whole Egg Powder
1 tsp Chef Tess Romantic Italian Seasoning
1 tsp garlic powder
Sauce:
1/2 cup Honeyville tomato powder
1/4 cup Honeyville freeze dried onions
1/4 cup Honeyville freeze dried bell peppers
1/4 cup Honeyville freeze dried mushrooms
2T Honeyville dehydrated honey
2tsp Chef Tess Romantic Italian Seasoning
1/4 cup Ultra Gel (modified corn starch) available in Honeyville retail stores

To make the meatballs, combine the meatball dry ingredients in a quart size bowl mixing well. Add 1 1 1/3 cup hot water (not boiling but very hot). Stir the water into the beef mixture and then allow the mixture to sit 10 minutes to fully hydrate and becomes a workable mass. Mmm. Meat moosh.
Form into 18 small meatballs and place on a lightly oiled baking sheet about a half an inch apart.
Now...bake them 15-20 minutes at 350 degrees until firm to the touch. I like to lightly tent aluminum foil over the sheet pan, as this helps the meatballs to steam and keeps them tender.  Remove from the oven and serve hot or cool and place in a fridge (covered) for later use.

To prepare the instant sauce:

Combine the dry ingredients in a half gallon size pot.
Add 3 1/2 -4 cups warm water (depending on how thick you want your sauce) and stir well. Stir over low heat. Cooking the sauce is optional, by the way.  If you are just wanting a fast pizza sauce or bread stick dipping medium this stuff will make you happy! I usually do the sauce heating while the meatballs bake. This is also the time I start the water boiling if I'm serving the sauce and meatballs with pasta. Usually I just hide somewhere with a steaming pot of liquid happiness and a spoon and hide. Try not to think about how weird I am. Weirdness is a gift that I will always claim...(said as I strap on my moon-boots and rick-rac embellished pocket protector).
Stir sauce until heated through and vegetables are tender. Add the meatballs to the sauce and serve over steaming hot pasta.
You know what else? This magical marinara sauce is great for long-term food storage, unlike canned sauces. Plus you control all the ingredients! Combine the dry ingredients in a half pint jar with a tightly fitting lid and an oxygen absorber and it is good 10-15 years if kept in a cool dry place. Now that is amazing!

There you go. Make some beautiful meatballs and marinara with your food storage. It's sure to impress your mother-in-law.

Always My Very Best,
Your Friend Chef Tess

13 comments:

Glo said...

Hello Tess, I've been enjoying your blog in my email for a while now and can't wait to try more of your recipes. Keep it up! What would be the cost of this recipe?

http://offthegridat-30.blogspot.ca/

Anonymous said...

Can you use the beef tvp instead of the freeze dried ground beef? Kindly advise. GREAT post!

Chef Tess said...

Cost is right around 9$ for the meatballs and under a dollar for the sauce for 6 servings. So figure under 2$ a person for dinner.

Ingies said...

Hi, Tess - Just wondering when your next cookbook comes out. I thought I read something about a meal in a jar / 52 Method / food storage cookbook coming out soon but perhaps I was imagining things . . . Thank you for doing all of this work so the rest of us just have to load up our jars!

Ingies said...

One more question Tess - I apologize. I was just ordering spices and am wondering if the Wise Woman of the East mix contains Fenugreek. It is commonly used in Eastern cooking but I'm allergic to it and want to avoid it. I'm also operating on the assumption that all of your spices are free of msg. Is that accurate? Thanks!

RV Trip USA said...

My daughter-in-law and I are looking forward to making your jar recipes for our long term storage. I'll be halving them for pint storage. I look forward to your book on the meal jar recipes (a publication date yet?). Meanwhile, you might think about cross-referencing them for ingredients, like all recipes that use tomato powder, or all recipes that use freeze dried meats, etc. Since these items come in such huge quantities, a No. 10 can, could we just 'revacuum pack' unused quantities till our next jar-packing party?

Chef Tess said...

Ingies,
The cookbook is coming out Oct/November depending on how quickly things go with the publisher. I'm so excited! The Wise Woman does not contain fenugreek. It is a sweet baking spice blend but because it uses a lot of Eastern spices we chose that name.

RV Trip USA:
I love your comment and yes! You can totally re-pack into smaller quantity jars. I do that. If you send me an e-mail chef-tess@hotmail.com I have a chart that has all the quantities cross-referenced that one of my sweet students put together. You're more than welcome to it. Best wishes always.

Anonymous said...

What a brilliant idea! I am wondering though if you could omit the cornstarch gel stuff and just add less water to get the same consistency in the sauce? or a different thickener that is shelf stable? Thanks

Chef Tess said...

You can use cornstarch in place of the ultra-gel. It works as well. Or, yes, use 1 cup less water.

Chef Tess said...

Thank you for bringing that to my attention. Yes it is 1 1/3 cup. Yikes. 11 would be soup.

elaine said...

I finally made these tonight and they worked great. The only tweak I'd make is to reduce the amount of breadcrumbs, as it was pretty pronounced in the finished product.

Thanks once again for opening up our food storage horizons!

Marilyn said...

This sauce is so great! It has become a permanent part of my long term and current pantry. We love it with tortellini and with a bit less water as pizza sauce. Like the bit of a kick from your spice blend. Purchased your e-book and the Gourmet Food Storage Handbook and am looking forward to the Meal in a Jar book next.

Thanks for all you do.

Marilyn

Marilyn said...

This sauce is so great! It has become a permanent part of my long term and current pantry. We love it with tortellini and with a bit less water as pizza sauce. Like the bit of a kick from your spice blend. Purchased your e-book and the Gourmet Food Storage Handbook and am looking forward to the Meal in a Jar book next.

Thanks for all you do.

Marilyn