Paleo Sweet and Sour Meatballs with Bell Pepper, Onion and Pineapple. Yum.

By on June 7, 2012
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The Paleo people are sometimes misunderstood.  They do not say you need to just tear the meat off the bone, but, rather encourage a diet made up of grass fed meats, wild caught fish, fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts and berries.  Now what could be wrong with that?
What they don’t want you eating are the GMO overly processed grains, sugars, or HFCS.  The number of people I know personally who have gone on such a regimen and felt entirely renewed and well is really impressive.
One guy I know has lost 35 pounds, lost his panic attacks, and finds he’s able to work longer, faster, happier.  Another fellow I know has lost fifty pounds, has had to buy all new clothes, and says his cognition and ability to concentrate for long periods of time has gone through the roof.  Good thing too.  He’s an independent film maker.  Lotsa work.
Here’s a recipe I developed that will not only make the hard-core paleo people happy, but will also please the children at your table.  Nothing wrong with that.  It’s gluten free, and fabulous.
Sweet and Sour Meatballs with Onions,  Bell Peppers and Pineapple Chunks
Makes 6 servings
1 large organic egg
1-1/2 pounds grass fed ground beef
1 teaspoon sea salt + freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Sauce:
1 medium sweet onion, cut into large chunks
1 small sweet red or orange bell pepper cut into large chunks
1 small green bell pepper cut into large chunks
1 cup fresh pineapple chunks
1 cup chicken stock
¼ cup honey
¼ cup red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon arrowroot powder* dissolved in 2 tablespoons water
In a medium bowl, beat egg until frothy, then combine with meat, salt and pepper, and garlic.  Mix thoroughly, using your hands then form into meat balls which you lay out on wax paper.  Small ones for cocktail parties, larger ones for dinner.
Heat oil in a large skillet then brown the meatballs on all sides, cooking through, turning as needed.
Make the sauce by combining onion, pepper, and pineapple chunks in a medium saucepan with chicken stock, honey and vinegar.  Bring to a boil.  Dissolve arrowroot powder in a couple tablespoons water, then add to the pan.  Cook and stir until the sauce is clear, shiny and thick.  Pour over the meatballs in the skillet.  Heat thoroughly, then serve.
*Arrowroot powder,  until corn starch or flour, does not come from a grain, but rather from a rainforest tuber.  It is considered to be gluten-free, and makes a powerful thickening agent.  1 teaspoon will thicken about 1 cup liquid and create a clear, glistening, shiny sauce or pudding.  In the past,  arrowroot biscuits were made for babies because of their ease in digestion for delicate stomachs.  It’s expensive in the grocery store, being sold only where spices are.  Best you get it at a health food store, where it can often be found in 1 pound packages.
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Linda Eckhardt

About Linda Eckhardt

Linda West Eckhardt, is an award winning journalist, food writer, and nutritionist. Her more than 20 cookbooks have garnered prizes including the James Beard prize for the best cookbook for a text she wrote with her daughter, Katherine West DeFoyd, entitled Entertaining 101, Doubleday. Their follow-up book, Stylish One Dish Dinners, Doubleday, was also nominated for a James Beard prize. Their next book, The High Protein Cookbook, Clarkson Potter, remains a best seller after 12 years. That book was designed to accompany low carb diet plans. Her ground-breaking book, Bread in Half The Time, Broadway Books, was named the Best Cookbook in America by the prestigious IACP, The Julia Child award. Her award winning radio work with Jennifer English, for a national show on the Food and Wine radio network, was nominated for a James Beard Prize for a show called, “I Know What You Ate Last Summer.”