We are back from Thailand!! It was such an incredible trip, which you might have guess from my Instagram updates and I will be posting all about it very soon, but let’s get back in to the swing of things with a new recipe. Of course it has to be this Thai Chicken Meatballs recipe.
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We love hosting dinner parties, although we don’t get to do it nearly as much as we would like to, and we usually host one once we get back from a trip so we can catch up with what our friends have been up to whilst we were away, and also share some stories from our travels. Don’t worry, we don’t get out our projector and have a slide show of our holiday snaps. Do people still do that?
What better way to catch up with friends when you get back from a trip than to cook them a meal inspired by your travels. Whilst we didn’t eat or even see a dish like this when we were in Thailand, it is full of all of the flavours that became part of our daily life for 2 weeks. Lemongrass, chilli, lime and coconut. I was worried that I would get bored of it, but I really didn’t
Our dinner parties have been known to get a little crazy at times, but usually later in the evening. I remember we hosted a Mexican themed dinner party once and there was way too my tequila consumed and then the guys challenged each other to a chilli eating contest. It was hilarious to watch, but it didn’t look like much fun to take part in.
Although they can get a little wild, we like to keep them healthy too. Well, mostly, there is still room for some wine and dessert of course. I thought I would share some of my tips on how to host a healthy dinner party.
– Make a main dish and sides that can be put on the table for people to help themselves. That way, everyone can get a portion that is right for them, and they don’t feel like they are overeating to just be polite.
– Have lots of vegetable based side dishes. A big bowl of green salad with a homemade vinaigrette is always a must at our dinner parties. We also put out some steamed or roasted vegetables too.
– Try to bake or grill the food, rather than frying. Not only will it be healthier, but your guests won’t feel as heavy and sleepy after eating. The worst feeling is wanting a nap during a dinner party because the food was so heavy.
– Make sure your guests always have water. No doubt there will be an abundance of wine and cocktails, if it is anything like the dinner parties we go to or the ones we host, but no-one wants to be the messy drunk at the dinner party, so make sure everyone is hydrated. We put out a couple of jugs of infused water such as cucumber and mint or with just fresh lemon or lime.
Of course we use our BRITA jug first to make sure the water is filtered and tasting as good as it possibly can. You really can taste the difference, so it is definitely worth buying a just to keep your guests hydrated with great tasting water.
– Go easy on the extras. I can sometimes forget how much cheese or sauce I am adding to a dish, so it is best to put them in bowls on the table and let people help themselves.
– If you are serving bread with the meal, instead of putting butter on the table, try a bowl of really good quality balsamic vinegar for your guests to dip their bread in.
– Go with a healthy appetiser. I love those little nibbles with cocktails at the start of the evening, but the calories can soon add up before you have even eaten dinner. Instead, think about serving some vegetable sticks with a homemade yoghurt and herb dip.
– If you are serving dessert (I am not sure why I say if. I mean when.), then serve up a bowl of fruit salad to go with it. That means everyone can have a slice of that delicious homemade cake and have some fresh fruit to go with it too.
– Finally, sit back, relax and ENJOY! Health is more than just physical health, it is mental health too. Relaxing your diet a little for one night and enjoying yourself with your friends isn’t going to do any harm.
Ingredients – Serves 4
3 Chicken breasts
2 lemon grass stalks
1 thumb sized piece of ginger
2 green chillis
3 garlic cloves
Juice of 2 limes
4 tbsp water
1 tbsp soy sauce
10g coriander (cilantro)
8 shallots, diced
1 tin of chopped tomatoes
1 tin of light coconut milk
Half a head of cabbage, shredded
Lime and coriander (cilantro) rice to serve (optional)
1) Put the lemon grass, ginger, chillis, garlic, lime juice, water, coriander and soy sauce in to a blender and blend until it is a paste.
2) Put the chicken breast in a food processor and blend until it is ground in to a mince. Put in a bowl with half of the paste mixture and mix well. Roll in to 16 meatballs and put on a baking tray and put in the oven at 190C for 25 minutes.
3) Heat a little oil in a pan and add the shallots and the rest of the paste and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add the coconut milk, chopped tomatoes and the cooked meatballs and gently simmer for 10 minutes before serving.
Nutritional Information – per serving:
Do you host a lot of dinner parties? Any funny stories to share?
**This Thai Chicken Meatballs recipe was commissioned by BRITA, however all opinions are my own**