Recipe contest semi-finalist Joshua Cassidy writes, "My father who just recently celebrated his 70th birthday introduced me to homemade pickled jalapenos a year or so ago. They were amazing! They are great just to snack on, but pair with so many things. When my parents come to visit (depending on the season) he brings some up for all of us. My niece, Kayla, has always been an amazing cook even going back to when she was a teenager. I put this recipe together intertwining the jalapenos, her knowledge that she has taught me, and a secret real beef meatball recipe that I know that has always impressed everyone, even some people who generally do not eat beef!"
1 pound salmon filet (sockeye) skin and pin bones removed Available in Our Seafood Subscription Box
1 large egg
¼ cup panko bread crumbs
½ teaspoon of chili powder
½ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley, divided
¼ cup of finely chopped pickled jalapenos.
16 (½-inch) cubes pepper jack cheese
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 large avocado
Juice of 2 medium limes
¼ cup of sour cream
¼ cup of cilantro
2 tablespoons pickled jalapeno juice
Steamed rice for serving
Prepare the Meatballs
Preheat the oven to 350ºF with a rack in the center position. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray.
Prepare the meatballs. Place the Salmon in a food processor and blend until finely chopped. Transfer to a large bow and add the panko, chili powder, 2 tablespoons of the parsley, the garlic, egg, chopped jalapenos, 1 teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper. Stir to combine. Clean the food processor.
Roll and Bake the Meatballs
Divide the mixture into 16 equal portions (about 2 tablespoons each). Using lightly moistened hands, roll each into a ball, tucking a cube of pepper jack cheese into the center. Transfer to the baking sheet..
Bake the meatballs at 350°F until they are slightly brown, about 15 minutes.
Make the Avocado Drizzle
Meanwhile, make the avocado drizzle. In the cleaned food processor, combine the avocado, lime juice, sour cream, cilantro, pickled jalapeno juice and the remaining parsley, and process until smooth. Add a few tablespoons of water to achieve a pourable consistency.
Transfer the meatballs to plates and drizzle with the avocado mixture. Serve with steamed rice.