Last night I got home rather late and debated whether I wanted to put the effort and time into making a “real” dinner for myself, as right now I am still cooking for one each night due to Joe’s work schedule during the winter season, but, I had a quick snack (almond butter and carrots are a new current fave!) and got to work, still managing to put dinner on the table at 7 pm on the dot. Inspired by this recipe from the Nevada Foodies,  http://www.nevadafoodies.com/pesto-mozzarella-stuffed-venison-meatballs/, I picked up some pepperoni on my way home from work and got stuffin’! This recipe would easily serve 4, especially with a salad on the side to go with. For us, we will have some tasty leftovers.

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 Pepperoni Stuffed Parmesan Elk Meatballs Yield- 21 meatballs, 1 inch diameter

  • 3/4 lbs ground elk burger
  • 3/4 lbs ground venison breakfast sausage
  • 1 tablespoon dry pesto
  • 1/2 cup wheat breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg white
  • 1/2 Tbsp. Worcestershire
  • 1/4 cup+ 2 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese, divided into (3) 2-Tbsp. portions
  • ~1/8 lb thick sliced pepperoni (approx. (5) 2-inch diameter slices)
  • 1/2 tsp. Garlic salt
  • 2 cups dry rotini pasta
  • 1 tsp. butter (optional)

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If making your own breadcrumbs, process in food processor until you have about 1/2 cup. I keep a few frozen bread heels and bread slices that were going stale in the freezer in a ziplock bag and them process them in chunks as needed for breadcrumbs.

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In a mixing bowl using a wooden spoon or your clean hands, combine ground burger and ground breakfast sausage with egg white, breadcrumbs, and Worcestershire.

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  Sprinkle in pesto and 2 Tbsp. of Parmesan cheese and mix into meat.

DSC01605 Cut pepperoni into bite-size pieces.

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Stuff each meatball with a piece of pepperoni.

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 Spray a baking dish (8×8 inch) with cooking spray & form meatballs. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

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Meanwhile, boil water and cook pasta.

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Drain water and sprinkle pasta with garlic salt and the last 2 Tbsp. of Parmesan cheese and stir. Add in a tsp. of butter, if desired.

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Set aside and keep warm.
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 Pull meatballs from oven and sprinkle with another 2 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese.

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 Serve meatballs on top of pasta immediately.

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Jade, while eagerly helping me cook dinner in the kitchen, became very distracted by a barking dog on t.v. and ran over to check it out!

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Yup, there it is!

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Although the smell of the meatballs eventually brought her back to reality. Anyone else have a dog that checks out the t.v. dogs like this? I will say that while Jade will occasionally cock her head to the side at the t.v. when dogs bark or coyotes yip on the hunting channel,  this is the first time she has ever run to the t.v., and she is 11 years old!

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