Edamame Pecan Pesto with Turkey Pancetta Meatballs

We like to think of our cookbooks as reference material (this helps us justify buying them just because).  Something we use for inspiration.  We have seemed to accumulate quite a few and, although we sit with them every day, we do not always open them up.  We have decided to make an effort to cook one thing from a cookbook each week.  This week we started with Martha Stewart’s Dinner at Home.  Now, you probably either love her or hate her.  At our house one of us is indifferent, and the other is more on the love side.  So much so that I can remember the day my very first Living magazine arrived at the door.  I am guessing that was at least twenty or more years ago.  Don’t tell my husband but….I still have all of them. They are just too gorgeous to get rid of…and full of great tips and information.  Anyway…back to the book.  Dinner at Home is a beautiful book.  Clean with gorgeous photos and full meal ideas.  We loved the idea of the turkey meatball and decided to change up our pesto but keep the meatball exactly as it is in the book.


This dinner was super easy to make and was prepped during the day when our kids were at school so that the after school cooking time would be kept to a minimum.  Nothing worse than the constant “when are we eating…is dinner ready yet?” groaning that seems to happen at our house each afternoon.



1 cup shelled edamame (cooked and cooled)

1/2 cup toasted pecans

1 small garlic clove

1/2 cup parmesan cheese (ours was chopped roughly)

1/3 cup of olive oil

1 1/2 cups fresh mint leaves

The garlic and pecans were put through the food processor until combined.  The cheese and oil were added until the mixture resembled a paste.  We added the edamame, mint leaves, salt and pepper and pulsed until combined.

This was transferred to a bowl and topped with a layer of olive oil and put in the fridge.


Turkey and Pancetta Meatballs (take directly from Martha Stewart’s Dinner at Home)

1 pound ground turkey

1 ounce thinly sliced pancetta, finely chopped 1/4 cup

1/2 onion finely chopped

1 garlic clove, minced (we omitted this)

3/4 cups fresh breadcrumbs (fine)

Salt & Pepper

1 large whole egg plus one egg yolk

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh sage

1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

Olive oil for frying


The turkey, pancetta, onion (garlic) and bread crumbs were gently mixed in a large bowl.  The salt and pepper were added in.  The egg and yolk, sage and zest were stirred in and the mixture was formed into one inch meatballs.

The olive oil was heated in a large heavy skillet and the meatballs were cooked in a single layer about 10-12 minutes until browned on all sides. Please note that cooking time may vary- be sure to cut into one meatball to test temperature/doneness.

The pesto was mixed with a ladle full of pasta water to form a sauce and then mixed in with the angel hair pasta we were serving it with.  The meatballs were added to the top along with a few extra pieces of mint and edamame.  The entire dinner was sprinkled with some freshly grated parmesan.


This dinner was really delicious.  The kids have been begging for meatballs and this satisfied their craving while remaining on the healthy side.  Maybe not as decadent as our duck liver pate meatballs we made a couple of summers ago…but we are trying to be healthier SOME of the time.



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