I love to experiment with meatballs. The possibilities are endless. Today I wanted to see what I could do with some ground chicken and Mexican spices. I thought this would end up more of a soup. But, as it is with most things in my life, if a little is good, a lot is better. So I kept adding rice.....and you guessed it, it ended up more of a a chicken meatball and rice jambalaya. So, decrease the rice to 1 cup if you want this dish more like a soup and use the full 3 cups if you want it thick and casseroley. Is that a word? Anyway, here's my recipe.
48 oz. Chicken broth
1 - 28 oz. can Rotel diced tomatoes and green chilies
1 - 10 oz. can Rotel diced tomatoes with lime and cilantro
1 envelope McCormick white chicken chili seasoning
1 - 14 oz. can petite diced tomatoes
28 oz. water
2 or 3 cups rice (depending on how thick you want the stew)
For the meatballs:
2 lbs. ground chicken
1 small yellow onion, minced
1/4 cup shredded Mexican cheese blend
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1 T. chopped cilantro
½ t. ground cumin
½.t. chili powder
1 t. salt
1 t. granulated garlic
Lime flavored tortilla chips, crushed in food processor to equal ½ cup fine crumbs
In a large Dutch oven, mix first six ingredients and bring to a low boil. Reduce heat to low. While liquids are simmering, make the meatballs.
In a large bowl, mix the meatballs ingredients lightly with a fork. Shape into 1" inch meatballs. Heat 1 T. olive oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Brown meatballs in batches. Do not crowd meatballs or they won’t brown properly. When each batch of meatballs have a nice browned crust, add them to the simmering liquid. Continue until all meatballs are browned.
Let simmer on low heat for 30 - 45 minutes and then add uncooked rice. Cook for 15 - 20 minutes or until rice is soft. Top with shredded cheese, chopped cilantro and/or sour cream.