Old Fashioned All Day Meatballs & Chicken with Baked Vegetable Stuffing in Tarragon sauce

In an effort to clean out my magazines and cookbooklets, I’ve decided to join Magazine Mondays hosted by Cream Puffs in Venice. What I really like is that she isn’t strict about when you post so I can publish these yummy results as I find them.

If you are anything like me, you have a drawer or a box full of recipes from newspapers, magazines, old maiden aunts, grandmothers, friends and every potluck you ever went to and said I have to have that recipe! Now while I usually keep the combination of spices and seasonings somewhat intact, I do make changes that make it more palatable to my family. So I always keep a list of likes, dislikes and allergies and am constantly altering recipes to fly by the seat of my pants.

These recipes have been floating around so long in the box that I have no idea where they actually originated, but one looks like a page from an old, and I mean OLD magazine and the other is handwritten. I have them stapled together with a note to combine them together. I’m like that – whatever works for my family. I had a girlfriend in college who loved fashion but was on such a strict budget there wasn’t room for the things she eyed. I remember Julie borrowing a fancy designer dress from a Joann, a girlfriend of ours for an event and then later that night she took it apart, made a pattern and made her own dress before putting Joanns dress back together. To my knowledge Joann never knew. Now I can’t do that with recipes literally, but I do do it in my mind as I’m eating a particularly tasty tidbit. Some days I feel like an archaeologist unearthing pieces to make a whole from.

2 pounds ground beef
3/4 cup quick cooking oats
1 cup whole milk
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup garlic salt
1 teaspoon white pepper
1 small Vidalia onion, chopped fine
2 eggs
3 tablespoons vinegar
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup raspberry jam
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cup ketchup

  • In a large bowl combine the quick cooking oats, milk, eggs, onion and garlic salt.
  • Crumble the beef over top and then mix in well.
  • Shape into 1-2 inch balls.
  • Place in slow cooker.
  • Mix together the ketchup, vinegar, Worcestershire, raspberry jam and brown sugar.
  • Pour over meatballs.
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-7 hours or until the meat is no longer pink.

With this recipe I found two old scraps of recipes (Chicken with Tarragon Sauce and Baked Tomatoes with Broccoli stuffing) that had been torn from old cookbooklets, one was even handwritten it was so old. The Brussel Sprouts and carrots were my addition for texture and color. They begged me to put them together and make this dish:
serves 4.

4 large chicken breasts cut into tenders
4 + 2 tablespoons butter
2 large tomatoes
1 cup baby carrots, cut into halves
3 cups broccoli florets, cut into small pieces
1 large bunch green onions, sliced
1 sleeve Keebler townhouse crackers, crushed
1 teaspoon tarragon
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons flour

  • Melt 4 tablespoons butter in skillet.
  • Brown each side of chicken piece.
  • While the chicken is browning, wash the tomatoes and cut the tops off. Scoop the insides out*, salt the insides and turn the tomatoes upside down to drain.
  • Transfer chicken pieces to baking dish, but leave enough room for the tomatoes in the center.
  • Add the carrots and Brussel sprouts and saute’ until tender.
  • Transfer them to the baking dishes scattered over the chicken pieces.
  • Add the broccoli, tomato pulp and green onions to the skillet and saute’ until tender.
  • Transfer to a mixing bowl and add crackers. Fill tomato cups. Add any remaining broccoli mixture to the chicken .
  • Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter in skillet.
  • Add flour until golden.
  • Add chicken broth, tarragon, salt, pepper and whipping cream.
  • Bring to a boil while whisking constantly to prevent scorching.
  • Add lemon juice after it boils.
  • Immediately pour over the whole thing.
  • Cover with foil.
  • Bake for 1 hour at 325 degrees.

By using the larger tomatoes you can cut them in half after baking and have a nice presentation on the plate.

*I use a grapefruit knife and it works SUPER!
**I used Brussel Sprouts tonight, but in the future will use all broccoli.

final blog signature.


That sounds wicked good…my friend and I were just talking about (and eating) meatballs the other night…I’ll have to send her this recipe!

Suzanne Casamento

I know exactly what you mean about figuring out what’s in food as you eat it so you can recreate it later. I do it all the time.

BTW, amazing story about your friend from school taking that dress apart! I wish I could do that.

I have to say, I’m surprised and curious about the oats in the meatballs. I’ve never used oats before but it makes sense that they’d be a great bread substitute and they’re good for your heart too. Thanks for the recipe!


now i have my favorite meatball recipe that’s a huge hit around here… but with that said, i am totally going to have to try yours! raspberry jam??? i never would have thought of that! i may just have a new favorite after i try yours!

Alice Audrey

I hardly ever take something apart to make a pattern off it. I just shift the garment around as needed, then make adjustments to it for the next ten years.