Chicken Parmesan Meatball Poppers

chicken parmesean meatball poppers

Prep time:  30 mins


  • 1 lb ground chicken breast
  • ¾ cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • 1 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
  • garlic cloves, pressed
  • ½ small onion, grated
  • 2 Tbsp + 1 cup marinara sauce (divided)
  • ½ Tbsp dried Italian seasoning
  • 2 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp fresh cracked black pepper
  • large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup shredded Italian blend shredded cheese


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare a baking sheet by lining with parchment paper.
  2. Set aside 1 cup marinara and shredded Italian cheese.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine all remaining ingredients. Mix well, do not over mix or you will have tough meatballs. Using a 1 tablespoon scoop, portion out meat mixture and place on baking sheet. After all meatballs have been scooped onto tray, roll into balls. TIP: If you lightly wet your hands the meatballs will form better and crack less. Bake for 16-18 minutes until lightly browned.
  4. Turn oven to broil.
  5. Drizzle a spoonful of marinara over each meatball. Sprinkle with shredded cheese.
  6. Broil for 2-3 minutes until cheese is golden brown and bubbly.
  7. Serve and enjoy!

Makes 48 poppers.

Marital Bliss Mountain Doesn’t Exist.

Some friends of mine have recently hit a seriously distressing break up – adultery mixed with close friends and squire relationships does not for an amicable split, make.  It’s hard to have a relationship break up these days with maybe a thousand friends of friends watching on via Facebook.

And everyone has an opinion, whether the situation has anything to do with them or not. The problem is, there is no, “I’ve made it!  This is it!” when it comes to relationships. You can’t just say “I’m married now, I can relax”, or “I’ve found The One (TM), no more work required”. There’s no Mystical Love Mountain that you can orienteer to, conquer and then victoriously plant your flag at the top and say: “Mission accomplished!”

The human experience of life and love is far removed from mountaineering, and is rather more like the constantly undulating waves of a stormy ocean… an endless superposition of the cycles of love and loss, joy and sadness.

Only it’s not endless… we’re all going to die someday.

So that puts a finite limit on how long we get to spend in a relationship anyone and basically means at the outset that every single person you love… you will eventually lose someday.  Some of those loves may end in an acrimonious breakup next week or next month, other loves may end seventy years from now in a nursing home surrounded by family.  Which ever way your fates pan out, doesn’t really matter because either way it’s never easy, and the longer it takes… the more it’s going to hurt, the harder it is to recover and the longer you will grieve. This is just the natural way of things.  

For many people the realisation of this very true reality is crushing… but it doesn’t need to be.  Over time, we can learn to ride the waves of the sometimes stormy, Relationship Ocean, and instead of letting it push you under such that you never want to love again – you can love and lose and chose to carry on.

You can try and find perpetual joy to carry in your heart and allow it to co-exist with the occasional, yet inevitable, moments of reflective sadness, rather than the other way around.

Shake the water from your hair, climb back into your boat, and sail forth on the tumultuous seas with courage and optimism for the future.  We can all learn to be better versions of ourselves.  And we can learn to take the potentially infinite cycle of love and heartbreak without being actually broken.

Personally, I believe that taking the risks are worth it as the payoff can be life affirming, but the choice is for each of us to make for ourselves.


The art thieves, they come in the night.

Last night I had the worst night’s sleep I’ve had in ages, as I tossed and turned until nearly 2am.  Not to mention the weirdest dream as I woke up at 6:30am…

Myself and my friend Crumpetty were stealing a whole pile of art from a Veronese art museum, I have no idea *how* I knew it was a Veronese art museum, because as it happens I have never been to Verona!  But we were definitely cleaning out a Veronese art museum of all it’s decorative art pieces – statuary, antiques, reliquaries and things, but no paintings.   We were putting it all into a courtyard at my old high school to put on display – yes stealing it to put on display for the public to view, pretty clever art thieves, huh!  There were no authorities to be found anywhere and Crumpetty and I were just discussing the merits of each piece we were stealing and how much we liked them, or not.

We had our burly male friends carrying heavy marble statues out of the musuem and another arty friend Danzig was there, telling me there is a whole cult of women who absolutely adore this one particular statue of Io (of Jupiter and Io fame) that we were stealing – he was a huge reclining marble Io, with a gold helm and spear?! and we were taking him out of the large sandstone museum in Verona on one side of the road and putting him down on the other side of road in a courtyard in Australia.  And another friend, Surly, was casually walking across the road with Cellini’s Salt Cellar, telling people he could make one just like it, and it was just sooo bizarre!

My mother was also there and she was all jealous that I had seen crazy Roentgen’ Berlin Secretary Cabinet at the Metropolitan of Art, and wished that she had seen it while she was there too?!?  And then I woke up!

And the weirdest thing about all this… to the best of my knowledge, none of these pieces are in museums in Verona.