Thursday, September 20, 2007

Meatballs and Red Hot Tomato Sauce

I don't remember where I got this recipe, but it is really good. Serve it over noodles or as an appetizer.


2 slices white bread, crusts removed, cut into small pieces
1/4 c. milk
1/2 pound ground pork
1/2 pound ground beef (I've used all beef before, not as good, but still really good)
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
3 small garlic cloves, minced
zest of 1/2 lemon
8 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
3/4 t. salt
1/4 t. pepper
1 large egg, slightly beaten
1 T. olive oil

Place bread in a bowl; pour milk over it. In another bowl, mix beef and pork. Add onion, garlic, zest, and parsley. Add salt and pepper. Mash bread mixture to form paste; add to meat mixture. Mix; add egg. Combine well. Cover with plastic wrap; chill 1 hour (although chilling does make it easier to form the meatballs, I usually skip this step).

Heat oven to 350. Form mixture into small balls. Heat 1/2 T. oil in a skillet over medium heat. Saute meatballs in batches until brown, a few minutes on each side. Transfer to a pan big enough to hold all the meatballs. (I use a 9x13 lined with foil - easy cleanup). Place in oven to finish cooking, about 20 minutes.


3 T. olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
1 1/4 t. salt
1/2 t. pepper
1/4 t. red-pepper flakes, or to taste
1 c. loosely packed fresh basil, cut into chiffonade

Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the chopped onion, stirring so that it does not brown, until soft and fragrant, 3-4 minutes. Add garlic, and cook, stirring another minute.

Add crushed tomatoes and their liquid. Season with salt, pepper, and red-pepper flakes. Add 2 C. cold water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until sauce has reduced and thickened and has a deep, rich tomato flavor, about 20 minutes. Stir in basil just before serving.

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