Ultimate Meatballs in Tomato Sauce


Autumn is coming. And it’s my time. By that, I mean my favourite time of the year. From preserving the bounty of summer, to long walks through crunchy leaf laden paths, to a big pot of something deliciously simmering away on the back of the stove, it’s all for me. My birthday is in autumn. It’s football season. Now all I need is a good gluten-free recipe for pie pastry! 

One of the first things I turn to for cooler weather cooking is meatballs. Easily modified, tasty on their own as well as being an excellent addition to many dishes, they’re one of my cool weather kitchen staples. 

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That means I make them often. That includes always looking at ways to make them even better. I’ve found the combination of ground meats gives the best texture, while having enough fat to keep them tasty and light. Of equal importance is the mixing and handling… a light touch is necessary, otherwise you just might end up with a substitute for golf balls.

There are some recipes that pan fry, while others say to poach them in the sauce. Wanting the best of both worlds, I combined the methods; cooking a few minutes on one side, turning for a few seconds, and then adding to the pot of simmering sauce. Use your favourite or try one of mine Tomato Sauce: Master Recipe, which comes together in mere minutes.

Serve these with your favourite pasta, but do try other options like polenta, mashed potatoes or spaghetti squash. Buon appetito~

Ultimate Meatballs in Tomato Sauce
Yields 18
A combination of ground meats for tender and light meatballs, a staple for every kitchen!
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
45 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
45 min
Ingredients
  1. A batch of tomato sauce
For the Meatballs
  1. 1/2 lb. medium ground beef
  2. 1/2 lb. regular ground beef
  3. 1/4 lb. ground turkey
  4. 1/2 tsp Kosher salt
  5. 1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
  6. 1 egg, beaten
  7. 1 clove garlic, minced or grated
  8. 1/4 small onion, grated
  9. 1/4 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  10. 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
  11. 1 tsp Italian oregano
  12. 1 TBSP olive oil, approx. (for frying, as needed)
Instructions
  1. Prep your sauce in a large Dutch oven type pot, and keep it at a simmer.
  2. Add all ingredients for meatballs to a large mixing bowl.
  3. Using your hands, and with a light touch, mix just until combined and then form into approx. 2" round balls, setting aside on plastic wrap or wax paper for easy clean up!
  4. Put a large non stick or cast iron skillet to heat, over medium; when hot, add the oil.
  5. Cooking in batches, add meatballs and cook for approx. 5 minutes on one side, until a nice crust is formed.
  6. Turn gently and cook for just a few seconds, then add to the pot of simmering sauce.
  7. Remove extra fat from the pan as required.
  8. Cook for approx. 5 minutes - overcooking will make them tough.
  9. Serve with pasta, polenta or mashed potatoes.
Notes
  1. If you want to make sure they're cooked through, remove one and cut it open. It really won't take long and you don't want to overcook them.
  2. This recipe will make 18 - 20 meatballs.
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