When I was finally feeling well enough to eat something other than toast I wanted my favourite dinner, spaghetti and meatballs. I know what you're thinking, meatballs are time consuming to make, what with the mixing, kneading, rolling, frying in small batches, etc... Pfft! Who needs all that, I've simplified the whole process to make it fast and less messy and greasy! (And less painful, I never fail to burn myself when splattering grease is involved.) You can make these as spicy or mild as you like and serve them with whatever kind of pasta your family likes. Buono appetito!
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Meatballs and Marinara
for the meatballs:
1/4 c Italian seasoned bread crumbs
1 egg, lightly beaten
3 tbsp cream (I use half and half, but heavy or light would work)
1/4 c grated parmesan cheese
1 tbsp hot pepper flakes (optional)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp salt
fresh ground black pepper
1 lb lean ground beef
for the marinara:
2 med carrots, diced small
1 onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced small
1/2 c chicken broth
1/2 c tomato paste
1 16oz can of diced plum tomatoes
2 tsp dried basil
salt & pepper to taste
1. In a large bowl mix the bread crumbs, egg, cream, parmesan, hot pepper flakes, garlic and salt and pepper until combined.
2. Add the ground beef and mix using your hands jut until everything is incorporated. (Over-mixing makes tough, dry meatballs)
3. Roll meatball mixture into 1" balls (or use a 1" scoop) and place balls on a cookie sheet. Bake in a preheated 350˚F oven for 20-30 minutes.
4. In the meantime, sautée the carrots, celery and onions in a light drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil for 5 minutes.
5. Add the chicken broth and simmer over medium heat for another 5 minutes or until the veggies are tender.
6. Add the tomato paste, diced tomatoes and seasonings. Simmer over low heat.
7. When the meatballs are done. remove from the cookie sheet and add to the tomato sauce.
8. Serve over cooked pasta of your liking and top with parmesan cheese.
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