On top of spaghetti, all covered in cheese, I lost my poor meatball when somebody sneezed. Children’s song or cruel, cruel nightmare? Definitely nightmare. The meatball is clearly the most important part of the duo. Sure spaghetti is a great base for meatballs, and a great accessory to a Halloween costume, but spaghetti is an afterthought to good meatballs. Good meatballs are the new boyfriend that make you forget your ex love, Carb-y ever existed. Well not ever, I mean, I am human. But sometimes you have to kick the carbs to the curb, and I have a recipe for meatballs that does just that. Of course, if you aren’t ready to move on from spaghetti, that’s okay too. Don’t worry, I won’t tell anyone.
The secret behind these awesome meatballs is no secret at all, it’s veal. Veal is a very tender cut of meat, so what you end up with is tender meatballs. No knife required here, cause these babies are soft enough to cut with your fork. Now that’s what I’m talking about.
Veal Meatballs (Serves 4)
1 lb. ground veal
3 cloves of garlic, finely minced
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. fresh ground black pepper
½ tsp. oregano
3 tbsp. breadcrumbs
3 tbsp. Tomato sauce
1 28 oz. can of San Marzano tomatoes (whole peeled)
1 28 oz. can of Crushed tomatoes
1 medium red onion, diced
5 gloves of garlic
2 tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Start the sauce first. The longer it cooks, the more flavor it develops. Plus, you will finish cooking the meatballs in the sauce. Heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté for about 10 minutes or until translucent. Add the garlic and sauté for another 5 minutes. If you have an immersion blender, now is the time to whip it out! Add the tomatoes and then blend until your desired consistency. If you don’t have an immersion blender, add the whole tomatoes to the blender and pulse until your desired consistency. I like my sauce a little on the thick side. Add the tomatoes to the pot and reduce heat to a simmer.*
Once the sauce is made, it’s time to start working on the balls! Add the veal to a large mixing bowl. Add remaining ingredients and mix with your hands. Once incorporated, roll into golf ball sized balls. Add 2 tbsp. of olive oil to a pan and heat over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add some balls to the pan. Only add a few at a time, or the temperature of the pan will cool down and the meatballs won’t cook evenly. Brown the meatballs on all sides. Once they are cooked, add them to the sauce. Once all of the balls are cooked and have been added to the sauce, let the sauce simmer on low heat for 30 minutes. Serve naked, and by that I mean without pasta. Or actually naked, whatever you prefer. Be careful though, those balls are hot!
*This recipe makes a lot of sauce! So, if you have extra, which you will, pour it into a plastic container and freeze it. Save it for a rainy day, when you don’t feel like cooking. We all know homemade sauce is so much better than jarred anyway!