Real, straight talk: It has taken me about 4 winters to perfect this recipe so be grateful I’m opening up and letting you into my kitchen with my fames-within-my-inner-circle meatball recipe. Ya dig?
Ok, now that we’re done worshipping at the alter of the stove (my stove, obv). Let me start my saying this. I am a huge a meatball lover. I’ve had The Meatball Shop balls, Batali’s balls, your nonna’s balls, your tia’s balls. You name it, I’ve belly-ed it. However, being somewhat OCD in the kitchen, I scoured the internets, took techniques from cooking school and interrogated your Nonna bordering on water torture (true) to perfect and refine my meatball ‘n sauce recipe. I call this, CATEGORICALLY, the best meatball recipe. Ever. EK Out.
I use a simple, tart, tomato-y sauce to compliment the balls. Obv Marcella Hazan’s cult recipe is boss. Go easy on the salt as the meatballs have Pecorino Romano cheese incorporated. You can always add salt, but you can’t take it away #evasays
28 ounces whole peeled tomatoes from a can. (San Marzano only please)
5 tablespoons unsalted butter (if you use salted butter, careful adding any more salt)
1 medium-sized yellow onion, peeled and halved
Salt to taste
- Chop the whole tomatoes into ½ inch cubes
- Put the tomatoes, onion and butter in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat.
- Bring the sauce to a simmer then lower the heat to keep the sauce at a slow, steady simmer for about 45 minutes stirring occasionally.
I like a meatball with a lighter mouth feel so don’t overwork the balls by over handling
2 pounds ground beef, veal and pork (fresh from the butcher please!)
4 large cloves garlic, grated
1 cup onion, grated
1 egg (reserve 1 more in case mixture is not wet enough)
3/4 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese
1 teaspoon of salt
ground black pepper to taste
2 cups stale bread, cubed
- Combine the stale bread, grated garlic and grated onions in a bowl and mix to combine. Cover with whole milk. Let it sit for at least 10 minutes to soften.
- Combine the meat, egg and Pecorino Romano with the bread mixture and mix very well with your clean hands. Season with salt and a few turns of fresh ground pepper. The mixture should be very wet. Add another egg if needed.
- Make balls slightly larger than a golf ball. Careful with too munch handling. These pups need their space.
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Brown meatballs in batches and place into 325 degree oven until cooked through. About 15 minutes.
- Once the meatballs are done, place gently into simmering sauce for about 15 minutes.
- My favorite way to enjoy this dish is with a few slices of good bread and topped with fresh parsley. I find pasta unnecessary with this dish.
Makes about 20 balls.
Oh. If you are a weirdly psychotic about calories, Mama did the count for you:
117 calories per ball.
Holler at me with ?’s.