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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Spaghetti and Meatballs

I took the picture above after my first photography lesson from a friend.  I lured him and his family over to my house with my (I wish I could say famous) spaghetti and meatballs.  I do make pretty tasty meatballs though.  The recipe I use is from my Jewish mom apparently has one of the best Italian meatball recipes in existence...yep.  They're extremely soft and moist - so much so that some will actually fall apart in the sauce - creating a super tasty meat sauce out of an ordinary tomato sauce.  Jim comes from a very Italian family with a mom and four other Auntie's who all make delicious meatballs.  He likes my meatballs the best.  So there you have it.  Make these if you want to fall in love with a meatball...or just want to return a favor from a friend.

Spaghetti and Meatballs

For the Tomato Sauce:
olive oil
6 cloves of garlic, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cans crushed tomatoes
1 Tbsp dried basil or 1/4 cup fresh basil

For the Meatballs:
2 lbs ground beef (you could also use veal, lamb, or a mix)
2 eggs
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2/3 cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
2/3 of one of those tiny cans of tomato sauce (6 oz?)
a dash of pepper

1lb. spaghetti

Make your sauce:  Coat the bottom of a large pot with olive oil.  Heat on medium-low.  Add the garlic and onion.  Saute until the onions are translucent.  Add the cans of crushed tomatoes and the basil and combine.  Bring the sauce to a boil and then turn the heat to low.

Now make your meatballs:  Take off all of your rings and thoroughly combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl.  Form your meatballs into whatever size balls of meat you prefer.  Now put olive oil in a nonstick pan and heat on medium.  Once the oil is hot, put your meatballs in a pan and turn them occasionally so that the outsides have browned.  Do this in batches if necessary.  If the oil gets too hot, turn down the heat a little.  Take them out when brown and drain them on a paper towel-covered plate.  Then put the meatballs in your sauce.  I like to let the sauce go for at least 2 hours (today it went 5 hours - the longer it simmers, the better it will taste), stirring occasionally so the sauce doesn't stick to the bottom of the pot.

In yet another pot, boil up your spaghetti and when it is done, drain, return it to its pot and add some of the sauce so it doesn't get sticky.  Serve with romano cheese and crushed red pepper - and garlic bread too!

(Sorry there are no pics from the cooking process, but my hands were coated in raw meat for most of it and I didn't want to keep washing them so that I could touch my camera.)

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