Hi lovelies! Since mince is on special at Woolies at the moment and since i bought a kilo of it yesterday when i saw the reduced price – meatballs are definitely on the menu for supper tonight! Check out this recipe for spaghetti and meatballs from New Zealand celeb chef Chelsea Winter – by all accounts, it’s a winner!
250g beef mince
250g pork mince (or just use beef mince)
1/2 cup breadcrumbs (or use 3/4 cup fresh, made in a food processor)
1 onion, finely chopped
3 cloves NZ garlic, crushed
1 free-range egg, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Generous pinch of salt and a good crack of black pepper
1 cup red wine (or use beef stock)
1 1/2 cups beef stock
1/2 cup tomato paste 4
00g can chopped tomatoes in juice
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons brown sugar
Handful halved ripe cherry tomatoes (optional)
Cooked spaghetti (or your favourite shape pasta, or mash)
Fresh basil leaves, torn
Lots of freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Add the mince to a large bowl with the breadcrumbs, onion, garlic, egg, herbs, tomato paste, olive oil and season. Mix gently to combine using clean hands. Shape the mixture into balls slightly bigger than a golf ball. Cover and refrigerate for 20 minutes to set.
Heat a little oil over a medium-high heat in a large frying pan and brown the meatballs all over (do this in batches). Once browned, remove carefully with tongs and set aside on a plate.
Drain any oil from the pan and return it over a high heat. Add the wine (or stock) and let it bubble for 30 seconds, scraping the pan with a wooden spoon to incorporate all those crunchy caramelised meat juices from the meatballs. Add the stock, tomato paste, tomatoes, oregano, balsamic vinegar and sugar. Stir.
Add the meatballs back to the pan and simmer uncovered for 15-20 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened to a thick pasta sauce consistency (it might take longer or less time). Turn the meatballs over once or twice. Add the cherry tomatoes (if using) and simmer another minute or so. Season with salt and pepper, until it tastes right to you.
Just before you drain the pasta, try reserving 1/4 of a cup of the cooking water. Stir that water through the sauce just before you toss it with the pasta (it helps the sauce stick to the pasta).
Toss the sauce through the just-cooked drained spaghetti in the spaghetti cooking pot. Add to serving bowls and sprinkle with cheese and basil. Serve with a side salad, or veggies.
Are you a meatball fan? I’d love to know what your secret ingredient or tip is!