Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Spaghetti and Meatballs Take 2

Last night I decided to do a second attempt of some spaghetti and meatballs. As I suggested in my previous meatball post, I wanted to test this out with our favorite sauce recipe and mix things up a bit. The result was pretty amazing, even though I had to make a few judgement calls on some substitutions since I was resolved not to go to the market this week until my Christmas Market Extravaganza (I'm cooking Christmas Eve dinner and Christmas Brunch this year since it's our first year with the kiddo which means we get to stay home for Christmas fun...I'm sure lots more recipes will follow...) Anyway, this is what I came up with...

Spaghetti and Meatballs
(Makes 12 meatballs)

For the Meatballs:
2 slices of white bread, crusts removed
1/4 cup skim milk
3 Tbsp. dried minced onion
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 lb ground beef
1/2 tsp dried oregano (or 1/2 Tbsp fresh)
1/2 tsp dried basil (or 1/2 Tbsp fresh)
1/2 tsp dried parsley (or 1/2 Tbsp fresh)
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg, lightly beaten

For the Sauce:
1/2 lb ground beef
small white onion, chopped
14.5 oz can stewed tomatoes
8 oz can tomato sauce
8 oz water
1 can condensed tomato soup
1/2 c. ketcup
Italian seasoning, garlic salt, and pepper

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a small bowl tear the pieces of bread into smaller bits and soak in the milk. Mash with a fork until it makes a mushy paste.
  3. In a bowl, mix all of the meatball ingredients together (including your milk-bread paste) using your hands.
  4. Make 12 golf-ball sized meatballs and place them on a foil covered baking sheet.
  5. Bake at 400 for 20 minutes or until the meatballs are cooked through.
  6. While the meatballs are baking, brown the rest of the ground beef with the onion in a large skillet (you'll want one large enough to hold all the meatballs...and a lid would be awesome as well).
  7. Add in the rest of the sauce ingredients and turn down the heat to let the sauce simmer (I had to use 8 oz of water because I used up my last can of tomato sauce, if you have an other can, use that...or a larger can to begin with that would be better but the water wasn't so bad since the meatballs brought in some extra flavor.)
  8. Once the meatballs are done, put them into the sauce and let it simmer, covered for as long as you want (...mine went for almost an hour but that's just because we eat ridiculously late =P)
We ate ours over penne again (when in the world am I going to get me some legit SPAGHETTI and meatballs?! I'll tell you when...TONIGHT when I eat the leftovers!!) and it was delicious. This was a lot simpler (read weekday friendly) than the previous attempt (all the dried ingredients eliminated the need to saute anything before adding it to the meatball mixture which was the main thing that simplified this endeavor) and I'd say the meatballs were just as good this time around and less fatty since there was no pork. The meatballs didn't dry out as I was afraid they would, but it probably helped that I used 80-20 beef this time instead of my usual 90-10 (I accidentally bought 80-20 last time...so sad...mostly because I buy meat in bulk so I got 7 lbs of it =P)

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