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Mama Mia! Meatballs

Meatballs. Sometimes I feel like one. But being in the kitchen revives my spirit and you can't think about your waistline while you're taking in all the flavors of this dish. I had to stop speaking because this meatball was just that delectable. All my concentration and senses focused on that perfect bite. I'm hoping you get to experience the same love of this recipe!

Baked Meatballs with Tomato Sauce and Mozzarella

By Mimi Thorrison


Ingredients:

TOMATO SAUCE

  • 1/3 cup of EVOO

  • 1 medium red onion, diced

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • 1/4 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes (I did more)

  • 1 1/2 cups of chopped tomatoes (I used 2 large tomatoes)

  • 1/2 cup red wine

  • 1 tablespoon of tomato paste

  • 1 teaspoon of dried oregano

  • Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

MEATBALLS

  • 1/2 pound ground beef

  • 1/2 pound ground pork

  • 1 small white onion, freshly chopped

  • 1 cup fresh bread crumbs

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 2 tablespoons of heavy cream

  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

  • Parsley

  • 2/3 cup finely grated parmesan cheese

  • Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • All-purpose flour, for dredging

  • 1/4 cup olive oil

ASSEMBLY

  • 9 oz Mozzarella cheese, thickly sliced

  • 1 cup parmesan cheese

  • EVOO for drizzling

  • Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish


RECIPE:

  1. Make the tomato sauce: In a large Dutch oven or otherwise flameproof casserole pan, heat the olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the diced red onion and cook until it's translucent. Add the minced garlic and pepper flakes and cook for about 2 more minutes. Stir in the chopped tomatoes, 1/2 cup of red wine, 1 tablespoon of tomato paste, and the dried oregano.

  2. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and cook for 30 minutes or more.

  3. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

  4. Make the meatballs: Crumble the ground beef and pork into a large bowl. Add the onion, bread crumbs, garlic, oregano, cream, egg, parsley, and parmesan and mix to combine throughout. Season it with salt and pepper.

  5. Pull off chunks of the mixture and roll into about 1 1/2 inch balls.

  6. In a large skillet, heat the 1/4 cup of olive oil over medium-high heat.

  7. Lightly dredge the meatballs in the all-purpose flour.

  8. Place them in the heated skillet, without overcrowding, and brown all sides of the meatballs. Work in batches if needed.

  9. Set the meatballs aside on a plate as you finish browning them.

  10. To assemble: Transfer the meatballs to the simmering tomato sauce and top with the mozzarella slices. Sprinkle the Parmesan all over. Drizzle with olive oil and transfer to the oven.

  11. Bake until bubbling and golden brown, about 45 minutes. Serve hot, sprinkled with parsley.


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