Meatballs and sauce, accompanied by either pasta or a crusty loaf of bread, is a terrific Sunday night supper - with leftovers to enjoy Monday. Make the sauce first, then spread a bit of it on the bottom of the pan in which you bake the meatballs.
Essential tip on this recipe: For a significantly better meatball, ask the butcher to grind a mix for you.
Chipolte Spiced Tomato Sauce
Adapted from The Food You Crave by Ellie Krieger
Equipment: Immersion blender, such as the Cuisinart CSB-76 Smart Stick Hand Blender
1 Tbs. olive oil
1 medium white onion, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, minced
3 Tbs. tomato paste
1 28-ounce can tomatoes
1/2 tsp. finely chopped chipotle chile in adobo sauce.
2 tsps. dried oregano
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1 scant tsp. salt
A few pinches of dried basil
Heat olive oil in a large saucepan. I use my 8-quart stock pan. You'll be using a stick blender at the end of cooking, so use a larger pan for ease and safety.
Saute the onion in the oil until translucent (4 minutes). Add the garlic and cook for an additional minute. Minced garlic cooks quickly. Don't burn it.
Add to the saucepan: tomato paste, can of tomatoes with juice, chipotle chile, oregano, and rosemary. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer about 15 minutes, until the sauce has thickened a bit.
Using stick blender, blend until reaching the desired consistency.
Adapted from BlogChef.net
Equipment: Digital meat thermometer. Something like this Taylor 9842 Commercial Waterproof Digital Thermometer
1 pound lean ground beef
1 pound ground pork
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 large egg, slightly beaten
1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs
3 Tbs. minced garlic
2 tsp. salt
3 tsp. of black pepper
2/3 cup of milk
2 tsp.dried oregano
Combine all ingredients. Form 2-inch meatballs. Spoon some sauce over each meatball. Bake at 350 until meatballs reach an internal temperature of 160 degrees. This could take 25 to 35 minutes depending on your oven. Use the thermometer. After 25 minutes have passed, remove one meatball from the oven and check the temp. If not done, give it another 5-10 minutes and check again. Patience!
Serve meatballs and sauce over pasta or with crusty bread.