Thursday, 17 July 2008


When I was a child I hated meatballs, Yuk, just the thought of what I was given brings back the taste and smell of those horrible tinned things, I am sitting here wrinkling my nose at the thought!
I was never given tinned food very often thankfully, as my Mum is a great cook and baker.
Years ago a good friend of mine would come for tea and we took it in turns to cook, he was an artist with a keen interest in cooking and had just been assisting Nick Nairn on his first or second tv show doing the prep. He made me spaghetti and meatballs, wow, I realised that I did not hate meatballs after all.
I never had them much after that as I thought it was a lot of guddling about to make them, but over the years I have either got it down to a fine art or I am just a more confident cook.
I made some yesterday and have learned through time that it is always best to make double the amount that I need. There was a whole new world of things to do with meatballs ahead of me!

I don't follow a recipe as such, but have picked the things I liked from a range of good recipes.

Tomato Sauce

1 onion finely chopped and softened in olive oil, add 3 tins of chopped tomatoes,( I fill each tin to a 1/4 with water and swirl to clean out all the juice) a generous squirt of tomato puree, some herbs - Italian blend, or a mix that you like, garlic powder, salt, pepper, sugar and once the sauce and meatballs are cooked a dash of balsamic vinegar. This must be cooked for at least an hour, bubbling away at the back of the cooker. If you have a parmesan rind lurking in your fridge, chuck that in too as it adds a wonderful flavour to the sauce - don't forget to take it out before serving.


In a bowl I put some garlic powder, dried oregano, thyme, basil and parsley. Salt, pepper and parmesan. I used just minced beef this time, but sometimes I use half beef half pork. One recipe I used years ago - and lost, used a slice of bread soaked in milk in the meatball mix. Just squeeze out most of the milk before adding it to the meat and herbs and mix well with your hands.

Form into meatballs - I like wee ones just now, but go with whatever you like and brown them in batches in a heavy pan with olive oil. Add to the bubbling tomato sauce and leave for as long as you can resist.
They will taste even better the next day if you can leave them that long!

Today we will be having either subs or pizza with the leftovers.


Marie said...

Lovely looking recipe Angela. MY spaghetti and meatballs recipe is one that I got off a tin of tomato paste years ago. I have tinkered with it through the years and now have what I think it the perfect recipe, much like yours as well. I bet pizza with the leftovers would be fab!

Manggy said...

Angela, I ADORE spaghetti with meatballs! The milk in bread thing sounds like a Swedish touch :) The seasonings you used sound just about perfect.

Raquel said...

YUM! We love spagetti and meatballs, or sweet and sour meatballs or swedish meatballs or BBQ meatballs . . . the list goes on! Your sauce and meatballs sound delish!

Beth said...

Everyone in our house loves spaghetti and meatballs. Will bookmark this to make asap. This is my kind of comfort food.

Sue said...

My husband rarely cooks in our house but one of things he does do and does well is meatballs.
Your meatball recipe Angela, looks similar to his minus the bread in milk, he uses parmesan croutons.

Jan said...

Looks and sounds yummy, Angela.