Thursday, March 25, 2010

Spaghetti and Meatballs

So I fell off the wagon today just a little.  Or more than a little.  It was inevitable and I blame this book.

It's supposed to be about the author's year long spiritual journey, but so far to me it's just pure food porn!  Fortunately I'm up to the part where she just left Italy so hopefully it will ease up a bit.  I'm finding it a pretty good read, considering it's not about angsty teenage vampires or werewolves.

Which brings us to today's dinner....Spaghetti and Meatballs.

I've made spaghetti with meat sauce at least a million times, but never with meatballs.  Since I was off the wagon, I figured I might as well do it right.

This is a combination of Ina Garten's and Rachael Ray's Recipes.  
It's Ina's sauce, and Rachael's meatballs.  I would have liked to have gone Barefoot Contessa all the way, but Rachael's recipe let me use stuff I already had on hand.  (no fresh ground veal in the house, wouldn't ya know it!)

Rachael has you bake the meatballs rather than frying, which I suppose is a good thing...

Then they finish cooking by simmering in the sauce for about 25 minutes.  

My assessment is they're pretty good meatballs, but I'm not feeling any new spiritual awakening because of them.  

Here are the 2 recipes for you.

1 1/4 pounds ground sirloin (I just used extra lean ground beef)
2 tsp worcestershire sauce
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
2 cloves garlic, chopped
salt and pepper

Mix all ingredients together, roll into 1 1/2 inch balls, place on a cookie sheet. Bake at 425 for 10 minutes.

  • 1 tablespoon good olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion (1 onion)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup good red wine, such as Chianti
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes, or plum tomatoes in puree, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
For the sauce, heat the olive oil in the same pan. Add the onion and saute over medium heat until translucent, 5 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add the wine and cook on high heat, scraping up all the brown bits in the pan, until almost all the liquid evaporates, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, parsley, salt, and pepper.
Return the meatballs to the sauce, cover, and simmer on the lowest heat for 25 to 30 minutes, until the meatballs are cooked through. 
Serve it atop your favorite pasta and enjoy!

Wish me luck getting back on the straight and narrow tomorrow.


Sarah Naveen said...

I love gilberts EPL :) some how came across it while i was browsing through Barnes and nobles(where i spend most of my time, of the fact that i can read new books without paying ..hehheeh)
This spaghetti and meatballs looks super yummy!!

Me, Myself and Pie said...

the dish looks great. A classic I'll never get sick of! And *good luck*!! ;-)

sanjeet said...

I've done something similar and I liked it.
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The Japanese Redneck said...

My stomach growled at the sight of the picture!

Katrina said...

I've made spaghetti with a meat sauce a million times, too, but only meatballs a few times. My boys were just complaining last time I made spaghetti that I never make meatballs. I'll have to give it a go sometime. Yours looks good!

Carrie said...

Oh my goodness, I just got this book from the library yesterday!! I can't wait to get started! I'm sure I'll be craving Italian in no time... and when I do I'll have your recipe ,-)

I'm in the same boat, I needed a new book to get my mind off Twilight (I've read the series 4 times... I'm crazy).

Cinnamon-Girl said...

I get cravings for Spaghetti and Meatballs too - these look pretty yummy! My Mom is reading this now - she's going to pass it on. Can't wait.

Mara... said...

It looks great! My DH would love those meatballs. And good luck get back on the wagon!!!

Mimi said...

Italian comfort food! Keep reading If I recall she talks about food less once she leaves Italy.
Good luck getting back on the wagon.

Joie de vivre said...

Thanks for coming by Julie! Have a great weekend.

Ingrid said...

I'm thinking that's not such an unhealthy meal. It could have been much worse.

Leslie said...

Whhhaaaa? Are you cheating on Edward and or Jacob with this silly little book. SHAME ON YOU!!!!! lol

Natashya KitchenPuppies said...

Mmm, great comfort food! I loved the book too, just found out they were making a movie out of it. She does go on to other things besides eating after Italy. :) I wonder if they got Julia Roberts fattened up for that part? Somehow I doubt it. ;-)

Krista said...

I have wanted to read that book. And I still haven't gotten around to it. I did, however, somehow find the time to read that other series that you write of. I bet EPL was a nice change of pace!

The spaghetti and meatballs look wonderful. Spaghetti and meatballs is a go-to meal around here and this recipe looks delicious!

teresa said...

mmm, nothing beats a good spaghetti and meatball dish. this looks awesome!

Katy ~ said...

I like spaghetti and meatballs a whole lot more than I enjoyed the book, grins.

grace said...

believe it or not, i've never had spaghetti and meatballs. yes, i've had spaghetti, and yes, i've had meatballs, but never together. i'm not really sure why--your plate of food looks AWESOME!

Kim said...

I just found out that they are making a movie out of Eat, Pray, Love. The book sounds like a great read.
Your spaghetti and meatballs sound delicious. Just the meal that I would crave if I was going to fall off the wagon. Of course falling off the wagon would mean that I would be on the wagon to begin with. Maybe one of these days.

Michelle said...

It's okay to treat yourself once in a while so don't feel badly about "falling off the wagon". Everyone deserves a treat once in a while!

Gorgeous dish!

Chef Aimee said...

I cannot resist a good meatball...or five...on top of spaghetti! :) This looks delicious!

tigerfish said...

The recipe has tapped the essence of both Ina and Racheal, so the completed dish must be doubly delicious :D

Bridgett said...

Perfectly delicious comfort food! I would fall off the wagon for this as well. Best of luck getting back on!

Joanne said...

Nothing wrong with some spaghetti and meatballs! Everything in moderation right?

This looks like quite the comfort dish.

~~louise~~ said...

I've made spaghetti and meat balls tons of times and I just can't get use to baking the meat balls in the oven. I still fry mine. The meat these days has so little fat I figure what harm can it do and it sure seems to bring out the flavor more than baked. I was surprised not to see parsley in the meatball recipe too.

I saw this book at the bookstore the other day. I wish I could squeeze in a bit of time to sit down and read it. Perhaps, I'll wait for the movie:)

Thanks for sharing...Good luck getting back on the "straight and narrow."

The Blonde Duck said...

Spaghetti and Meatballs are a necessary part of any diet, even dieting.

Mary said...

I suspect meatballs and spaghetti is the greatest of American comfort foods. Yours look wonderful. I'm sure your back on the straight and narrow by now. I rootin' for you.

From the Kitchen said...

It's good to "fall off the wagon" occasionally! I've made Ina's meatballs substituting more ground beef for the veal and they were delicious. I wonder if baking them makes them dryer. Have never tried that.


mama of 4 said...

Stopping by from SITS!
Yum!The spaghetti and meatballs look awesome! We had lasagna tonight yummmmm. :) The book looks interesting, I will have to look into it... I like food porn :)

Deborah said...

I really want to read that book. The spaghetti looks amazing!

À LA GRAHAM said...

I loved that of my favorites and I love you spaghetti and meatballs...looks so good. I always think it is a hard dish to photograph and make it look appetizing but you did it!

Monica H said...

Ooh I loved this book. It was so good and it made me hungry too. All i wanted after reading was gelato :-)

I'm happy about your lime tree too. How exciting- I want one too!