Friday, February 20, 2009

Simple Italian Tomato Sauce with Meatballs

Finally, my exams are over and Ian and I have been reunited once again. I rushed over to his house after my exam and imagine what I saw.... Ian and his roommate, unshaven, in their pjs, watching Paris Hilton's "My New BFF". Yes, it's true. Both of them were sick this week and daytime TV reduced them to this. Although I'll admit it, my brain was fried from an intense exam, I too sat down with them and watched the horrendous atrocity. It was so bad. So, so bad.

If I hear one more person say 'frenemy' (friend and enemy) or 'ttyn' (talk to you never) I will start shooting at the TV.

Ok, now that that rant is out of the way, on to dinner. I had to get them out and shaven so we went to the grocery store and within a couple hours were eating home made Italian meatballs with penne and freshly grated parmigiano reggiano to top it off.

This is usually a fail safe method to good tomato sauce, and you can substitute sausages for meatballs, it works just as well. The key here is to buy the best canned whole tomatoes that you can find, like Pastene or any tomato grown and picked in Italy. The idea is that it is an Italian tomato that is picked at its prime and cooked only once. The diced tomatoes and tomato puree are cooked twice and lose a lot of their flavour. Also, putting the tomatoes through a ricer gives it the perfect texture and is a step that shouldn’t be forgotten.

Ok, I will tell you the secret to perfect meatballs. Mix in a couple ladlefuls of sauce when you are mashing the meatballs together, that way they will never be dry. I can't believe I just gave that away. Use it wisely. ttyn (just punch me now).

Simple Italian Tomato Sauce with Meatballs

2 cans whole tomatoes
1 large onion
3 cloves of garlic, minced
salt and pepper
1 tbsp Italian seasoning

300g lean ground pork
300g lean ground beef
1 clove of garlic, minced
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
salt, pepper, and Italian spice
1/2 cup tomato sauce
1 egg

Soften the garlic and onion in oil. Once softened, pass the tomatoes through a ricer into the pot. Add Italian spices and season with salt and pepper. Simmer on low for 1-1/2 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add all ingredients together and mix thoroughly with hands. Form into 1 inch balls and place on baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes, then add to the sauce. Make sure sauce simmers for minimum 45 minutes so that the meatballs become fully cooked.

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