We all need to know how to make a delicious bowl of Spaghetti & Meatballs. I mean whether it's a busy week at work, or something quick to whip up for a Sunday lunch, it's super easy and absolutely delicious. I am not an always a fan of tomato pasta sauce, but I could eat a big bowl of this tomatoey goodness.
To me, the only variation that takes this dish to another level is tossing the pasta with some truffle oil. The truffle oil I use is actually a mix of olive oil and truffle essence, therefore it really isn't that expensive. It definitely gives you the option to take a simple dish and make it something worth of a dinner party meal.
Meatballs Minced/ground Beef- 2.5kg 4-5 finely chopped Garlic cloves 1 tbsp Chilli flakes 1 medium Onion finely chopped 2 sprigs of Thyme 2 small Eggs (or 1 large) 1.5 cups of Breadcrumbs 1 tbsp Salt 1 tsp Black Pepper 1/2 tbsp Olive Oil 1 tsp Brown Sugar
Tomato Sauce 6lb can of Tomatoes (If you have fresh tomatoes, you can opt for those) Bunch of Basil 1 tsp Salt 1 tsp Pepper 1 tsp Brown Sugar 1 medium Onion chopped 3-4 cloves of plump Garlic (I leave mine whole, but you can chop yours) 1 long Bay Leaf or 2 short pieces 1/4 tsp Cinnamon powder 2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil Your choice and amount of pasta
STEPS First start with the meatballs. Turn pan to about medium heat and heat oil. Once the oil is heated, add garlic and thyme. After 30 seconds, add in onions and 1 tbsp of the chili flakes and fry. Once the onions start to brown, add in a tsp of salt and 1/2 tsp of pepper. This will release all the water from the onions and that is exactly what you want. Once the onions have changed color and sweat, add in brown sugar and caramelize for about 2-3 minutes. Set aside and let it cool.
Once onions are cooled, add the meat, bread crumbs and left over salt, pepper, and chili flakes. Mix well till fully incorporated. At this point add in one egg and mix thoroughly. If the mixture feels dry then add in the other egg and mix through. Alternatively, if the mixture feels too wet, then add some more bread crumbs till you get a good balance. You want to make sure that when you make a ball out of the meat, that its sticks together. You could try just frying one meatball first to check if you aren't sure. Once you are ready, make all the balls and set them in a cool place.
In a big pot, heat olive oil to about medium-low heat. Add in the garlic and onions and fry till they get some nice caramelization. At this point, you can add the bay leaf, half of the basil and cinnamon to let those infuse into the onions. Once the onions show some good color, add in tomatoes, salt, pepper, and sugar. Stir the pot well so all the flavors incorporate. Now you fill up half of the tomato can with water, pour into the pot and turn the heat down. At this point, you can put a lid on the pot and start frying your meatballs. I would heat up about 3 tbsp of olive oil in a non-stick pan on medium-low heat. Once the oil is heated up, fry the meatballs for at least 10-15 minutes. We want to keep the heat on medium-low in order to make sure that the meat cooks on the inside and doesn't burn on the outside. While the meat is frying, make sure to keep stirring and tasting your sauce, and adjust the flavors accordingly.
Once your sauce has developed some nice flavors, add in some fresh basil and serve with meatballs and your choice of pasta!