Italian Meat & Fish Recipes Italian Pasta Recipes

ORECCHIETTE PASTA WITH FRIED MEATBALLS IN SAUCE

Meatballs with sauce are a delicacy!

Bites of ground meat, embellished with cheese and bread are fried in plenty of oil until golden brown and then cooked for a long time in tomato sauce that will become sublime, full-bodied and flavorful.


It will also be perfect for dressing pasta.

 

 

SERVINGS:4

INGREDIENTS:

FOR THE MEATBALLS:

  • 3 cups of minced meat (veal, beef & pork)
  • 2 cups of stale bread
  • 1 cup of whole milk
  • 2/3 cup of Pecorino Romano cheese (grated)
  • 1/4 cup of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese (grated)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • parsley to taste
  • pepper to taste

 

For Frying and Breading:

  • stale bread (or homemade bread) to taste
  • breadcrumbs to taste
  • 4 cups of peanut oil

 

For the tomato sauce:

  • 1 shallot
  • 3 cups of tomato puree
  • 2 1/5 cups of peeled tomatoes
  • salt to taste
  • extra virgin olive oil to taste
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 cup of whole milk (optional)
  • 4 cups of orecchiette pasta
  • Pecorino romano cheese (grated) to taste

 

DIRECTIONS:

Let us cut the bread into cubes and place it inside a blender.

Let’s coarsely blend it and transfer it to a bowl.

Let’s combine a cup of milk and knead it with our hands so that the milk penetrates well inside the bread.

Let it rest for about 10 minutes.

We put the ground meat in a large bowl and also add the bread moistened with milk.

If it seems too wet, squeeze it out with your hands before combining it with the meat.

Mix it all together well.

We also add: a pinch of salt, an egg and mix thoroughly so that the egg is perfectly incorporated.

We add: the grated cheeses, chopped parsley, a grinding of pepper and a clove of chopped garlic.

Mix all the ingredients well with your hands and until smooth.

We can proceed to form the meatballs: we try to make them all the same size, neither too big nor too small.

We take a small portion of the dough and work it between the palms of our hands to form a ball.

Note: If you prefer, you can also not fry the meatballs!

Just don’t pass them through breadcrumbs and then cook them directly in tomato sauce for about 80 minutes!

We toss the meatballs in the breadcrumbs, turning them on all sides so they are evenly coated, and arrange them on a tray.

We proceed in this way for all the meatballs.

Once all the meatballs are prepared, we can proceed with the frying: put a large frying pan with plenty of peanut oil on the stove and wait for it to come up to temperature.

We fry the meatballs, a little at a time, so as not to lower the temperature of the oil and in plenty of boiling oil, turning them on both sides.

As soon as they are well browned and crispy (about 3 minutes will suffice) we can drain them and place them on a tray with paper towels so that they lose excess oil.

Once they are ready, let them cool and let us devote ourselves to preparing the tomato sauce: we finely chop a shallot (or a golden onion).

 

We will have to cut it into very small pieces so that it almost melts then in the oil.

In a large pan, preferably nonstick, we brown the shallot with a drop of oil.
When it starts to brown, we lower the flame, add a drop of water and let it stew slowly, over very low heat, until it becomes translucent and well wilted.

We then raise the flame and add the tomato puree and pulp, season with a pinch of salt and add about 2-3 cups of water.

Let it cook for a few minutes and until the sauce starts to sob.
We add the meatballs and gently mix them into the sauce so that they sink in completely.
Add two bay leaves and let them cook, on low heat, covered with a lid for about 60 minutes, turning occasionally.

Tip: About 15 minutes before we finish cooking the meatballs in sauce I also add a glass of milk, which will make the sauce even more full-bodied and flavorful, it is not mandatory, however.

Once the meatballs in sauce are ready, we can proceed with the preparation of the orecchiette pasta.

Let’s transfer the meatballs to another smaller pan, along with a few ladles of sauce, and keep them warm.

Let’s cook the orecchiette pasta in plenty of salted water.

Let’s drain them (about a minute before the recommended cooking time) and transfer them to the pan with the meatball sauce.

Let’s saute them, over high heat, turning them continuously for a few minutes, until they are perfectly blended with the sauce.

We then turn off the heat, also add a generous handful of grated pecorino cheese and mix everything well.

The orecchiette pasta with meatball sauce is also ready to be served, hot and steaming, followed then by the meatballs with sauce!

You will thus have a delicious first and second course.

 

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