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Meatballs…

November 5, 2012 Comments off

not just for on top of spaghetti.

I have been intrigued with meatballs for quite some time now. Meatballs. Beef meatballs. Pork meatballs. Veal meatballs. Lamb meatballs. Chicken Meatballs. You get the idea. I particularly like the flavors you get by combining different meats. There are cheeses to add. Veggies. Herbs. The possibilities are endless. I have had this meatball recipe printed out for a long time. I paused, because I was going to mention how long I have had it, but realized that I have no idea how long I have had it. You see, I am a recipe addict. That goes for recipes that are in cookbooks, magazines, and newspapers. Recipes from websites, be they mainstream or obscure blogs. Recipes that pop up in our “Inbox” every day. Recipes that I find through Twitter. Recipes that come in as tester recipes for Leite’s Culinaria. Recipes for food someone else made. Yes, I am an addict, with absolutely no interest in a 12-step plan to try and cure me of my addiction. I could make a new recipe everyday well into the next century, and I would still not get to make everything that I have my eye on. And every day more recipes come to my attention. I have a huge recipe file on the computer. I have huge piles of recipes that I am going to be putting into binders. I should mention that I have had these piles for quite a while now, and this is not the first time that I have said, “I am going to be putting them into binders”. Every time that I go through one of the piles I find recipes that make me pull them out and start a shopping list. This recipe did that for me. I actually found it in a Williams-Sonoma catalogue that came in the mail once upon a time. Roman-Style Meatballs with Gnocchi alla Romana. These meatballs are made with ground beef, ground pork, and prosciutto. They have fresh herbs, garlic, and grated Parmigiano-Reggiano. Fresh bread crumbs that were soaked in milk. The meats. We keep 1 lb. packages of our favorite ground beef in the freezer. I don’t like to buy ground pork. Instead, we buy large pieces of pork butt/shoulder and cut it into portions, vacuum seal them, and have them at the ready. We seal large packages for braised dishes. Think… pulled pork. porcetta. Tinga Poblana. We also seal 1 lb. portions which we grind ourselves whenever we need ground pork. The recipe says to chop the prosciutto, but we put sections of it into the grinder while grinding the pork. Shawn said that he could really taste the prosciutto in the meatballs. I was just wowed by how all of the flavors melded together. The tomato sauce could not be easier to make. Three ingredients if you don’t count the olive oil, salt and pepper. Six if you do. Use really good canned crushed tomatoes. With so few ingredients, the taste of the tomatoes really shines through. The recipe suggests that you serve this with Gnocchi alla Romana, which is a semolina gnocchi. I have had wonderful semolina gnocchi, but I wanted to serve the meatballs and sauce over soft, creamy polenta. It was a good choice. However, as I found out while playing around with the leftovers, my favorite way to eat these is in a bowl, with some of the tomato sauce. All you need is a spoon and a glass of red wine. For us it was a 2005 Core Elevation Sensation, Alta Mesa Vineyard from California’s Central Coast. 60% Mourvedre and 40% Grenache.
The meatball recipe is here. Enjoy!   http://www.williams-sonoma.com/recipe/roman-style-meatballs.html

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