Uncle Mario’s Meatballs

Ok the guy wasn’t really my uncle but he was my Mother’s boyfriend for a long time. He was also an excellent cook and he passed down the recipe for light meatballs to me about ten years ago. You will need:

A full loaf of cheap bread for the bread crumbs.

Six Eggs

A kg of minced beef or pork. Even lamb can be used.

Three tins of tomatoes

A small amount of flour

Parmesan cheese

Good quality Spaghetti

A pinch of fresh Oregano

Freshly grated parmesan cheese

Method

First you need to lightly toast your bread on both sides

Toast the bread lightly
Toast the bread lightly

Then use your hands to break it up into small pieces and break down into bread crumbs in a blender

Break the toast down into small pieces
Break the toast down into small pieces
Break the bread into crumbs using a blender
Break the bread into crumbs using a blender

Then turn your over on at about 180 degrees. Then tip all your bread crumbs into a baking tin and place in the oven. Occasionally check they are not burning and shane the tray carefully to bring the crumbs at the bottom to the top. In about fifteen minutes they should be nice and brown.

Nice brown dry bread crumbs will keep for weeks in an airtight jar.
Nice brown dry bread crumbs will keep for weeks in an airtight jar.

Next you take a nice big mixing bowl. Unpack your mincemeat and add it to the bowl. Next you remove the egg white from the egg by breaking them very gently and pouring the egg white into a container. You do not need the yolk. When you have six egg whites add them to the mixing bowl. Add three good handfuls of breadcrumbs. Add a pinch of salt, a pinch of pepper, a good table spoon of Oregano and a tablespoon of parmesan cheese. Before you get your hands dirty, half fill a bowl with flour and place a frying pan with a little oil on the stove, alow it to heat gently. Have a plate ready for the meatballs when they are formed.

A good size mixing bowl and the mince, egg, breadcrumbs and seasoning
A good size mixing bowl and the mince, egg, breadcrumbs and seasoning

Befor the next bit you first need to roll up your sleeves and wash your hands thoroughly, with soap, and under the nails. Now the bit you have all been looking forward to! Mix the ingredients of the bowl together thoroughly making sure the egg and the breadcrumbs mix into the mince. When you have one huge big ball of mince you roll it into smaller, golf or tennis ball size meatballs (depending on your appetite) and place them on the plate. Then place them in the bowl of flour, one at a time until they are covered and place them back on the plate.

One big meatball needs to be rolled down into smaller ones and covered in flour
One big meatball needs to be rolled down into smaller ones and covered in flour

Now wash your hands again, getting all the ingrediants off, and from under your nails, and dry them. You may want to turn the ventalation on or open a window as the next bit can get a bit smoky. Next fry the meatballs in the shallow oil one at a time and place back on the plate.

Coat the meatballs in flour
Coat the meatballs in flour
SHallow fry the meatballs one at a time till they go brown
Shallow fry the meatballs one at a time till they go brown
The finished articles
The finished articles

And that is your meatballs themselves done. If you want to leave some to cool and freeze for another day feel free. They often feed you for two or three days! Anyway onwards and upwards, tomato sauce next.

Take a nice thick bottomed steel sauce pot that is oven resistant. Add three tins of chopped tomatoes, and add a cup and a half of cold water. Gently bring to simmer on the stove and add worstershire sauce, salt, sugar and a drop of tabasco. How much of each depends how you like it so I recommend that you take a teaspoon and keep sampling it until you have the taste just how you want it. If you like you can add salsa sauce or any ‘secret’ ingredient you prefer. Switch your oven on at 180 degrees. Carefully place two meatballs per person into the sauce and spoon the tomato sauce over the meatballs. Then when the oven is hot place the whole pan into the oven and leave it to bake for 30 minutes, checking occasionally and you may carefully stir the tomatoes and spoon them over the meatballs to prevent dryness.

Allow the sauce to simmer and adjust the taste to how you like it
Allow the sauce to simmer and adjust the taste to how you like it
Bake the meatballs in the sauce for 30-40 minutes

Bake the meatballs in the sauce for 30-40 minutes

Finally boil a pan of water and add enough spaghetti for two people. When it is al dente, or as soft and you prefer, drain it and add to a dish. Using a thick towel or oven gloves remove the meatball pan from the oven. Allow them to stand for a minute. Take a ladle and spoon the meatballs over the spaghetti. Finally drizzle the tomato sauce over the meatballs. You may add a little Parmesan or Oregano for garnish.

Finally serve and enjoy.

Buono Appitito (As Mario would say)

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