This authentic Italian recipe was given to me by my cousin's wife, who is from Italy. It's so hearty and satisfying, everyone's eyes light up when I tell my family that we're having this for supper! —Etta Winter, Pavillion, New York
- 2 cans (28 ounces each) diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1 can (12 ounces) tomato paste
- 1-1/2 cups water, divided
- 3 tablespoons grated onion
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1-1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 bay leaf
- 1-1/4 teaspoons salt, divided
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic, divided
- 3/4 teaspoon pepper, divided
- 6 slices day-old bread, torn into pieces
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
- 1 pound ground beef
- Hot cooked spaghetti
- Additional Parmesan cheese, optional
- In a Dutch oven, combine the tomatoes, tomato paste, 1 cup water, onion, sugar, oregano, bay leaf and 1/2 teaspoon each of salt, garlic and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 1-1/4 hours.
- Meanwhile, soak bread in remaining water. Squeeze out excess moisture. In a large bowl, combine the bread, eggs, Parmesan cheese, parsley and remaining salt, garlic and pepper. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well. Shape into thirty-six 1-1/2-in. meatballs.
- Place meatballs on a rack in a shallow baking pan. Bake, uncovered, at 400° for 20 minutes or until no longer pink; drain. Transfer to spaghetti sauce. Simmer, uncovered, until heated through, stirring occasionally. Discard bay leaf. Serve with spaghetti; if desired, top with additional Parmesan. Yield: 6 servings.
Originally published as Italian Spaghetti and Meatballs in Country Ground Beef 1993, p70
Full-Bodied Red Wine
Enjoy this recipe with a full-bodied red wine such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot or Syrah.
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