I think I’ve mentioned that I grew up in a heavily Italian neighborhood, so although I’m not Italian myself, I enjoyed the benefits of wonderful Italian food growing up. Sauce is something people take very seriously, and even my non-Italian mom makes delicious sauce. This sauce though, all I can say is WOW. Completely delicious, and I honestly have thought about it several times since making it, which, for me, says a lot.
If my brother were visiting, I’d just pull out some sauce and it put it in its own pan to simmer before I added the meatballs, so it’s easily adapted to a vegetarian meal!
(Angel Hair) and Meatballs
Recipe slightly adapted from Mrs. D Loves to Eat, originally from Brown Eyed Baker
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 small sweet onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1, 28-oz., can tomato puree (I used diced as that’s what I had on hand, and since you blend it all at the end, it worked fine!)
- 1, 28-oz., can tomato sauce
- 2 1/2 tsp. dried parsley
- 1 tsp. dried basil
- 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
- 2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. black pepper
- 3 Tbsp. sugar
- Water from rinsing extra sauce and puree from inside of cans (about 1/2 to 2/3 of a cup)
- 3/4 cup. grated parmesan or romano cheese
To begin, heat the olive oil and saute the onion in a Dutch Oven (or large stockpot) over medium heat for about 2-3 minutes, then add the garlic for another 2-3 minutes until the onion is translucent. Add tomato sauce, tomato puree, parsley, basil, oregano, salt, pepper, cheese, water, and sugar. Once it’s all combined, bring to a boil then lower to a simmer and place the lid on the pot with a little bit of a crack to let some of the steam escape. Let simmer for at least 2 hours. (Adding the meatballs at the 1 hour mark to allow them plenty of time to cook through if not cooking them in the oven.)
Discard the bay leaf, and remove the meatballs to a bowl with a slotted spoon. Blend the sauce until smooth using an immersion blender, or if you don’t have one, blend no more than 2 cups of sauce at a time very carefully in a blender. Since it’s hot, I would take the pour hole insert out of the top and put a kitchen towel (it will get sauce on it so use an old one) over it to hold on to avoid burning your hand and blowing the top off! Return the meatballs to the sauce. Serve with grated parmesan, because there’s no better way than more cheese!
- 1 lb. ground beef
- 1 egg
- 1 1/2 tsp. dried parsley
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup bread crumbs, divided
- 2/3 cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
There are two ways to make the meatballs – either simmer in the sauce or cook in the oven. This time I cooked them in the sauce, although I would try the oven method as well as I think both ways would be/were delish!
In a medium bowl, combine 1/4 cup of bread crumbs with the milk and allow to soak for 10 minutes. Mix-in the remaining ingredients and shape into 1 – 1 1/2″ balls.
Oven Method: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake for 30 minutes and add to simmering sauce to finish cooking through or cook the entire way in the oven (40-45 minutes).
Stovetop Method: Allow to simmer in the sauce for 45-60 minutes or until cooked through.