Friday, April 17, 2009

Pasta with Meatballs

Usually when I make meatballs I make a lot so I can freeze them raw. You can add them to sauce, pan-fry them, or bake them when they are frozen. They can top pizza, fill a sandwich, or make a great pasta sauce. They're so versatile! I don't have the perfect recipe yet: I've made Mark Bittman's and Kittencal's on Recipezaar and both are good. Once I find my ideal, I'll post it.

Anyway, we were in the mood for pasta last night, and I had frozen meatballs in the freezer. We were out of parmesan (!), so I added some mozzarella cheese to the sauce. We were also low on spaghetti, so I used Barilla Plus penne. The end result was thick, not very saucy - almost like baked pasta from a skillet. It was delicious!
Pasta with Meatballs
1 lb. meatballs (homemade or store-bought)
1 T. olive oil
1 large onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 T. red wine vinegar or 1/4 cup red wine
28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
1/4 cup basil or parsley, chopped
1 t. salt
1/2 t. pepper
1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese, grated
12 oz. pasta - penne, spaghetti, etc.
Cook pasta according to package instructions; drain.
Brown meatballs in olive oil in a large skillet. Once browned on each side, remove meatballs to a dish - they don't need to be cooked through. Saute the onion in the remaining oil for 8-10 minutes, until golden. Add garlic and saute for another minute. Add vinegar to pan and stir until it evaporates (if you like a sweeter sauce, add 1 t. sugar as well).
Pour in crushed tomatoes and bring to a boil. Turn down to a simmer, and return meatballs to pan. Simmer, covered, until meatballs are cooked through - probably 20-30 minutes. Before serving, stir in salt, pepper, basil, and mozzarella cheese.
Stir pasta into sauce, and serve with parmesan cheese - if you have any!

1 comment:

Alison... said...

I always look at this blog on an empty stomach - large mistake!

I have experimented with making meatballs too... I now make really good turkey meat balls and I put the meatballs into the microwave for 30 seconds to partially 'cook' them then I put them into the sauce. They came out really good!