Italian pork meatballs in tomato sauce

Italian meatballs
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These tasty meatballs in a rich tomato sauce need nothing more than a helping of spaghetti and some freshly grated parmesan.

As the meatballs are quite small the onion does need to be finely chopped so that they hold together well when cooking.
For a smoother meat mixture you can use a food processor. Blend the onion and breadcrumbs together first before adding the remaining ingredients.
You can also blend the sauce which will give you more depth of flavour.

Any left overs make a great filling for panzarotti’s (Italian deep fried pasties) or meatball and cheese subs.

Serves 3-4


450 g minced pork
½ large onion, very finely chopped
50 g fresh breadcrumbs
1 medium egg yolk
40 g freshly grated parmesan
2 tablespoons olive oil
tomato sauce:
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
½ large onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
400 g tin chopped tomatoes
1 tablespoon sundried tomato paste or 2 sundried tomatoes in oil, drained and finely chopped
1 tablespoon dried mixed herbs
150 ml red wine
Salt and pepper


To make the meatballs, place the pork, onion, breadcrumbs, egg yolk and parmesan in a bowl. Season well with salt and pepper and using you hands, mix everything together until well combined.

Divide the mixture into 20 balls. Place on a baking sheet, cover with clingfilm and chill for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile make the sauce.

Heat half the olive oil in a medium saucepan and gently cook the onion until softened but not browned.

Add the remaining ingredients, bring to the boil, cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes. Check the seasoning and set aside to cool while you fry the meatballs.

In a large, deep frying pan, heat the remaining olive oil over a moderate heat. Add the meatballs and brown on all sides. Reduce the heat to low and continue to fry for 8-10 minutes until cooked through.

Add the sauce to the pan and turn the meatballs to coat. Cook for a few more minutes everything is nice and hot. The sauce should be thick enough to coat the meatballs, If it is too thin, raise the heat slightly to reduce the liquid. If it is too thick add a splash of boiling water.

Serve immediately.

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