Friday, July 12, 2013

Greg's Chunky Meatballs

meatballs in tomato basil marinara sauce
Meatballs in Roasted Tomato & Basil Marinara
If you enjoy the pungent flavor of onions and garlic, and also appreciate different textures in your food like I do, these unconventionally lumpy-bumpy and downright chunky meatballs will satisfy your senses and feed you well.

Unlike typical meatball recipes that call for cooking the meatballs in a sauce, Greg fries these meatballs in a little olive oil, turning to brown all sizes. That's what produces their "ugly-duckling" not-quite-spherical shape. The benefit of this cooking method, however, is that the browned meat develops a deeply savory flavor (foodies call that "umami") that beautifully complements the mellow sweetness of tomato sauces.

We served Greg's Chunky Meatballs in my Roasted Tomato & Basil Sauce, and didn't even miss the spaghetti or other pasta normally served with tomato sauce and meatballs.

1 lb ground beef
1/4 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
2 eggs
1 spring or green onion, including top, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
Olive oil

fried meatballs
Browning the chunky meatballs
Dump all ingredients except the oil into a large bowl and mix together well with your hands until thoroughly combined. Shape into meatballs about 2" in diameter (or smaller if you prefer - this larger size makes 9 or 10 meatballs).

Pour a little olive oil into a large skillet and heat over medium-high heat. When oil is hot, place meatballs in skillet, leaving space between them for easy turning. Fry the meatballs until browned and cooked through, turning carefully to brown on all sides. When the meatballs are done, remove from oil and drain on paper towels before serving with sauce. Makes 2 or 3 servings.

Zestfully yours,

PS:  If you want to spice up your meatballs with some peppery heat, simply add a little bit (up to 1/4 tsp) of your favorite ground dried chili pepper powder to the raw meat mixture. Another substitution you can make is to use an Italian seasoning blend instead of oregano.

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