Ima Garten’s Real Meatballs and Spaghetti

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Taylor Swift has been very much in the news lately, and I saw an article stating that her favorite version of spaghetti and meatballs was developed by Ima Garten.  I made it and found it to be easy, rather basic, and quite tasty.  (The meatballs have more breadcrumbs than I usually use, but they are good.)  This will take 2 hours and will serve about 6 people.  I used 2 pounds of meatloaf mix.

For the meatballs

1 lb. ground beef )

½ lb. ground veal ) or 2 lbs. meatloaf mix substituting for the 3 meats

½ lb. ground pork )

1 cup finely cut fresh bread crumbs (from 3-4 slices of bread with the crusts removed)

¼ cup seasoned dried bread crumbs

2 Tbs. chopped fresh Italian parsley

½ cup freshly grated Parmesan

2 tsp. kosher salt

½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

¼ tsp. freshly grated nutmeg

1 large egg, beaten

¾ cup warm water

Olive oil

Vegetable oil

For the sauce

1 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil

1 cup chopped onion (about 1 onion)

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

½ cup dry red wine

28 oz. can crushed tomatoes

1 Tbs. chopped fresh Italian parsley

1-1/2 tsp. kosher salt

½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

In a large bowl, mix together all the meatball ingredients except the meat.  Add the meat and mix until the ingredients are evenly distributed.  Divide into 16 portions and roll each portion in your hands to form a ball.

Put in a large skillet equal amounts of olive and vegetable oil sufficient to cover the bottom by ¼ inch.  Heat the oil over medium heat.  When hot, carefully add half of the meatballs and brown them on both sides, about 10 minutes.  Using a slotted spoon, remove the first batch to a plate covered with paper towels.  Repeat with the second batch.

Pour out the oil from the skillet but do not wipe it out.   Start making the sauce by adding the olive oil to the pan.  Add the onion and cook over medium heat, scraping the bottom, until translucent.  Add the garlic and cook for another minute.  Add the wine and cook until the liquid has almost disappeared.  Add the tomatoes, parsley, salt and pepper.  Return the meatballs to the pot, cover and cook over low heat for 25-30 minutes, until the meatballs are cooked through.  Serve with spaghetti and more grated Parmesan.


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