Spicy Pork Meatballs

Spicy Pork Meatballs

 

Meatballs are always a favourite and these spicy pork meatballs are cooked in a chilli tomato sauce.

 

4 servings
  • Preparation time: about 30 minutes
  • Standing time: 30 minutes
  • Cooking time: 50–55 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 450 g 1 lb minced/ground pork
  • 85 g 3 oz fresh white breadcrumbs (1¾ cups)
  • 1 egg medium (U.K.)/large (N.A.), beaten
  • 1 lemon zest only
  • 1 small onion finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic crushed
  • 1 tbsp fresh sage chopped
  • 2 pinches crushed dried chillies
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 1 x 400g tin or ½ × 796 ml can chopped/diced tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée/paste
  • 1 tsp chicken bouillon or 1 × organic stock cube, mixed in 300ml (10 fl oz) (⅔ cup) boiling water
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 200 g 7 oz spaghetti
  • ½ a small Savoy cabbage finely shredded (or other green leafed vegetable finely shredded*).

  • *Savoy cabbage in Canada can be very pale and so I prefer to use something like kale. The dark green colour works well with the spaghetti although it does sound an unusual combination.

  • You will also need a large lidded frying pan/skillet.


  • Method
  • In a large bowl mix together the pork, breadcrumbs, beaten egg, lemon zest, finely chopped onion, half the garlic and half the sage, a pinch of the crushed chillies, and plenty of seasoning. Once everything is well mixed in, shape into 30 meatballs. Then refrigerate for 30 minutes to firm up.

  • Heat half the oil in the frying pan/skillet and add the meatballs. Brown over a medium heat, shaking the pan occasionally to brown all sides. This may need to be done in two batches. Remove and set aside.

  • Now add the remaining oil to the pan, reduce the heat, and add the chopped onions. Cook gently for 5 minutes until they have softened. Then add the remaining garlic and sage and cook for a further minute. Stir in the tomatoes, tomato purée/paste, stock, sugar, a pinch of crushed chillies, and season. Bring to the boil, then turn down to a simmer for 5–10 minutes until the sauce has reduced a little.

  • Return the meatballs to the pan, then gently simmer, covered, for 30 minutes, turning them halfway through.

  • Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti in plenty of salted, boiling water, adding the cabbage or other green vegetable for the last 4 minutes of cooking. Drain.

  • Serve the spaghetti alongside the meatballs and sauce.
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Updated: May 8, 2018

Angie’s Lasagne

Angie's Lasagna

 

This is a lasagne recipe that I stumbled across many years ago and that has always been a great family favourite. The dish has three layers of pasta, a meaty tomato sauce, and mozzarella cheese, topped with Parmesan.

 

8 servings
  • Preparation time: 30 minutes
  • Cooking time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Standing time: 10 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 9 lasagne sheets
  • 450 g 1 lb mince/ground beef
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 1 garlic clove crushed
  • 2 x 400g tins or 1 x 796ml can Italian chopped/diced tomatoes
  • 156 ml 5½ fl oz tin tomato paste (⅔ cup)
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • salt and freshly milled black pepper
  • 450 g 1 lb mozzarella cheese, grated/shredded* (4 cups)
  • 28 g 1 oz Parmesan cheese, finely grated/shredded (¼ cup)

  • For this recipe you will need a deep sided frying pan/skillet or sauté pan.
  • Also a 32.5 x 22.5 x 5 cm 13 x 9 x 2 inch ovenproof dish.

  • *In the UK the prepackaged grated mozzarella cheese contains only cheese and anti-caking ingredients. In Canada it has more additives, so I buy the block mozzarella and grate it myself. Just pop it in the freezer for ten minutes before grating to firm it up.

  • To serve
  • A Caesar salad can be served as an accompaniment.


  • Method
  • Brown the meat in the frying pan/skillet over a medium heat, about 5 minutes.

  • Reduce the heat, add the onion and garlic, and cook for a further 5 minutes.

  • Stir in the tomatoes, tomato paste, oregano, ⅔ cup water, and seasoning. Simmer for 20 minutes.

  • Meanwhile preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) (gas 4)

  • Many brands of lasagne pasta require no pre-cooking but I have found they benefit from cooking for a short time anyway. A baked lasagne using uncooked pasta isn’t as moist.

  • So bring a large pan of water to the boil and add a glug of olive oil. Drop 5 lasagne sheets into the water one at a time (crossing each one over the other) and boil for 4 minutes. (They need to be cooked in two batches or they will stick together while cooking.) Remove the sheets with a pair of tongs and lay them separately on a clean tea-towel. Repeat with the remaining four sheets.

  • To layer up the lasagne. First, spread a thin layer of the meat sauce in the bottom of the lasagne pan. Then layer 3 lasagne sheets, a third of the remaining meat sauce, and a third of the mozzarella cheese on top. Repeat layering the pasta, meat sauce, and cheese twice more. Finally sprinkle the Parmesan over the top.

  • Bake, covered with foil, in the oven for 30 minutes.

  • Remove the foil and cook for a further 10 minutes.

  • Let it stand for 10 minutes before serving into portions.
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Updated: May 3, 2018