Sunday, February 5, 2012

Anna Sultana's Tomato Sauce and Homemade Meatballs, Maltese Style

What is it with Carmela's recipes?
I'm thinking about her Sunday Gravy / Tomato Sauce.
Don't get me wrong.
Her recipes are good.

But, if you have to watch what you eat - or are on a budget - her recipes sure can give you and your wallet ajita.
Ma's recipes are a bit easier.
And healthier.
And cheaper.
Much better recipes for when you're paying off the holiday bills.

Like I said before, Ma wasn't working at Lily Tulip because she thought it was 
a fun thing to do.

Small notes: 
If you like your meatballs with a bit of a crispy surface, sear them under the broiler 
at high heat for a few minutes, stirring them to crisp all sides, before adding them 
to the sauce.
If you like a sauce with a meatier flavor, add the meat drippings to the sauce.

                        Tomato Sauce

Makes about 4 - 5 cups

The Sauce

Chop (if they're whole tomatoes)
One 28- to 35-ounce can Italian tomatoes

Heat in a large heavy pot over medium heat
 2 Tablespoons olive oil
 1 medium onion, minced
 1 garlic clove, minced
Fry a few minutes until golden.

Stir in
 1 small can tomato paste (optional)
 1 Cup water
 1 bay leaf
 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
 1/2 teaspoon pepper
 1/2 teaspoon salt
 1 Tablespoon sugar
  the canned tomatoes
Simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour. 
If the sauce becomes too thick, add a little more water.

While the sauce is simmering, make 
The Meatballs

Combine in a large bowl
 1 pound ground beef or a combination of beef and pork
 1/2 Cup plain bread crumbs
 1 large egg, beaten
 1 Tablespoon dried parsley
 1/2 teaspoon salt
 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
 1/8 teaspoon ground pepper
Mix together thoroughly.
Rinse your hands with cool water and lightly shape the mixture into 1-inch balls.

Heat in a large heavy skillet
 2 Tablespoons olive oil
Add the meatballs and brown them well on all sides.

After the sauce has simmered for an hour, 
add the meatballs and cook for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove the bay leaf.

Serve the sauce and meatballs with 
your favorite pasta, cooked and still hot.

Sprinkle with

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