Spaghetti & Meatballs

One of my ALL TIME favorite things to eat in the whole world is spaghetti and meatballs. I have pretty much been obsessed since I was knee high and called it bascetti! My problem has been that my husband doesn’t like spaghetti at all…. probably because I made it for him one too many times back in our newly wed days when that’s pretty much the only thing I knew how to make. So when he was out of town the other week on work I decided my kiddos and I would have a spaghetti and meatball party without him.

Mostly it was a “party” because they got to take their shirts off at dinner time. (If you know my kids they can make a mess out of a peanut butter sandwich like you have never seen! So I was hardly going to trust them to eat a mountain of red sauced-spaghetti fully clothed! Trust me, bibs would NOT have cut it). They had so much fun making a mess with their spaghetti-sucking competitions. My poor deprived kids. I think I ate spaghetti at least once a week growing up (and maybe more as a newly wed), but they only get to have it when my husband goes out of town! Although I think if I made this recipe for my husband instead of the canned tomato sauce I used when we were first married, he might actually  like it enough to let us have spaghetti & meatball night on a regular occassion {P.S. note how I changed it to “night” instead of party… I don’t want to give my husband an excuse to eat half-naked at the dinner-table! It’s already no shave November… that’s bad enough!)

Here is the recipe: (adapted from Pioneerwoman)

{for the Meatballs}
3/4 pounds Ground Beef
3/4 pounds Ground Pork
3 cloves Garlic, Minced
3/4 cups Fine Bread Crumbs
2 whole Eggs
3/4 cups Freshly Grated Parmesan
1/4 cup Flat-leaf Parsley, Minced
1/4 teaspoon Salt
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
Splash Of Milk
1/2 cup Olive Oil
{for the Sauce}
1 whole Yellow Onion, Diced
3 cloves Garlic, Minced
1 whole (28-ounce) Can Whole Tomatoes
1 whole 28 Ounce Can Crushed Tomatoes
1/2 cup White Or Red Wine (optional)
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon Sugar
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
1/4 cup Flat-leaf Parsley, Minced
8 whole Fresh Basil Leaves, Chiffonade (optional)
2 pounds Spaghetti, Cooked To Al Dente

To make the meatballs, combine meat, garlic, breadcrumbs, Parmesan, eggs, salt, pepper, parsley, and a splash of milk in a mixing bowl. Mix together well with hands.

Roll into 25 1 1/2-inch balls and place on a cookie sheet. Place cookie sheet into the freezer for 5 to 10 minutes to let them firm up.

To brown the meatballs, heat olive oil in a heavy pot or large skillet over medium-high heat. Add meatballs 8 at a time, turning to brown. Remove and drain on a paper towel after each batch. Set meatballs aside.

In the same pot, add the onions and garlic and cook for a few minutes, or until translucent. Pour in whole tomatoes, crushed tomatoes, and wine, if using. Add salt, pepper, sugar, and parsley. Stir to combine and cook over medium heat for 20 minutes.

Add meatballs to pot and stir in gently. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes, stirring very gently a couple of times during the simmer.

Just before serving, stir in basil if using.

Serve over cooked spaghetti. Sprinkle with extra Parmesan.

I topped my kiddos spaghetti with a huge mound of cheddar cheese just how I liked it when I was a kid (it’s kind of magic that whenever I add cheese to anything, they eat it up!) Speaking of magic… I can’t believe I downed two huge bowls of spaghetti. Everything else I eat a regular-sozed portion of, but when it comes to spaghetti, I can eat a LOT of it… I don’t even know how I do it, but it’s probably because I just love it THAT much! Maybe I shouldn’t make this on a regular occasion after-all….

I hope you love this recipe as much as we do!! It’s a good one!

Love, Sarah