I love it when my life manages to work out in such a way that I get to call this a Tuesday night dinner. Last week a few of us got together for an evening of cooking in which we made (possibly) thousands of meatballs, a vat full of pasta sauce and some marinated chickens that should be coming soon to a blog near you. A freezer full of that and a strangely lucid head the night before that inspired me to make the pasta dough before I went to bed and, Voila!, homemade spaghetti and meatballs on a school night. Super Mom Awards, here I come. The chicken meatball recipe comes from Gourmet Everyday (big surprise), which Katie also found on Smitten Kitchen. The sauce is a Jamie Oliver Food Revolution one found on Parenting.com which is full of veggies that your family will never know about, but, more importantly, it tastes lovely, especially over meatballs (though I would add a little more salt than he says – it brings out the tomatoey flavour more). And what meatballs! So that’s the recipe you are getting here; try them in a sauce, make them big and have them with a salad, make them little and serve them as an appetizer with a roasted grape tomato skewered to the top, do what you will, but try them for sure!
3 slices Italian bread, torn up without crusts
1/3 cup milk
3 oz pancetta or bacon, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped (we used the food processor for this and the garlic)
1 small garlic clove, finely chopped
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 large egg
1 lb ground chicken or turkey
3 Tbsp finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1. Soak bread in milk in a small bowl until softened, about 4 minutes, then squeeze bread to remove excess milk and place in a large mixing bowl.
2. Cook pancetta, onion, and garlic with salt and pepper in a large skillet over medium heat until onion is softened, about 6 minutes.
3. Add pancetta mixture, chicken/turkey, parsley, and a lightly beaten egg to the bread and stir to combine. Divide into meatballs; ours made about 16-18 per batch and were pretty good sized meatballs for having with pasta, but if you want these on their own, 12 meatballs would probably be about right.
4. Bake in 400 oven for 15-20 minutes (depending on size) or until just cooked through. Freeze for later, or serve immediately.