Well I’m back on track with my cookbook challenge. For those of you new to this I am attempting to use some of my bazillion cookbooks (yes I have that many). I challenged myself to cook 2 new recipes from my cookbooks a week. Today I headed to my newest and most favorite (for now) The Pioneer Woman Cooks, Food from my Frontier. My daughter selected this recipe, as she is a avid pasta fan. Myself I am not so I used the meatballs and had a open faced sub, both versions were enjoyed by all.
As always I never seem to have all the ingredients needed so a few omissions and substitutions were made, I’m pretty sure Ree won’t mind. I also was running short on time so I didn’t cook the meatballs in the sauce as directed, I put them in the oven put my convect bake on and the heat up to get them done in a hurry, and then put them in the sauce. A busy mom has to cut corners sometimes On that note I totally cheated and used a jarred marinara sauce, not out of laziness, but again lack of ingredients, did not have the canned tomatoes…again I think it works either way. If you want her homemade sauce recipe just head over to her site www.thepioneerwoman.com!
6 thick slices of crusty bread – baked till dry and processed into crumbs. -OR- 1 used 1 1/2 aprox. bread crumbs(I used half reg and half Panko)
1 1/2 lbs ground meat – I used all beef, but she calls for 3/4 lb pork and 3/4 lb beef
3 cloves of minced garlic
2 eggs – beaten
1/4 cup minced flat leaf parsley ( only had dried so I put in a few tbs.)
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup milk
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup olive oil to fry them in.
Marinara or your favorite spaghetti sauce
2 lbs Rigatoni noodles- cooked al dente and drained
* In a large mixing bowl place the ground meat and all the ingredients up t the olive oil. Using clean hands to mix together until well combined.
* Use a scoop to get uniform amounts, form into balls and place on a sheet. Once all formed place in freezer for 10-15 minutes to firm up. (I didn’t leave them in long enough, so a few were less ball shaped and more pancaked shaped once cooked oops)
* In a heavy pot heat up the olive oil and cook the meatballs in batches of 8 – 10. You are just brwom=ning them so only about 2-3 mins total. Then remove from pot.
* This is where I put them in the oven at 400 degrees for about 15-20 mins to cook them through. You will have to judge time based on the size of your balls. If you are doing PW way you make your sauce in the pan(takes about 30 mins) then place the meatballs in the sauce and cook for 20 mins more. I didn’t have the time so I put mine in the sauce in the pan from the oven and cooked about 3-4 mins.
* While meatballs in oven I was cooking my pasta and garlic bread!
* Next assemble pasta and sauce and balls on a plate and enjoy!
Ease of Prep: 6.5 – this is the lowest so far I think, it was not hard, just alot of ingresients, and alot of steps. I think had I tried to make it on a weekend it would have seemed easier without the time crunch of a busy weeknight! Still will totally make it again.