Spaghetti & Meatballs and Garlic Bread


Serves: 6

Ingredients Spaghetti & Meatballs:
  • 1 pound ground meat (pork, beef, chicken, turkey, or a combo)

  • 1/2 cup panko-style breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 cup milk, any kind
  • 2 tablespoon finely chopped parsley, plus more to serve
  • 2 tablespoons finely grated parmesan or pecorino romano cheese, plus more to serve
  • 2 teaspoons coarse or kosher salt, divided
  • red pepper flakes and/or freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced, divided
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 28-ounce can of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 pound dried spaghetti
Procedure for Spaghetti & Meatballs:
  1. Place meat, crumbs, milk, parsley, cheese, 1 teaspoon salt, pepper, onion powder, eggs, and one-third of your minced garlic in a large bowl, and mash everything together with a fork or potato masher until evenly mixed. Using wet hands if needed, form mixture into 2-inch meatballs and arrange on prepared tray.

  2. In a deep sauté pan or wide saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the meatballs in a single layer and sear until brown all around. Add remaining two-thirds of garlic and a pinch or two of pepper flakes and let sizzle until garlic is golden, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add tomatoes (beware the spatter!) and season with remaining 1 teaspoon salt. Let mixture simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, although longer will do it no harm if your meatballs aren’t ready yet.
  3. Once water is boiling, cook spaghetti until one minute shy of tender. Set aside 1 cup of cooking water before draining pasta.
  4. When you’re ready to serve: Return your spaghetti to its empty cooking pot. Push meatballs aside and grab a few ladles of their cooking sauce and pour over spaghetti. Add half of reserved pasta water and cook spaghetti and sauce over high heat for one minute, tossing the whole time. Use additional pasta water as needed to loosen. Add the meatballs and their sauce on top. Garnish with additional grated cheese.
Ingredients for Garlic Bread:
  • 1 large (about 12 ounces) baguette
  • 8 tablespoons (115 grams or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into chunks
  • 4 medium cloves garlic, minced
  • pinches of red pepper flakes, to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse or kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano (optional)
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup finely grated parmesan or aged pecorino cheese (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
Procedure for Garlic Bread:
  1. Heat your oven’s broiler. Line a large baking sheet with foil to limit the mess you make. Cut baguette lengthwise and arrange pieces cut side up in pan.
  2. Put butter, garlic, pepper flakes and salt in a small saucepan and melt over medium-high heat, stirring, until garlic is sizzling in the butter (but not browning).
  3. Remove from heat and stir in oregano and parsley. Spoon evenly over bread. Sprinkle bread with parmesan, if using.
  4. Broil — keeping a close watch on it and turning it as needed for even coloring — for 2 to 3 minutes. Seriously, watch it like a hawk. Nothing’s sadder than under- or over-cooked garlic bread :(
  5. Remove from oven and cut into segments.

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