Spaghetti and Meatballs (November 21, 2009)

David and I are in search of a great spaghetti recipe.We have talked about it for awhile now, not being really satisfied with any of the store sauces available. Today we tried this one from Smitten Kitchen.


1 tablespoon good olive oil
1 cup chopped yellow onion (1 onion)
1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
Pinch of red pepper flakes
1/2 cup good red wine
1 (14-ounce) can pureed tomatoes (we used tomato sauce)
1 (14-ounce) can chopped or diced tomatoes
1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

(We also added a teaspoon of sugar and about a quarter cup of parmesan cheese to cut back on the acidic flavor of the sauce.)

Heat the olive oil in the same pan. Add the onion and saute over medium heat until translucent, 5 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes, and cook for 1 more minute. Add the wine and cook on high heat, scraping up all the brown bits in the pan, until almost all the liquid evaporates, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, parsley, salt, and pepper.

The meatballs were from a different recipe, because I don’t eat red meat.

Cooking spray
1 pound ground turkey meat
1 slice fresh whole-wheat bread crusts removed, pulsed into crumbs (we used 1/3 cup canned bread crumbs)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan, plus more for serving
1/2 cup finely grated carrot
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
2 large cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves, plus more for garnish
2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme leaves
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the broiler. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray. Combine the turkey with all other ingredients in a large work bowl. Form into 2 1/2 -inch balls and place on a baking sheet. Broil for 10 minutes, or until browned and almost entirely cooked through.

We made Penne Pasta to go with our pasta meal.

David: I thought the meat balls were good. The sauce had a bit of the tomato-y sweetness. I would make it again. I would give it a B+.
Carla: I liked the sauce as well, but though it lacked the depth of flavor that I think I am looking for. There simply were not enough spices in the sauce, I think. I would also make it again, but will continue to scout around for additional recipes. B.

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