Spaghetti with …

One of the many awesome things about living in Walkerville is there are several great restaurants which are easily walkable to. One of my favorites is Vito’s Pizzeria.  When we go I typically get the steak or seafood feature while Matt goes for something I never make, mainly because I hate tomatoes, spaghetti with tomato sauce.  I know when I tagged this next recipe I had Matt in mind…

BECAUSE it’s a recipe for Spaghetti & Meatballs and it comes from the cookbook:

I first formed the meat balls. I heated olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.  I added onions and fennel seeds and cooked stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes when the onions were starting to brown. 

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I removed the onions and fennel seeds from the skillet and let them cool slightly.

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I mixed ground pork, parsley, panko breadcrumbs, an egg, and salt and pepper with the cooled onions and fennel seeds.

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Once combined I formed meatballs, about 1 inch diameter each.  I placed the meatballs in the fridge to firm up a bit.

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Meanwhile I got to work on the sauce. I heated olive oil in a sauce pan over medium heat.  Then I added red pepper flakes, onion, garlic and shredded carrots.  I stirred occasionally and cooked for 10 minutes. 

HOLY BLURRY!! Sorry about that readers!!
HOLY BLURRY!! Sorry about that readers!!

Then I added a can of crushed tomatoes to the skillet, seasoned with salt and reduced the heat let the sauce simmer stirring occasionally.

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I heated oil in large skillet over medium high heat. I also heated a large pot of salted water on medium high heat.  Once the oil in the skillet was hot I added the meatballs to the skillet and turned the heat down to medium.  I cooked the meatballs on each side for 3-4 minutes until they browned. 

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In total the meatballs cooked about 15 minutes in the skillet when I removed them from the skillet and placed them in pan with the sauce. 

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Around this time the water was boiling so I cooked my pasta according the package directions.  Once the pasta was cooked I strained it and placed it in serving bowls.  I then topped with the sauce and meatballs.

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The Verdict: As a non-tomato person I actually ate this and didn’t hate it!  The sauce had a nice bit of spice to it.  But by far the star of the dish were the meatballs.  THEY WERE TASTY!!!  The combination of the fennel with the pork, parsley and panko was perfection!  Every year my family chooses a country to make their cuisine for Christmas dinner, this year Italy was chosen.  I am pretty sure these meatballs will make an appearance at Christmas dinner!!