Sunday, February 1, 2009

The Best Meatballs I Ever Made

This is the best meatball recipe I have ever made, I almost always make them in a tomato based sauce, but you could make these in a bbq sauce base or even a brown gravy base, I think one easy way would be to buy canned beef gravy or gravy mix packets and then add your meatballs to it to have a different style, these you could serve with mashed potatoes or noodles. But this recipe is for the tomato based version, I use a 5-6 quart size saucepan with a good fitting lid. Here is the line-up: 2 cans of diced canned tomatoes, 2 cans, large of Hunt's 4 cheese sauce, located on the spaghetti aisle, 3 eggs, 1 tube of saltine crackers, crushed, 1 package dry spaghetti sauce seasoning, 2 cups shredded fiesta or cheddar cheese, chopped or dry onion, if you like. If this seems like to much to handle for your little family, by all means cut it in half, it will work just fine.
Add 2 cans diced tomatoes, if you only have whole tomatoes, these will work also, just chop them up before you add them to the sauce, after the tomatoes, bring to simmer on low heat while you work on the meatball mixture.

Add 2 large cans of Hunt's four cheese sauce, you know this is the cheap sauce on the bottom shelf, it tastes really good, so don't muck up this recipe by using the expensive hoiety-toiety sauce on the upper shelves.

Use about 2 1/2 pounds of 80/20 ground beef. You can also use ground turkey or a leaner beef if you are watching fat and calories.

Add one package of dry spaghetti seasoning mix to ground beef.

Add 3 eggs to the meat mixture, looks kind of like dogfood right now, doesn't it?

Add 2 cups of shredded fiesta or cheddar cheese, either one is fine, the fiesta just adds a couple different flavors, with the different cheeses.

Add one tube of crushed saltine crackers, I gently crush mine in their own tube, it works well.

Mix all the ingredients together with the best tool you have, your clean hands! Mix until completely blended together.

Roll the prepared meat mixture into balls, I roll mine about walnut size, but you can size yours any size you want, size does not matter :)

Place each meatball in a single layer on top of the sauce, when you get the layer done, then gently submerge under the sauce to start a new layer.

After layering the meatballs, gently push each one down in the sauce, then you will have room for a second layer. Make sure all meatballs are covered before you put the lid on to simmer.

After making sure all the little meatballs are dunked under the warm sauce, put a lid on and turn to low heat, then DON'T TOUCH for one hour, don't open the lid, don't stir, nothing, Believe me when I tell you that this will work. It will cook these little guys completely and the sauce will become rich and hardy. I know, it is so tempting to stir, but please don't.

A homemade meatball sub sandwich that any Italian mama would approve, topped with shredded mozzarella.

It's a hot and not so spicya meatball and spaghetti, lotta of love'n on a plate!

A work of art, a beautiful glistening meatball, dripping with sauce. All finished this 5 quart cooker of meatballs and sauce will make several meals or can be frozen. The hardest part of this dish was rolling out all the little meatballs by hand. Use these little guys in a meatball sub, spaghetti and meatballs, meatball stew, layer with lasagna noodles and cheese, the possibilities are endless. Happy eating !! Love to you all.

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