Meatballs in tomato sauce

main courses
Time 50m Difficulty Easy Serves 4
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 16 oz stale crustless bread
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 oz freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 7 fl oz milk
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/2 cup sultanas and pine nuts
  • 20 oz pomodoro pelato di Napoli (Naples peeled plump tomatoes)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Soak the bread in a little milk. Squeeze gently to remove any excess liquid and place in a bowl with the ground beef, parsley and garlic. Mix well and add the egg, a pinch of salt, black pepper, the parmesan and sultanas and pine nuts. Combine thoroughly with your hands. Shape into meatballs, and fry in plenty of hot oil in a large heavy pan over a medium heat for 25–30 minutes. Keep turning the meatballs carefully to prevent them catching on the bottom of the pan. Remove from the pan, drain on kitchen paper and set aside. Meanwhile, make the tomato sauce. Sweat the onion in a little olive oil in a heavy pan over a medium heat until soft and translucent. Add the tomato and season with salt and black pepper. Transfer the meatballs to the sauce and cook for 10 minutes to heat through. Serve hot.