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Making Good Use of Those Extra Meatballs

Yesterday I made a big try of meatballs so Michelle could use some in her Italian Wedding Soup. Since we still had a lot left to use, we decided to put some in sauce and simmer them and then make some meatball sub sandwiches. Sean opted to have just spaghetti and meatballs, but I made a sub for myself on some garlic bread.

Meatball Sub Sandwiches

For the meatballs:

2 slices of white bread (use good white bread for this)

1/3 cup buttermilk

3/4 pound ground beef

1/4 pound ground  pork

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

1 large egg yolk

1 garlic clove, minced

Salt and pepper

For the sauce:

3 tablespoons olive oil

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes

1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes

3 tablespoons minced fresh basil (if you’re using dried basil, cut this in at least half)

1/4 teaspoon sugar

Salt

For the garlic bread:

1 loaf Italian bread or French bread

4 tablespoons butter, softened (use less if you like, I often do)

2 teaspoons olive oil

3 cloves garlic, crushed

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (or other cheese of your liking, or no cheese at all, it’s optional)

Fresh mozzarella, sliced for the sandwiches

For the meatballs, remove and discard the crusts from the bread, then tear the bread into small pieces. Mash the bread pieces and buttermilk to a smooth paste in a large bowl, using a fork.

Add the beef, pork, Parmesan, parsley, yolk, garlic, 3/4 teaspoon of salt, and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper to the mashed bread. Stir the mixture gently until combined and uniform. Gently form the mixture into 1-inch round meatballs ( I made them smaller this time for the soup we made).

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the meatballs on a wire rack in a cookie sheet or roasting pan. Cook for approximately 20 to 30 minutes or until well browned.

For the sauce, cook the oil and garlic in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring often until fragrant but not browned, about 2 minutes (don’t scorch the garlic, it tastes pretty bad when you do. As soon as you can smell it, you’re ready for the next step). Stir in the crushed tomatoes and diced tomatoes with their juice. Bring to a simmer and cook until slightly thickened, 15 to 20 minutes. Stir in the basil and sugar. Season with salt to taste. Add the meatballs to the sauce and simmer until the meatballs are heated through, about 10 minutes.

For the garlic bread, preheat the broiler. Cut the loaf of bread in half lengthwise. In a small bowl, mix the butter, oil, garlic and oregano. Spread the mixture evenly on the bread. On a baking sheet, place the bread under the broiler for 3-5 minutes, or until slightly browned. Check frequently to make sure it doesn’t burn. Remove from the broiler and serve, or, if using the cheese, sprinkle cheese over the bread and place under the broiler for another 2 minutes, or until cheese is melted and slightly brown.

To assemble the sandwich, place as many meatballs as you desire on the bread. Cover the meatballs with some extra sauce and add some slices of fresh mozzarella. Place the sandwich back under the broiler for 1 to 2 minutes until the cheese is melted.

Of course, there are always variations on this. I don’t eat cheese, so my sandwich went without. Michelle only wanted a small sandwich so she could have some pasta too, so she only had a half sandwich. You could also add some Italian sausage to the mix and have them on the sandwich as well.

It’s a great use of some leftovers. Everyone loves a good sub sandwich, and having this one on the toasted garlic bread makes it even better.

I think I am going to make some shrimp tomorrow, although I am not sure how I am going to do it just yet. Check back and see what I come up with. until then, enjoy your evening and enjoy your meal!

 

 
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Posted by on August 13, 2012 in Beef, Breads, Cooking, Dinner, Sandwiches, Sauce

 

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My Sweetie is in the Kitchen Making Soup

When it comes to making soup in our family, I have to cede the kitchen to Michelle. She makes great soups of all kinds, all year round. I had just made some chicken stock earlier in the week, using the chicken carcasses we had used to make dinner last Sunday, so we were trying to come up with a soup to make. Michelle has been having an itch for some Italian Wedding Soup, so she decided that was what she was going to make today.

Italian Wedding Soup

For the meatballs:

2 slices of white bread (use good white bread for this)

1/3 cup buttermilk

3/4 pound ground beef

1/4 pound ground  pork

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

1 large egg yolk

1 garlic clove, minced

Salt and pepper

For the soup:

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 cup minced onion

3 carrots, peeled and diced

1 celery stalk, diced

5 cups chicken stock

1/2 cup white wine

1 cup of small pasta (Michelle actually used orzo this time around)

12 ounces spinach, washed and trimmed

For the meatballs, remove and discard the crusts from the bread, then tear the bread into small pieces. Mash the bread pieces and buttermilk to a smooth paste in a large bowl, using a fork.

Add the beef, pork, Parmesan, parsley, yolk, garlic, 3/4 teaspoon of salt, and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper to the mashed bread. Stir the mixture gently until combined and uniform. Gently form the mixture into 1-inch round meatballs ( I made them smaller this time for the soup).

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the meatballs on a wire rack in a cookie sheet or roasting pan. Cook for approximately 20 to 30 minutes or until well browned.

For the soup, heat the olive oil in a large heavy-bottomed soup pot. Add the onion, carrots and celery and saute until softened, 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the chicken stock and wine and bring to a boil. Add the pasta to the simmering broth and cook for 6 to 8 minutes, until the pasta is tender. Add the meatballs to the soup and simmer for one minute. Add salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the fresh spinach and cook for 1 minute, until the spinach is just wilted. Ladle into soup bowls and sprinkle with extra grated Parmesan cheese.

This recipe makes a lot of soup. The original recipe is double what I have shown here, but we halved it and it still made enough soup for dinner tonight and filled storage containers for 4 or 5 lunches, so you can get a lot mileage out of this one. it made the entire house smell great while it was  cooking. You could use any type of small pasta that you like for this soup, we just happen to have orzo on hand so we decided to use that instead. The other nice thing was I made extra meatballs so we have some to use for some sauce for a dinner this week.

Okay, it’s really hot and humid here today, so I am going to slip into the air conditioning in the bedroom and relax for the rest of the evening. I do have some recipes planned for this week using shrimp, chicken and maybe some squid. We’ll see if anything comes up along the way. Until next time, enjoy your evening and enjoy your meal!

 
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Posted by on August 12, 2012 in Cooking, Dinner, Soups & Stews

 

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Jennifer Probst

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Laissez Faire

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