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Nicole’s pasta sauce and meatballs

So recently I made a new friend and we have lots in common, including a passion for cooking!!

She is of Italian origins so she have me the recipe for her infamous pasta suave with meatballs. I have to try it soon!!
So without further ado, here is the recipe straight from Nicole:

Italian Fried Meatballs
2 lbs ground meat
1 lb. ground pork (you can use all ground meat if you dont want to use pork)
2 cups Italian style (or seasoned) breadcrumbs (you can also use 3 or 4 slices of day old crusty Italian bread, cut up into tiny pieces, but I skip this step and just use breadcrumbs, lol, 99.9% homemade)
1 cup of parmesan or pecorino-romano cheese
1 cup fresh Italian flat-leafed parsley, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic finely minced
2 eggs
Salt and pepper

Mix all ingredients together until everything is well blended. Roll into meatballs and fry them in olive oil (EVOO). Allow to brown on one side before turning meatball over. And then keep turning and turning until done. They should be a nice crispy brown, don’t take them off the heat too soon!

Makes about 24 meatballs

Homemade Italian Sauce

1/2 lb. to 1 lb. pork spare ribs
About 4 to 6 thin chicken breasts
Meatballs (see above)
4 to 6 garlic cloves, minced (or more to taste)
About 1 cup onions, finely minced
3 28 oz. cans crushed tomatoes
2 small cans tomato paste
2 cups water
About 1 cup parmesan cheese or to taste
4 fresh bay leaves
Salt and pepper (I dont really measure the below ingredients, just add them in!)
Pinch or two of sugar to remove the acidity of the sauce
1 lb. pasta (I prefer fettuccine noodles but you can use whatever you like)
1 loaf fresh Italian bread

Saute garlic cloves and onion in olive oil in large pot. About 2 minutes.
Add crushed tomatoes and tomato paste. And water, salt, pepper, basil, oregano, sugar, and parm cheese and stir all well.
Throw in the bay leaves. Add the pork ribs and chicken.
Usually, I also add in about 12 of the meatballs (uncooked from the recipe above. I fry a dozen, and let the other dozen cook in sauce).
Bring the sauce to a simmer, and keep on a low simmer. Everything should be cooked through in about 2 1/2 hours if in a hurry, BUT the best way to do this is to make early in the AM and simmer all day, at least 4 to 5 hours (or longer), to really bring out the flavors in the meat for the best sauce. The sauce should not be too thick or too thin, it will be just right. But you MUST keep stirring all day to prevent burning, so you cannot leave it on the stove and go!

The pork ribs and chicken will be so tender, they will just fall apart. You can remove the bones from the pork ribs if you want when done, or just tell your guest to be careful of the bones, lol. Usually best to mix up a little meat and sauce with the pasta, but keep the majority of it separate, so guests can add however much or little sauce they like. This makes A LOT of sauce. You should freeze some, (meat and all) and it will be good to for a month or two. Sprinkle with more parm cheese to serve!

***You can brown the pork ribs, chicken and meatballs before you throw them in the sauce, but I never do. I just throw them in raw.
***Also, I am a huge fan of canned crushed tomatoes. But you could always use tomatoes and prepare them from scratch and blend them in a blender (for your preferred consistency, I like a smooth sauce), but I prefer the canned stuff. (So again, 99.9% homemade, lol)

Serve with thick Italian bread. Sauce is great w/out the noodles too. Just a big bowl of sauce with ribs, chicken and meatballs and bread for dipping!

Buon appetito!!!




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