The hubs is pretty picky- so its easy to get into a funk of eating the same things week after week and I REFUSE to be the Hamburger Monday, Pizza Friday people. So I'm always looking for ways to change things up to kind of break him out of his usual favorites.
This is one of the ways I manage to make the hum-drum spaghetti a little fun and different.
Enter spaghetti meatballs. A jumbo meatball with spaghetti mixed into the meatball.
1/8 pound spaghetti or angel hair pasta- literally a handful about the size of a quarter.
1 to 1.5 pounds ground meat (you can use beef, turkey, or a mix of beef, veal and pork- whatever you prefer! I used ground beef because my turkey wasn't defrosted, but both are delish!)
grated parmesan cheese (I toss in a couple of handfuls)
1 tsp powdered garlic
1 tsp onion powder
2 tbsp. Italian seasoning
1. Cook the spaghetti, drain and allow to cool. I usually toss it in cold water for a few minutes to chill before I mix it into the meatballs so I don't scald my hands. Once its cool I drain it again and put it on some paper towels to dry out a little. Too much water makes for bad meatballs.
2. In a mixing bowl toss in the meat, spices, egg, cooked spaghetti and cheese. I use the cheese instead of breadcrumbs, but you could do both if you like. You can also play with the seasonings a bit to get them the way you like. Then dive on in there and get to mixing.
3. Spray a muffin tin with PAM to keep them from sticking, and form big meatballs. The goal is to make them the size of the opening on the pan, so they sit up off of the bottom. That way the fat drips out and away from the meatballs.
4. Bake at 400 for 30-35 minutes, or until done inside. The spaghetti on the outside will get crunchy and stay soft on the inside.
5. While baking, make a quick tomato sauce. I have been told I make a mean sauce, but its really super simple. I don't really have measurements, I just put stuff in until it tastes right- but here is the general idea.
2 cans of sauce
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1-3 cloves of grated garlic
Chilli Pepper Flakes
First, in a saucepan put a tbsp. of oil. Turn on medium low heat. Add a sprinkle of pepper flakes and grate the garlic into the oil. If you like mild garlic, use one clove if you like lots of garlic add more- its up to you. Allow the oil to warm up and infuse with the pepper and garlic flavors.
Once it warms up the garlic will start to speak to you and melt a bit. That's when you add in the tomato sauce, because you don't want the garlic and pepper flakes to burn. Stir the garlic and oil mix into the sauce to get the flavor spread out.
Add in about half a palm-ful of Italian seasoning, and a quarter palm-ful of kosher salt. Then I add in about 1/2 teaspoon of onion powder and a spoon of sugar to cut down the acidity of the tomatoes. I let that all come together and then taste to see what it needs and add it if it does. You can never take it out, but you can always add it later.
6. When the meatballs are done, pull them out of the oven and run a knife around the rim of the muffin cup and they'll pop right out.
7. Plate them up. You can either serve them on a plate with sauce and a bit of mozzarella cheese, or eat them like my husband does. He prefers to smash one between two slices of crusty bread with some sauce and no cheese. Both are delish. Mine is a bit lower carb, however.