Slow cooker: Meatballs in Marinara Sauce

Meatballs are probably an odd thing to do in the slow cooker, but we’ve been hearing a lot about marinara sauce, and the slow cooker is still new and has novelty value: so meatballs in marinara it is! Base recipe was from America’s Test Kitchen’s Slow Cooker Revolution.

Ingredients:

  • 2 onions
  • 1/4 cup tomato purée
  • 8 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tsp Italian herb mix
  • 1 tsp red chilli flakes
  • 250ml red wine
  • 2 400g cans chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 3 small slices of white bread, crusts removed
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 500g lean beef mince
  • 3 low-fat sausages, skin removed
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan
  • 2 egg yolks

The onions get chopped and fried up with the spices and herbs.

CameraZOOM-20131103103207339Half of them get taken aside for the meatballs, then the wine goes in the pan to mix in along with the tomato purée.

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This then goes in the slow cooker, along with the two tins of chopped tomatoes, teh water, and the soy sauce

It’s at this point that we realised that marinara sauce is basically just Soph’s regular base tomato sauce: onions, garlic, Italian herbs, chili flakes, tomatoes and Worcestershire sauce! So much for trying an exciting new sauce…

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The set aside onions then have the bread and milk added to them, and get forked to form a paste. At this point it’s clear the onions are cut rather large for this: I should have done them much finer.

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This then has the beef mince and sausage meet added, plus parmesan, egg yolks and seasoning, and gets mixed up by hand (which is quite fun!).

CameraZOOM-20131103105411919This gets rolled into meatballs (we got 20 out of it) and they get microwaved for 5 minutes to render the fat out, although there wasn’t much in out as it was lean beef and low-fat sausages.

CameraZOOM-20131103111302891These then go into the slow cooker on low for 4 hours, then they had another 4 on warm before we ate.

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When we were about ready to eat I made up some pasta: just egg plus double its weight of 00 pasta flour.

CameraZOOM-20131103182812870This gets made into a dough, then chills for 20 minutes before rolling out in the pasta machine.

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Finally once it’s all thin it gets made into spaghetti. OK technically it’s linguine as it’s a sheet cut into strips, not rolled round stuff…

CameraZOOM-20131103195220978This only takes a couple of minutes to cook, and it gets served with the meatballs on top and the onion baguette bread I made earlier.

CameraZOOM-20131103195800169It all tasted great! Which is not surprising given it was basically Soph’s regular tomato sauce with added meatballs!

  • 2 onions
  • 1/4 cup tomato purée
  • 8 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tsp Italian herb mix
  • 1 tsp red chilli flakes
  • 250ml red wine
  • 2 400g cans chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 3 small slices of white bread, crusts removed
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 500g lean beef mince
  • 3 low-fat sausages, skin removed
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan
  • 2 egg yolks

Fry onions in spices, reserve half then add tomato purée and wine, then transfer to slow cooker with chopped tomatoes, soy and water.

Add bread and milk to reserved onion mix, mash to form paste. Add meat, parmesan, yolks and season. Form about 20 meatballs, and microwave for 5 minutes to render fat out. Put meatballs in slow cooker.

Cook on low for 4-6 hours, server with homemade pasta and garlic bread.

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