Sunday, December 26

What a Meatball!

veal meatball sandwich with fennel and mushrooms

If you grew up in New England like I did, then you know that the word "meatball" has more than one meaning. It's more common usage refers to the food -- a small, round ball of meat that is cooked and served with tomato sauce. It's less common but more colorful usage refers to someone, usually a big, beefy guy -- also called a "chooch," -- who does something rude or bone-headed. In that situation, you'd say, "What a meatball." Get it? Good.

Now you need to get yourself some ground veal from Strauss Free Raised Veal, a Wisconsin based company committed to raising calves more humanely, to make my Veal Meatballs with Fennel, Mushroom, and Shallot Tomato Sauce.

Now, it's time for a meatball.

Strauss veal hot dog DSC_0015
Italian Style Veal Hot Dogs with Onions, Peppers, and Mushrooms. 

Veal Meatballs with Fennel, Mushroom, and Shallot Tomato Sauce
Serves 4
Printable recipe.

Meatballs:
1 pound ground veal
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/3 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1 egg, lightly beaten
3 tablespoons fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Sauce:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large shallot, thinly sliced (about 3/4 cup)
1 small fennel bulb, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
1 cup sliced white button or cremini mushrooms
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 (32 ounce) can crushed tomatoes with juices, preferably San Marzano tomatoes
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
4 (6-inch) torpedo rolls
Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and crushed red pepper flakes for garnish

1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.

2. In a large bowl, combine all meatball ingredients. Using your hands, mix until the consistency is moist and the meat holds together well. If it's too dry, add a little bit of water, or another egg. If it's too moist, add some more bread crumbs. Using your hands, roll meat into 1 1/2-inch balls. It should yield 14-16 meatballs.

3. Place meatballs on prepared baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes until golden brown.

4. Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, warm 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add shallots and saute 2 minutes until just wilted. Add fennel and saute 3-5 minutes until just softened. Add mushrooms and saute 5 minutes until lightly browned. Add white wine and let cook for 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes, red pepper flakes and salt. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 5-7 minutes. Add cooked meatballs to the sauce and cook over medium heat for 5-7 minutes until heated through. Turn off heat, and stir in basil.

5. Place torpedo rolls under the broiler until lightly toasted. Place 3-4 meatballs per roll, and top with a couple of spoonfuls of sauce. Garnish with grated cheese and a sprinkling of crushed red pepper flakes. Serve hot.






36 comments:

yardsailor said...

Having known many "meatballs" in my years growing up in Fox Point, I would like to make the meatballs, the sauce sounds wonderful! Have never had anything made with ground veal.

Darlene said...

I would make shepperd's pie.

paintnwiz said...

I LOVE veal, and am so happy to see it raised this way! I'd love to try it!

Witch of Stitches said...

I'd like to try your meatball recipe. I generally use beef, pork and veal for my meatballs.Nice give-away!
BTW - I grew up about 80 miles north of NYC and my dad (who comes from NYC) used the term "chooch" regularly, meatball as well!

Allison said...

I am pretty sure I would make your meatball recipe with the veal! Looks great!

Joanne said...

I love veal but always feel kind of guilty about eating it. And now...I don't have to! These meatballs look great...I'll definitely be checking out this company!

Lisa@ButteryBooks said...

Despite the amount of food I have eaten in the past two days, that meatball sandwich is making my stomach growl!

George said...

Veal scaloppini of coarse!!

Annelise Kelly said...

I don't think I've ever made a meatball in my life, so that's what I'd go for--a tribute to foodblogga! Sounds yummy, too.

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

Merry Christmas, Susan! Hope you've been having holiday cheer with both types of meatballs!

The Diligent Diletante said...

at the risk of sounding like a starving child, your meatball pic looks phenomenal and just made me hungry again. needless to say, that is what I would want to try making...unless hubby has a different idea in mind of course...

farida said...

I hope can make the meatball for my family by this recipe, thanks

farida
http://faridawinarni71.co.cc

kitchenbitchblog.com said...

I LOVE veal! I think I would try and make an Indian dish with it. i usually make veal saltimbocca

karmaperdiem said...

I love veal. I too love to make homemade meatballs with veal as one of my main meat ingredients.
Nice giveaway!

Erin said...

I've boycotted veal for so long it's hard to say what I'd make with it! I'm thinking perhaps a veal tourtiere as a nod to our neighbors to the North.

The Food Hunter said...

Hubby and I are both huge veal fans... I would make veal milanese and your meatballs! Coming from Philly I've known a lot of meatballs in my life. :-)

Liz the Chef said...

We had my grandmother's meatballs last night! Not a veal-eater but impressed by your reference/source of veal. Thanks.

karen said...

That's easy. I'd make your meatballs! Fennel and mushroom tomato sauce sounds delicious! Thanks for the awesome give-away.

We Are Not Martha said...

Veal meatballs sound like a little piece of heaven right now :) :) Of course, I totally know a lot of human meatballs in my life too!!

Sues

Lia said...

Definitely meatballs. No, wait... yes, meatballs.

sfoofie said...

glad you like a WI product! I would love to make the meatballs and put them with some pasta instead of a sandwich. I hope I win!

MS and SS said...

As a vegetarian who often cooks for her with a omnivorous partner, I'm happy to hear about this ethically produced veal

mermaidsbath said...

mmm veal. I think I would make my usual bolognaise, but sub veal for the ground pork shoulder.

Dianabol said...

Thats a great recipe. Thanks and happy holidays.

Dianne

Fr said...

Ground veal? I thnk some stuffed ravioli would by yummy (w/your sauce!)

sherryinstitches said...

Haven't had veal in years...would love to try this veal especially since the calves are raised this way. Couldn't bring myself to eat the other ones...thought maybe if no one bought it they would change their ways. Maybe it is working.

Katherine said...

I would make a meatball sub for my Papa!

Katherine

katherinedibello@gmail.com

karenalbro said...

I would love to try your meatballs!

Livin Local said...

Oh, I do love me a delicious drippy meatball sandwich. Yes, I realize that the term sandwich clearly advertises that I've always been a west coast girl, but that's alright by me. ;-)

The Teacher Cooks said...

I want to try your recipe for the wonderful meatballs! They look delicious and so satisfying.

ChichaJo said...

I do love meatballs (the ball of ground beef type, not the beefy guy type)! I wish that we had a good source of veal in these parts though!

Kristen said...

These meatballs look soooo good!! Veal is so good in meatballs!

Jeanne @ CookSister! said...

Oh MY, that looks good! And nice to see humanely, ethically raised veal - I love eating it but haven't done so for ages because of ethical concerns. Hope you had a fab Christmas and hope you have a splendin 2011!

Amy @ The Savvy Kitchen said...

Thanks for sharing all these great recipes! I've started a new cooking blog myself and would any feedback or comments you can give, so please be sure to check out The Savvy Kitchen at www.savvykitchen.blogspot.com. I look forward to continuing reading your blog in 2011!

whozyerdanny said...

Susan, this meatball would love some of the meatballs!

tasteofbeirut said...

Veal is so hard to find but I would much rather use it than beef. Your meatballs sound wonderful.

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