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A little twist on a classic meatball really makes a world of a difference.
Start by making your favorite red sauce or just open up a jar and heat the sauce in a saucepan.
Into a large mixing bowl, add the ground chuck, half of the Parmesan cheese, garlic paste, egg, bread crumbs, salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, and milk. Get your (clean) hands in there and thoroughly mix.
Your next step is to form the meatballs. My meatballs are fairly large, a bit smaller than a tennis ball, but you can shape them how you would like. The goal is to trap the rice and cheese, as to not expose that surprise.
Preheat your oven to 375 F.
Wet your hands with a bit of water. Put your rice in a bowl so it’s handy. Take about a quarter cup of the meatball mixture and lay it into the palm of your hand.
Take about a tablespoon or more of the rice and place it in the middle of the meat. Take a pinch of the remaining Parmesan cheese, and place on top of the rice.
Fold the meat over the rice and cheese, sealing it in the center, and form into a meatball.
Place meatball onto a large baking sheet, and repeat with the remaining meat mixture.
When done put the baking sheet into the preheated oven, and cook for about 25-30 minutes. Remove the meatballs from the oven and set aside.
I like to take the cooked meatballs and give them a good sear when they are finished. So if you are going to do this … To a large skillet, on medium heat, add the olive oil.
Add in some of the meatballs and continue to cook until they are nice and dark on the exterior. Set aside and repeat with the remaining meatballs.
Cook your pasta.
When you are ready to plate, take some of the pasta and add it to the bottom of a plate, or bowl. Add a couple of meatballs, then top with some sauce. Shower with a bit more Parmesan cheese, and serve.
When I plated these for my wife and kids, they were totally surprised. They had no clue what was inside, and they were amazed. My wife was blown away. She said (sorry mom-in-law) that these were the best ever and nothing like her mom’s and were well, much better.
So I met the weekday challenge. A super tender meatball, that when cut into yielded a nice pocket of rice and cheese. And when rubbed into the sauce, well, it was just dang good.
The next time you are looking to make some meatballs, give this technique a shot. It’s well worth the extra step.
Nancy is the Coupon Clipping Cook, which means she not only has an astounding number of recipes to share with us (her TK recipe box is busting at the seams!) but she's also got loads of money-saving tips in her blog (she worked at a grocery store for a number of years, so she knows her stuff). She has some pretty amazing creations, like Roasted Garlic Potato Soup and Nutty Coconut Chicken. Go check them out!
Heather is a Texas native and the blogger behind Heather's Dish. She's mom to Weston, wife to Nate, and they live in Little Rock, Arkansas with their two "stubborn and saucy" dogs Bunker and Keira. In her blog, she shares her photographs, random musings (serious and silly alike), and all kinds of scrumptious recipes---and not just evil variations of her favorite mac and cheese. Her enviable TK recipe box is a testament to that. Go see for yourself!