Prepare to read the best meatballs recipe. Ever. Bold claim, ha? But I’m so sure about it, I can say it anytime to anyone. It is not heavy but also not boring, creamy but not fatty, and like all my recipes, it is dairy, nut and egg free.
It is tomato season, so it would be a total shame if we didn’t cook a dish with tomatoes as on of the main ingredients. I wanted to make something a bit different, to combine flavours that are all very mainstream but together still serve each other as a “twist”. I decided to cook tomato sauce with basil (a classical combo) and add coconut milk. We all know that basil and tomato go together like peanut butter and jelly (and we really REALLY don’t want peanuts anywhere near our food). In my family we usually add yogurt or creme fraiche but in this case we can’t use any sort of dairy product in our food so we are going to add coconut milk. This combination proved to be absolutely fabulous. Since you can’t just have a sauce with nothing, I made meatballs with it.
Let’s stop talking and get cooking!
For this recipe that will serve 4 grown up people you will need:
- 400g mixed minced meat (half beef and half pork meat)
- leftover bread the size of a small bun (recipe for the homemade delicious bread you can find HERE)
- 2 medium size onions
- 3 cloves garlic
- 4 table spoons olive oil
- 1 can whole tomatoes (usually canned with passata)
- 4 fresh tomatoes (from your mother-in-law’s garden ;P)
- 1/2 teaspoon of dry basil
- 1/2 can coconut milk
- salt and paper
First of all you have to chop onions and garlic. Put the pan on medium heat and brown the onion. Put the meat in a big bowl and add salt, pepper, half of garlic, onion (once it is chilled to room temperature) and breadcrumbs (for breadcrumbs I love to use leftover bread – just give it a spin in a food processor) and combine everything together. Now that you have meat ready you can sculpt it into golf size balls.
Time to heat up the pan (I like to first brown the balls in a hot pan and then put everything in a cast iron pot and then cook everything together).
Put the olive oil in a pan an cook meat balls on all sides for as long as it take to get them nicely brown all over. You will probably want to do it in batches, unless you have a giant pan. When meat balls are ready heat up your big pot. If cast iron, great, if ordinary, it will only be marginally worse, so don’t bother.
Throw the other half of garlic into the pot and let it cook for about 30 seconds. If it has turned brown, toss garlic away and repeat this step. Add fresh tomatoes, season them with salt, pepper and dried basil and cook for a minute or two. Add canned tomatoes along with the juices they came in and your nicely browned meat balls.
Now, that you have finished the active part of the recipe, I suggest you clean the kitchen. It has to be done and what better time than idle cooking time.
About 1 hour later, add coconut milk and stir well. Let it cook for another 15-20 minutes and your delicious lunch/dinner is ready to be served.
We usually eat it with fresh bread but it goes very well with plain white rice. If you want an “I eat-healthy” feel with it you can add brown rice or quinoa.
When you try it, please tell me in the comments section – isn’t this the best meatballs recipe ever?