This is the way meatballs should be done! Lots of flavour and lots of love! Don’t let the anchovies scare you off. They literally melt away and add such an incredible flavour (not fishy!). I have discovered with some lamb shanks that I do with anchovies too that they (lamb and anchovies) are GOOD friends!
1 Red onion, finely chopped
4 anchovies, chopped
500g lamb mince
50g fresh breadcrumbs
Bunch flat leaf parsley, chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
700 mls Passata
1 large glass of red wine
2 Tbsp fresh oregano chopped
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp caster sugar
50g parmesan, grated
– Heat 1 Tbsp of the olive oil in a large frying pan. Add the red onion and gently fry for 5 minutes until softened.
– Add the anchovies and cook for a further minute – they will melt into the oil. Set pan aside and allow the onion mixture to cool
– Put the mince in a bowl and add the breadcrumbs, egg, chopped parsley (reserve some for garnich) and the cooked onion mixture. Season and mix together with your hands. Shape into small meatballs and chill until needed.
– Heat 1 tbsp of the oil and gently fry the garlic for 30 seconds. Add the passata and red wine and bring to a simmer. Add the oregano, vinegar and sugar, then season well and simmer for around 10 minutes.
– Meanwhile, heat the remaining oil in another pan and fry the meatballs for 5 minutes, until they are brown all over. Remove, add to the tomato sauce and cook for a further 10 – 15 minutes.
– Serve sprinkled with the Parmesan, remaining parsley and pasta.
Its important to brown the meatballs before adding them to the sauce so that they get a crust on them, which will stop them from going soggy.