Sunday, August 30, 2009


what's for dinner tonight?

Sunday night is about the only time we can all get together for dinner. No work, no after-school activities, no sports, just a nice dinner with the whole family. So how can I say no when Miss Picky asked for her favorite... Baked Ziti. and Meatballs. and I went one further and made a garlic bread. The Griller was happy he didn't have to grill. He doesn't know tomorrow's plan for dinner yet :)

You can find the recipe for the Baked Ziti by clicking here!

The meatballs are really good, and really moist. If you don't like them so soft and squishy, use less liquid, less eggs and breadcrumbs! I use the bread, we like squishy meatballs! and I'm lazy so I use an ice cream disher!

Mama's Meatballs
adapted from a recipe by Rocco DiSpirito
Printable Recipe

1/4 cup chicken stock or water
1/4 yellow onion
1 clove garlic
a handful of fresh parsley, chopped
2 lb ground beef
4 slices white bread (soaked with a little bit water) or breadcrumbs (not soaked)
3 eggs
1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon salt
Marinara sauce (One jar or homemade)
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

Add the chicken stock, onion, garlic and parsley in a blender and puree.

In a large bowl, mix the stock mixture, meat, soaked bread, eggs, cheese, red pepper flakes and salt. Combine well but don't over mix.

Put a little olive oil on your hands (water on your hands work well, too!) and form a bit of the mixture into balls the size of a golf ball. You can also use a small ice cream scoop. Easy and not messy at all.

Pour about a little olive oil into a sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the meatballs to the pan (working in batches if necessary) and brown the meatballs, then turn and brown the other side.

Heat the marinara sauce in a stockpot over medium heat. Lift the meatballs out of the sauté pan with a slotted spoon and put them in the pot with the sauce. Stir gently. Lower heat and simmer for at least one hour (I leave it simmering for a couple hours.)

Garlic Bread! Easy, get one of those soft supermarket Italian breads. Slice it the long way in half. Spread some softened butter on both sides and some finely chopped, totally minced garlic on top of the butter. Spread the garlic into the butter, and sprinkle with salt. Close the bread together. Wrap in tin foil and bake at 350 degrees F about ten minutes or so. Then unwrap the foil, open the bread a bit and broil the top until it browns. Then slice and serve!

and a perfect ending to a perfect dinner...

Chocolate Mousse Chip Italian Ices!


  1. Carol, sounds like a great meal from beginning to end.

    John and I both love garlic bread ... lots of butter and lots of garlic.

    If I make meatballs, I use Mama's meatball recipe. They ARE good. And we want ours squishy, too ... not too dense.

    The Italian ice sounds like the perfect ending to your meal.

  2. I grew up with making meatballs using stale italian bread soaked in water with some parsley. I was always asking to squeeze the water out of the bread as a kid. Definitely makes for a softer meat-a-ball!

  3. Looks like a delicious meal! I will be saving the meatball recipe!

  4. I shouldn't have come here before dinner - I'm drooling all over the keyboard. You've gotta love Rocco's Mama (and I'm sure Ms. Picky is thinking the same about you)!

    No details on the dessert??? I sounds wonderful!

  5. I guessed..from this morning's pic! LOL
    Looks delicious, love ziti and meatballs...

  6. Great looking meal - love Mama's Meatballs!!
    But where is Trixie?????

  7. Your meatball recipe is similar to mine and I can tell how good yours is. As you and I both know the secret is in the moistened bread crumbs. Shhh don't tell anyone.


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