Nonna’s Neapolitan Meatballs

Ingredients:
4 slices bread (2 packed cups’ worth)
2 pounds ground beef or you can use a mix of pork, veal. and beef
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1/4 cup grated Parmagiano Reggiano
1/4 cup golden raisins (optional)
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts (optional)
1 1/2 teaspoons fine sea salt
15 turns white pepper
4 large eggs
1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
825 MAIN Marinara Sauce

Preparation:
1. Heat the oven to 325°F. Put the fresh bread in a bowl, cover it with water, and let it soak for a minute or so. Pour off the water and wring out the bread, then crumble and tear it into tiny pieces.
2. Combine the bread with all the remaining ingredients except the tomato sauce in a medium mixing bowl, adding them in the order they are listed. Add the dried bread crumbs last to adjust for wetness: the mixture should be moist wet, not sloppy wet.

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3. Using a small scoop, scoop and level dropping the meatball evenly on a baking sheet. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. The meatballs will be firm but still juicy and gently yielding when they’re cooked through. (At this point, you can cool the meatballs and hold them in the refrigerator for as long as a couple of days or freeze them for the future.
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4. Meanwhile, heat the 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce in a sauté pan large enough to accommodate the meatballs comfortably.

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5. Place the meatballs into the pan of sauce and nudge the heat up ever so slightly. Simmer the meatballs for half an hour or so (this isn’t one of those cases where longer is better) so they can soak up some sauce. Keep them there until it’s time to eat.

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See our recipes for
Gluten-Free Meatballs
Vegetarian: Ricotta & Zucchini Balls
Vegan Eggplant Balls

Baked Stuffed Eggplant

It’s hard to imagine south Italian cooking without eggplant — on pasta, grilled, stewed, roasted, stuffed and more. I included a stuffed version that is absolutely delicious with non other than our authentic Marinara sauce!

Romano Cheese
Ingredients:
2 medium eggplant
8 oz ground beef
1 large thinly sliced onion
4 Tbl extra virgin olive oil
1 cup ricotta
4 Tbl grated pecorino romano cheese
2 eggs
One 25 oz jar 825 MAIN Marinara Sauce

Procedure:
1. Set the oven at 400°F/200°C.
2. Halve the eggplants lengthwise. Place them in the baking dish, cut sides up. Drizzle generously with olive oil and season to taste. Bake for 20 minutes or until tender.
3. Scoop out the eggplant flesh with a spoon and mash it gently with a fork leaving about 1/2 eggplant pulp along sides.
4. Saute ground beef, onion, diced eggplant pulp in EVOO until evenly cooked. Drain excess liquid.
5. Stir in ricotta, egg and cheese ¼ cup    Marinara Sauce.6.Stuff both eggplant halves top with remainder of 825 MAIN Fresh Marinara Sauce and bake in oven for 20 minutes at a preheated 350 degree oven

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes
Serves 4