I sometimes really miss my mom’s home cooking. I feel like that’s especially hit me this week, in the form of homemade Italian food and grilled cheese sandwiches. So I made these Savoury Pan-Fried Italian Meatballs.
Freak reaction from running the LB half? I have no idea.
For years I steered clear of trying to replicate any of my mom’s staple dishes, but I think that needs to change. My mom probably can’t mail me frozen sauce containers and meatballs when I’m 40. I think.
And I just wanted some dang meatballs this week!
So, I took my mom’s traditional recipe and headed into the kitchen Wednesday night, intending to make a slightly healthified and quicker cooking version, referring barely to Andi’s meatball recipe for some measurement specifications. My mom and grandma cook by “feel”, or also known as something I don’t yet have when making the more authentic Italian dishes unsupervised (unless it’s baked ziti).
My mom usually uses half pork and half beef, but I made all-beef ones because that’s what I prefer.
I know they look like an ugly mess here, but sometimes the most delicious stuff is the hardest to photograph.
The secret ingredient is really the Italian breadcrumbs! It helps keep the meatballs moist. If you don’t have Italian breadcrumbs or can’t find them in your local store, add a hearty sprinkling of Italian seasonings (you can find this in the spices aisle at most grocery stores).
And what do you know? These Savoury Pan-Fried Italian Meatballs were delicious!
They didn’t taste identical to my mom’s cooking (what could?), but they hit the spot.
If you’re planning to make a big pot of pasta sauce (like a bolognese), you could also cook these babies by dropping them straight into the pot of sauce and cooking for a couple of hours, like my mom always does. However, I was feeling impatient and had some sauce already prepared, so I just pan-fried them. That helps make them a little crispy, too.
I’ve enjoyed the lunch leftovers as a homemade (and healthier) meatball sub.
I hope you like these Savoury Pan-Fried Italian Meatballs!
Savoury Pan-Fried Italian MeatballsPrint Recipe
- Nonstick olive oil spray
- 1 pound of ground beef
- 1 egg, beaten
- 2 to 3 tablespoons of Italian breadcrumbs
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon of pepper
- Sprinkling of minced garlic to taste
- 2 teaspoons of grated Parmesan or Romano cheese (optional)
- 1/2 to 1 cup of marinara sauce
- In a large bowl, break apart the beef with your hands. Pour the egg over the ground beef, and add the breadcrumbs, salt, pepper, garlic, and (if you like) grated cheese.
- Using your hands, mix the beef mixture in the bowl, ensuring the ingredients are well combined (do not over-mix).
- Form the meat mixture into 12 to 15 small balls using your hands. Add the meatballs to a large pan coated with nonstick spray, and place over medium-low heat. Note: spray liberally (or use 1 tablespoon of olive oil instead) so that the meatballs don’t stick to the pan.
- Cook meatballs until completely cooked (i.e., no longer visibly pink), occasionally turning gently to cook all sides. In the last few moments of cooking, add enough sauce to cover the meatballs.
- Serve warm, alongside pasta or vegetables.