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Spaghetti and Meatballs

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Ingredients:

For the meatballs:

  • 1 pound ground beef (or a mixture of beef, pork, and/or veal)
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Olive oil for cooking

For the sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Pinch of sugar (optional, to balance acidity)

For serving:

  • 1 pound spaghetti
  • Grated Parmesan cheese
  • Fresh basil leaves for garnish (optional)

Instructions:

Making the meatballs:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine ground beef, breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, parsley, egg, minced garlic, salt, and pepper.
  2. Mix everything together until well combined.
  3. Shape the mixture into meatballs, about 1 to 1.5 inches in diameter.
  4. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  5. Once the oil is hot, add the meatballs to the skillet in a single layer, without overcrowding.
  6. Cook the meatballs, turning occasionally, until browned on all sides and cooked through, about 10-12 minutes. You may need to work in batches depending on the size of your skillet.
  7. Once cooked, transfer the meatballs to a plate lined with paper towels to drain excess oil.

Making the sauce:

  1. In the same skillet used for cooking meatballs, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
  2. Add chopped onion and minced garlic to the skillet and sauté until softened and fragrant, about 3-4 minutes.
  3. Pour in crushed tomatoes and diced tomatoes, including their juices.
  4. Add dried oregano, dried basil, salt, pepper, and a pinch of sugar if desired.
  5. Stir well to combine, then bring the sauce to a simmer.
  6. Let the sauce simmer gently for about 15-20 minutes, allowing the flavours to meld and the sauce to thicken slightly.
  7. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.

Cooking the spaghetti:

  1. While the sauce is simmering, cook the spaghetti according to the package instructions in a large pot of salted boiling water until al dente.
  2. Drain the cooked spaghetti and return it to the pot.

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