No offense to the “Meatless Monday craze,” but meatballs are quite common on Mondays at by house. They’re a great thing to make early in the week since I can send my husband to work with a meatball sandwich or repurpose the leftovers for my kids. Even better is this one-pot strategy to “poaching” your meatballs in your preferred tomato sauce since doesn’t take much time or clean-up at all.
SHOPPING LIST: 2 jars tomato sauce, 1 lb. ground turkey, 1 lb. hot italian turkey sausage, 2 eggs, chopped garlic, parmesan cheese, dijon mustard, milk, salt, pepper, onion powder
In a deep sauce pan, I bring 1 and 1/2 of the jarred tomato sauce (OF YOUR CHOICE!) to a simmer over medium heat on the stove. While the tomato sauce is coming to a simmer, I beat two eggs in a mixing bowl and continue to add 1 tB. dijon mustard, 2 tB. chopped garlic, 2 tB. milk, 1 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. pepper, 1 tsp. onion pepper and 3/4 cup of parmesan cheese. After this is well mixed, I add the ground turkey and turkey sausage and mix until incorporated – being careful not to OVER MIX once you add to the meat.
For the Italian turkey sausage, I go to Whole Foods and by the fresh un-cased sausage, but if you can only find turkey sausage links at your grocery store, it’s very simple to remove the casing on your own. I choose to use the turkey sausage because historically I have made this recipe with 1 lb. of turkey and and 1 lb. of pork and I while I love the flavor of the pork, I think the use of a highly seasoned turkey sausage creates an even better tasting meatball without using pork products. *** You will note there are no bread crumbs in this recipe, only a TON of parmesan cheese instead, which is how I roll 🙂
Once your sauce is at a simmer, I use a small spoon and form the meatballs into about 1″ thick rounds with my hands and drop them directly into the sauce. I used to broil my meatballs and then finish them in the sauce so the meatballs would get a crunchy exterior, but I have found that I enjoy the meatballs better when they are soft throughout. HOWEVER, sometimes, I like to use this exact same recipe and BROIL the meatballs entirely – about 8 minutes on each side – and then toss the crunchier meatballs in my favorite favorite Siete Spicy Cashew Queso and serve with roasted cabbage, fennel and/or cauliflower.