Confession: Before I made this meal, I had never, ever, in my life, made a meatball. I've enjoyed many a meatball, but I've always been a bit apprehensive of making them. It seemed overwhelming to try and keep the meat together, in ball form, appropriately seasoned and evenly cooked. But I found out how wrong I've been, and how easy they are to make. Best part about meatballs? As long as you have fresh ground turkey and a fairly well-stocked pantry, you have all the ingredients necessary. And these recipes seem to be pretty flexible!
Total Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Cook Time: 30 minutes
What you will need:
1 lb ground turkey meat (I used 43% lean since my grocery store does not have 93%, but use whatever mix you prefer)
2 tbsp bread crumbs (I used Italian, but you could use whatever you have on hand, including panko!)
1 tsp italian seasonings
1 1/2 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp cumin
salt, pepper and red pepper flakes to taste
1/2 bunch minced fresh parsley (only if you happen to have fresh herbs on hand)
(not pictured: my favorite jar of publix marinara sauce. Use whatever you have on hand).
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
In a large mixing bowl, put your ground meat, and add all dry ingredients. Also add egg, garlic and mustard.
Here comes the fun part. Mix all of this together, well. I tried doing it with a spoon. It didn't work. So I got my hands all up in there. Fact: my refrigerator keeps meat very, very cold.
In an ovenproof casserole dish (sprayed with Pam), place rolled meatballs which are approximately 1-1.5 inches in diameter. Roll the meatballs with the palm of your hand rather than fingertips; I find they bind up a bit better that way.
Bake the meatballs at 400, uncovered, for approximately 15 minutes.
Remove from the oven, and put a non-stick skillet on medium heat on the stove. Place the meatballs (taken out of the casserole dish with a slotted spoon so as to essentially drain them of the fat they've rendered) in the skillet and in a few minutes you will hear them begin to sizzle. Make sure you place them with the browned sides up; essentially, what we are doing here is browning the other sides of the meatballs.
Let the meatballs cook for approximately five minutes, then dump your jar of sauce over them. This is where I really wish that I had a Le Crueset dutch oven, because what I'd really love to do is brown these little suckers in the Le Crueset, pour my sauce in, and then pop it back in the oven...we'll see whether my dreams are recognized from my wedding registry.
Let the meatballs simmer on low heat for approximately ten minutes, then serve and enjoy! These are pretty good on their own (and don't create too much sauce) if you're trying to be low-carb; otherwise, you can serve these with spaghetti for your traditional spaghetti and meatball, or probably could even make meatball subs if you had baguettes and some provolone to melt. Either way...very delicious and easy!