Saturday, January 8, 2011

Turkey Meatballs with Tomato Sauce and Whole Wheat Spaghetti

Okay, so for my first recipe that I will be sharing are my Turkey Meatballs with Tomato Sauce and Whole Wheat Spaghetti. I know that the new year just began, and like the rest of the world, I'm trying to watch what I'm eating. So typically meatballs can be beef, pork, and veal, but I opted to make turkey to save a few calories (you could also do ground chicken). This is probably one of Clayton's favorite weight-watching meals, and let me tell you, he can eat! Also, I chose to serve my meatballs with whole wheat spaghetti because honestly when it's covered with meatballs and sauce, who can tell the difference?!? I hope you like the recipe, and of course you can add more spice, salt, or sweetness to your liking!

Turkey Meatballs with Tomato Sauce and Whole Wheat Spaghetti

For the Sauce:
1 Can of Classico Traditional Sweet Basil Tomato Sauce
1/2 Onion, Chopped
3T Garlic, Chopped
1T Balsamic Vinegar
1/4C Red Wine
2T Pesto
1/4t Oregano, Dried
1t Red Pepper Flakes
1/2t Garlic Powder
1/2t Onion Powder
1T Fresh Basil, Chopped
Salt & Pepper, to taste
Olive Oil

For the Meatballs:
1.5lbs Ground Turkey
1/2 Onion, Chopped, Cooked, and Cooled
2T Garlic, Chopped, Cooked, and Cooled
1/2C Italian Bread Crumbs
1/4C Parmesan Cheese, Grated
1 Egg
1/4C Milk
2T Pesto
1/2t Red Pepper Flakes
1/2t Garlic Powder
1/4t Onion Powder
1/4t Oregano, Dried
1/4t Paprika
Salt & Pepper, to taste
Olive Oil

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with tin foil and spray with Pam.
2. The Sauce: Drizzle some EVOO in a pot and bring up to heat. Add the chopped onion and sautee until caramelized and tender, then add in the chopped garlic and heat through, making sure not to burn it. Next, pour in the can of tomato sauce, red wine, and balsamic vinegar and bring up to a slight boil and then return to a simmer for about 10 minutes. Next stir in the pesto, oregano, red pepper flakes, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Simmer for another 10 minutes on low. Lastly add in fresh, chopped basil. Keep cooking on low until meatballs are cooked.
3. The Meatballs: Drizzle some EVOO in a pan and sautee the chopped onions and garlic until cooked and tender, do not burn. Pour into a mixing bowl and let cool. After cooled, add ground turkey, breadcrumbs, milk, egg, cheese, pesto and seasonings. Mix together, but don't over mix because it can make the meatballs tough and dried out. Once incorporated, shape into 12 meatballs (roughly the size of a golf ball, but can also be changed to smaller or larger).
4. Bake: Place the meatballs on the greased baking sheet and bake at 350 for 35 minutes, flipping the meatballs halfway through for even cooking. Once cooked, place the meatballs in the sauce and let simmer until you're ready to serve.
5. Boil: Boil the pasta in salted water according to the back of the box or until tender.
6. Serve: Toss the pasta in tomato sauce and top with meatballs. Garnish with some grated parmesan, fresh basil, or chopped parsley (or anything to your liking) and enjoy.

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