Meatballs in a Basil Tomato Sauce

  • Cooking time: 1.5 hrs
  • Serves: 4-6
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 500 g diced mushrooms
  • 300 g beef mince
  • 300 g pork mince
  • 1/2 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • salt
  • black pepper

Basil Tomato sauce
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 x 400g can whole peeled tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup basil leaves, torn plus extra to garnish
  • 1/2 tablespoon chili flakes
  • 1 tablespoon of brown sugar

  • finely grated parmesan to serve

To prepare the meatballs; heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Add the onion, cook for 1-2 minutes or until softened. Stir through the mushrooms. Cook for 5-7 minutes until softened and the liquid from the mushrooms has evaporated. Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Set aside to cool.

Add the beef and pork mince, parmesan, breadcrumbs and egg to the mushroom mix. Season with salt and pepper. Using clean hands massage the mix together well. Roll into approx. 50 g meatballs. Place onto a tray and into the fridge to firm up for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile; prepare the tomato sauce. Add 2 tablespoons of oil to a large pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes until softened. Add the tomatoes, water, basil, chili and sugar to the pan. Break up the tomatoes with a wooden spoon. Bring to the boil, reduce to a simmer and cover with a lid. Cook for 15 minutes. Remove the lid and cook for a further 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Heat the remaining oil in large non-stick frypan over a medium heat. Cook for 8-10 minutes, moving the meatballs around in the pan to brown evenly. Transfer the meatballs to the tomato sauce and cook for further 10 minutes.

Sprinkle with the parmesan and top with the extra basil leaves.

Serve with crusty bread.