Recipe: Pork and fennel meatballs

By Grant Allen

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Pork and fennel meatballs. Photo / Michael Craig
Pork and fennel meatballs. Photo / Michael Craig

Ingredients

• 1.5 kg pork mince
• 2 eggs
• 150g breadcrumbs (2-3-day old white rustic style, blitzed)
• 150 ml lukewarm milk (to moisten)
• 20g fennel seeds, lightly toasted and pounded in a mortar
• 1 cup pecorino romano cheese, freshly grated
• 1 tsp chilli flakes
• Salt and pepper to taste


Tomato sauce

1. Soften some chopped red onion and garlic very gently in olive oil.

2. Add a heap of whole cherry tomatoes, or whatever tomatoes are on hand, chopped into evenly sized pieces.

3. Sprinkle in white sugar and salt.

4. Dab a little tomato paste over each tomato. Cook on stove top on very low heat, cover if necessary for a while.


Meatballs

1. Soften breadcrumbs in half the milk.

2. Put all other ingredients in a large bowl and then add the breadcrumbs and milk. Combine gently with hands. Add reserved milk if necessary. The mixture should be quite moist.

3. Shape into walnut-sized balls and bake on a greased tray in a 220C oven for 10 minutes until starting to brown.

4. Remove and poach in tomato sauce for another 10-20 minutes on a very low heat on the stovetop in a pot with the lid off. Take off the heat when the sauce has reached your desired consistency.

Add a few torn basil leaves. Serve with some good quality bread, either home-made or from a bakery.

- Herald on Sunday

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