Juicy Meatballs 🤌🤌
Upgrade your weeknight pasta game with divine toothsome pappardelle and our homemade anything-but-bland meatballs. Bright and punchy, this one dish dinner appeals to both the pickiest and snootiest of palates. Get the big bowls out!
Prep Time: 30 min
Cook Time: 25 min
*Your Chef will lead you through all the techniques, so prepping ahead of class is optional
Ingredients for the pasta:
- 2 ¼ cups (10 ½ ounces) whole wheat flour, plus extra for dusting
- 4 large eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
Ingredients for the Arrabbiata Sauce:
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon no salt added tomato paste
- 2 – 28 ounce cans low sodium crushed tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (more if you like it spicier)
- 1/3 cup dry red wine
- 1/4 cup plain yogurt
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt, more to taste
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup julienned fresh basil leaves, for serving
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese, for serving
Ingredients for the Meatballs:
- 1/2 cup Italian-style breadcrumbs
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1 large egg, beaten well
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley leaves, finely chopped
- 8 sprigs fresh thyme, destemmed and finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 medium yellow onion, finely chopped or grated on the large holes of a box grater
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 pound 80/20 ground beef
- To make the pasta dough: Place the flour in a mound on a large cutting board. Use your fingers or a spoon to create a good-sized well in the middle of the mound (kind of like a wide volcano). Add the eggs in the center of the well, sprinkle in the salt and drizzle the olive oil on top of the eggs.
- Use a fork to begin whisking the eggs until they are combined, then begin to gradually whisk some of the surrounding flour into the egg mixture, adding more and more until the egg mixture is nice and thick. If some eggs accidentally spill out, no worries, just use your hands or a bench scraper to pull them back in.
- Use your hands to fold in the rest of the dough until it forms a loose ball. Knead the dough for about 10 minutes or until it is smooth and elastic and springs back when pressed.
- Form the dough into a ball with your hands and wrap it tightly in plastic wrap. Let the dough rest at room temperature for 30 minutes. Use immediately or refrigerate for up to 1 day.
- To make the sauce: Place a large, deep sauté pan or medium Dutch oven over medium low heat and pour in the olive oil. Once the oil is shimmering slightly add the garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 to 3 minutes or until very fragrant. Stir in the tomato paste and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes until the tomato paste has darkened in color to a brick red.
- Pour the crushed tomato in the pan along with the red pepper flakes, wine, salt and pepper, stirring to combine. Turn the heat up to medium high to bring the sauce to a heavy simmer then reduce it to low. Cook the sauce covered, at a very light simmer, for 20 to 30 minutes until it has thickened slightly and darkened in color. Remove from the heat and stir in the yogurt until it’s well-mixed. Taste and season with more salt and pepper as desired.
- To make the meatballs: Mix the breadcrumbs, milk and parmesan cheese together in a medium mixing bowl and allow it to sit while preparing everything else for the meatballs.
- In a separate mixing bowl stir the egg, parsley, thyme, oregano, salt and pepper together until evenly combined. Mix in the ground beef and, once everything is mixed, add the onions, garlic and soaked breadcrumbs, working the mixture again with your hands until everything is just evenly distributed (don’t overmix!).
- Preheat the oven to 425°F and line a rimmed sheet tray with parchment paper or foil. Using about two tablespoons at a time, lightly roll the meat mixture between your hands until it comes together in a uniform ball and place on the prepared tray. Repeat, leaving space between each meatball on the tray, until all the mixture is used (approximately 24 meatballs).
- Roast the meatballs for 20 to 25 minutes or until the outside is dark brown and the center is cooked (165°F). Alternatively, you can simmer the meatballs in the arrabiata sauce* until ready to serve.
- To make the pappardelle: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
- Divide the pasta dough into 4 pieces. Working with one piece at a time (keep the others covered so they don’t dry out), use a rolling pin or pasta machine to roll the dough into a rectangle that is approximately 1 millimeter thick. Use a fluted pastry cutter, pizza cutter or sharp knife to cut the pasta into 1 inch wide strips that are 8 to 10 inches long. Lightly toss the cut pasta on a sheet tray of semolina or all-purpose flour to keep them from sticking together while rolling and cutting the rest of the dough.
- Once all of the pasta is cut drop it into the boiling water and cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until the pasta is just tender. Use tongs, a spider or a slotted spoon to remove the pasta and transfer to the pan of sauce, tossing to coat. Cook the pasta for another 1 to 2 minutes in the sauce, thinning the sauce out with a bit of the pasta cooking water if needed. Divide the pasta among 4 serving bowls and serve with the roasted meatballs, garnishing with fresh basil and parmesan.
*If you are simmering the meatballs in the sauce, wait until you are ready to serve to stir in the yogurt so that the sauce doesn’t break.