Meatballs with Tomato Sauce

Meatballs Fae's Twist & Tango

If you are looking for  juicy, succulent meatballs for your pasta dishes, or  as a meat  accompaniment, these meatballs will delight you.

Meatballs with Tomato Sauce

  • Servings: 4~5
  • Time: 1hr 30 mins
  • Difficulty: Moderate
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Recipe by:   Fae’s Twist & Tango  (
Meatballs Fae's Twist & Tango

•   2 tsp vegetable oil
•   140 gr/5 oz onion, parallel cut
•   14 gr/0.5 oz/3 cloves  garlic, finely minced/grated
•   600 gr/21 oz/6 medium tomatoes, de-seeded, diced small
•   1 tsp tomato paste
•   1  bay leaf
•   1/2 tsp salt
•   1/4 tsp ground black pepper   -or-  1/2 tsp hot pepper paste -or- both!
•   smidgen of dried herbs of choice, i.e. oregano, thyme, basil -or- Italian mixed herbs (optional)
•   3/4 cup low-sodium broth,  beef  or  chicken

For the meatballs
•   454 gr/1 lb lean ground beef
•   140 gr/5 oz  onion, extra-finely diced
•   14 gr/0.5 oz/3 cloves  garlic, finely minced/grated
•   35 gr/3 Tbsp Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
•   2 eggs  beaten with fork in a small bowl
•   1/4 tsp turmeric
•   1/8 tsp nutmeg
•   1/2 tsp salt
•   1/4 tsp ground black pepper

Options for pasta:

•   1 sprig of basil  or 2~3 Tbsp of chopped parsley to sprinkle/garnish on the top
•   grated/ground Parmesan cheese to serve on the side


◊  Sauce: In a large pot, heat oil on medium, add onion and sautée until golden brown.  Add garlic and stir for 30 seconds.  Add tomatoes, tomato paste, bay leaf, salt, pepper,  (hot pepper paste, dried herbs) and broth. Stir and bring to a boil.  Lower heat to medium-low and simmer for 3  minutes.  Turn off heat.

◊  Meatballs:  In a large bowl, combine all ingredients for meatballs.  Knead briefly until ingredients are mixed. Make  4cm/1.5″ diameter balls, rolling tightly between your hands  (makes about 14). Place them in the pot with the sauce, in one layer.  Turn heat to medium. As soon as sauce starts boiling, turn heat down to medium-low and simmer for 1 hour. Do not stir or turn the meatballs over. Periodically, check to make sure the liquid has not dried up. If needed, add some hot water.  Dish out and serve!

◊  If served with pasta: For this recipe amount, bring a pot of water to a rapid boil. If desired, add 2 tsp salt. Gradually add 300 gr/10 oz spaghetti/pasta. Cook uncovered, stirring occasionally for 9~11 minutes or until desired degree of softness is reached. Drain well and place on  serving dish, arrange meatballs on pasta and pour sauce over. Garnish with basil sprig, sprinkle with chopped parsley and/or Parmesan and serve!

~    Buon Appetito!    ~

Meatballs Fae's Twist & Tango

So, what’s cooking in your kitchen?





  1. says

    I made this for friends last night. Where I live there is no turmeric (I know, awful right?), or nutmeg. I used five spice and cumin instead, and added red wine to the sauce. It was very good, thanks for a simple but tasty recipe!

    • says

      Usually, I make my meatballs differently too. I saw this recipe (poaching style) some time ago, and adapted with (Persians preferred) spices to make it more interesting. The result, very flavorful, juicy meatballs! 😀 )))

  2. says

    Oh Fae, that looks fantastic. Coming from an Italian, trust me when I say that this dish looks incredibly delicious. Wish I could have that very plate sitting on my lap right now as I watch the Olympics! :-)

  3. says

    Beautiful, Fae. Such classic flavors and lovely technique – with your own “twist and tango” or spin on the recipe with the turmeric. Now, where is the saffron? :-) Do you think a little diced celery would be nice in a sauce, almost like a bolognese? Your photos look gorgeous – paired with the ingredients, I am now hungry… and I just finished a hearty lunch. Take good care!

  4. says

    Oh my goodness. It’s lunch time around here and I should have known better than to come over here because now I’m just drooling and wanting some of this pasta and yummy meatballs. Perfect for a shekamoo like me! It’s fab, Fae!

  5. says

    Oh Fae, may I express the desire to have this dish today for my lunch??? it looks great, I’m going to prepare meatballs this saturday, I’ll put the turmeric, exactly you did! Thank for sharing!

  6. says

    Oh yum! What a gorgeous post Fae. I’ve had a bit of a craving for meatballs recently, not sure why… it’s been ages since I’ve made them. I do think that I need to try your version! Love the picture too x

  7. says

    Poaching the meatballs in sauce as you have guarantees they are tender, I love that, THE best! Spaghetti with meatballs are on this week’s menu! Thanks for the inspiration

  8. says

    This looks great Fae! When I was little, my family used to live in Martinez, California, and my mom had the same exact cutlery set! Seeing the spoon and fork you used in the pictures brought me back to my childhood :)

    • says

      It’s a Persian thing, turmeric in everything! As you know, not only turmeric has many, many health qualities, but also it is being used for eliminating meat odor, giving delectable color and add subtle pleasing taste. Sometimes called poor man’s saffron. 😀 )))

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