Sicilian meatballs and pasta sauce

Sicilian meatballs and pasta sauce


28 people made this

About this recipe: Mamma Mía! Beef brisket and Pecorino cheese meatballs simmered in a rich sausage, brisket, red wine and tomato sauce with layers of flavour added by pork neck bones, spices and herbs. Make with robust red wine and serve over your favourite cooked pasta. Makes a wonderful pizza sauce, as well! A Sicilian family secret is out with this recipe - so manga (and sshhh)!


Serves: 24 

  • Meatballs
  • 450g beef brisket, chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 slices white bread
  • 4 tablespoons grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 1 pinch dried parsley
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Sauce
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 onions, chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1.1kg Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 675g cubed beef brisket
  • 225g pork neck bones
  • 675g tomato purée
  • 2.3kg passata
  • 120ml red wine
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1.3kg dry pasta

Prep:45min  ›  Cook:4hr  ›  Ready in:4hr45min 

    To make meatballs:

  1. In a medium bowl combine chopped brisket, eggs, bread, Pecorino Romano cheese, parsley and salt and pepper to taste. Form meatballs; place into freezer to firm up.
  2. To make sauce:

  3. In a large frying pan over medium heat, brown cubed brisket and pork neck bones; reserve.
  4. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Sauté onion and garlic; fry sausage.
  5. Turn heat down to low. Add tomato purée; stir and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the browned cubed brisket and pork, crushed tomatoes, red wine, bay leaves, cinnamon, parsley, basil and salt and pepper to taste; stir.
  6. In a large frying pan over medium heat, brown meatballs; reserve.
  7. Simmer sauce over low heat for 3 to 4 hours. Add meatballs and simmer for 1 hour. Remove neck bones.
  8. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of lightly salted water to the boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain. Cover pasta with sauce and meatballs, serve.

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