Spaghetti with Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs
Updated: Aug 19
Noel has been off work for the last couple of weeks due to the COVID-19 ISO restrictions here in Melbourne (whereas I am still working) but so he's in charge of dinner for a while - we are still menu planning but he has all day to prep it and get it ready. And I must say , he is doing a brilliant job at it also. Thankfully both of us love cooking so it really isn't a challenge. On the menu planner tonight was Spaghetti with Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs.
Pasta is definitely a comfort food especially on a drizzly winter's night - who am I kidding? Pasta is a comfort food at anytime. Right? Both Noel and I prefer a tomato based sauce whereas the kids prefer pasta with a creamy based sauce such as a Carbonara. What's your favourite pasta dish? We'd love to hear.
Both of us really enjoy a nice Spaghetti Bolognaise, Lasagne, and of course good old Spaghetti and Meatballs. Every time we have Spaghetti and Meatballs it always takes me back to being a child watching the epic movie Lady And The Tramp and the scene in the alley with them sharing a big bowl of Spaghetti and Meatballs. And then all of a sudden, he two canine lovers, distracted by a romantic serenade, ended up chewing opposite ends of the same piece of spaghetti and accidentally nibbled their way into that famous "Spaghetti Kiss".
I must say that there wasn't a romantic serenade last night nor a spaghetti kiss but we were definitely treated to the same comforting meal as was shared by these lovebirds. The dish itself was wonderful. Full of the bold Italian flavour of fresh basil encased in the velvety tomato sauce, the meatballs filled with mozzeralla were melt in your mouth - the whole dish made my taste buds dance.
This recipe is from one of Weight Watchers new cookbooks, Comfort Cooking, which is jam packed with some fantastic recipes.. many of which will be made that is for sure. Our copy already has sticky notes on recipe pages that the family would like to try which is always a good sign and even handier for when we menu plan. (You can buy these cookbooks at Coles or a newsagent).
Fun facts (thanks to Wikipedia) about this dish - spaghetti with meatballs is an Italian-American dish consisting of spaghetti, tomato sauce and meatballs. Spaghetti and meatballs was an innovation of Italian immigrants in New York City, who had access to a more plentiful meat supply than in Italy.
In 1888, Juliet Corson of New York published a recipe for pasta with meatballs and tomato sauce.
In 1909 a recipe for "Beef Balls with Spaghetti" appeared in American Cookery, Volume 13.
The National Pasta Association (originally named the National Macaroni Manufacturers Association) published a recipe for spaghetti with meatballs in the 1920s.
In 1931 Venice Maid in New Jersey was selling canned "spaghetti with meatballs in sauce".
In 1938 the exact phrase "spaghetti and meatballs" appeared in a list of canned foods produced by Ettore Boiardi, later known as Chef Boyardee, in Milton, Pennsylvania.
Now in case you have any left over this recipe is suitable to freeze however the meatballs and sauce without the pasta are absolutely delicious. are are equally yummy on a nice fresh bread roll for lunch. (Sorry to give you ideas lol!) If you love Spaghetti Bolognaise or even normal Spaghetti with Meatballs, I am sure that you and your family will love this meal just like we did.
Spaghetti with Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs
(recipe sourced from ww Comfort Cooking)
💚 9 sp per serve
💙 9 sp per serve
💜 5 sp per serve
750 grams extra lean beef mince
25 grams dried gluten free breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons skim milk
4 garlic cloves, crushed
1/4 cup grated Parmesan plus 2 tablespoons extra
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil plus 2 tablespoons extra
50 grams mozzarella (cut into 18 x 1 cm cubes)
2 cups passata
400 gram can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup water
freshly ground black pepper
240 grams gluten free spaghetti (or pasta of your choice)
Combine beef, breadcrumbs, milk, egg, half the garlic, Parmesan and basil in a large bowl. Mix well.
Shape 50 gram amounts of beef mixture into 18 meatballs. Transfer meatballs to a dish in a single layer. Refrigerate for 15 minutes.
Heat a large non stick flameproof casserole dish over high heat. Add remaining garlic and cook for 20 seconds.
Add passata, tomatoes and water and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Add meatballs and bring to a simmer. Cover, simmer over low heat, stirring gently a few times, for 10 minutes or until meatballs are cooked through.
Meanwhile, cook spaghetti following package instructions. Drain.
Place pasta in a large bowl and covers with meatballs and sauce. Serve with extra Parmesan and Basil.