Wednesday, October 17, 2012
I used David Lebovitz's recipe for meatballs, but used a recipe for tomato sauce with butter and onions instead (using two 24 oz cans of tomatoes). These made tasty meatballs, but they were much drier than meatballs in the past that I've made--they didn't release any oil when I baked them. This could be because I used a mixture that was half ground sirloin and half ground pork. However the rich tomato sauce made them moist enough, and they tasted great in a sandwich. Next time I might try a mixture of ground chuck and ground pork, just to see what the difference is.
I used half-and-half instead of milk since that's what I had around.
I made this recipe because I love meatball sandwiches and David Lebovitz pointed out that this is a great meal to freeze in individual portions, so that you can defrost a quick meal later. This recipe makes a very large batch of meatballs. It is time consuming to make so many meatballs (and they had to be baked in multiple batches), so if I would make a smaller batch if I want to prepare this dish more quickly.
I froze the extra in several containers. So next time I need a quick meal, all I need to do is turn the oven on as high as it will go (thus the "quick cooking" label). Defrost the meatballs on the stove top while the oven is heating. When the oven is hot, put the meatballs in the oven for 5 - 10 minutes until they are hot all the way through. Cut a length of french bread off the loaf, and cut it lengthwise most of the way through. Then use a spoon to spread tomato sauce on both cut sides of inside of the bread. Cut the meatballs in half, and put as many halves inside the sandwich that will fit. Use a fork to press the meatballs into the bread, so that they meld slightly with the bread. Top with another spoonful or two of tomato sauce, and a thin slice of fresh mozzarella cheese (a thin slice is better than a thick slice, since a thick slice will be clumpy). Put the assembled sandwich in the oven for about 5 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and the edges are just slightly brown. Watch carefully so that you don't burn the bread.