Meatballs with Spaghetti and Fresh Tomato Sauce
The Americans invented meatballs to go with spaghetti, and there are lots of ground rules, but the main criteria for any meatball is that it should have a kind of melt-in-the-mouth lightness and not be heavy and bouncy. These, I think, are just right.
This recipe is from Delia's Complete How to Cook. Serves 4 (makes 24 meatballs)
To make the meatballs, all you do is place all the ingredients into the bowl of a food processor and blend everything on a low speed until thoroughly blended. If you don't have a processor, chop everything as finely as possible with a sharp knife and blend it with a fork. Now take walnut-sized pieces of the mixture and shape them into rounds – you should end up with 24 meatballs. Then put them in a large dish or on a tray, cover with clingfilm and chill for about 30 minutes to firm up.
Meanwhile, pre-heat the oven to a low setting. Then, when you are ready to cook the meatballs, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large frying pan and, over a fairly high heat, add 12 meatballs at a time and cook them until they are crispy and brown all over, adding a little more oil as necessary. This will take 4-5 minutes per batch, so as they are cooked, remove them to a plate and keep them warm, covered with foil, in the oven.
Meanwhile, cook the pasta (see _How to cook perfect pasta_, below) and gently warm the tomato sauce. Then drain the pasta, return it to the pan and toss in the tomato sauce, quickly mix well and then pile it on to plates. Top with the meatballs, sprinkle with some freshly grated Parmesan and finish with a few basil leaves.