simple warm dinner


photo copy 4Alright people, life is not always fancy and sometimes you just want to tuck in with a big bowl of pasta. Husband requested fish tonight. When at the market thought no freaking way, it’s in the single digits out there and I don’t think I can look at or prepare a piece of cold stinking fish (only kidding), these days in the single digits can get to you.

Fell back to the Braised Turkey Meatballs with Quick Tomato Sauce that I picked up from Chuck and one of his recipes in the Williams-Sonoma catalog. This works every time and is adaptable to all situations. Doubled it, added 1/2 cup ground organic beef, used fire roasted tomatoes instead of San Marzano, dried sage tonight instead of fresh, they were all out and there was no way I was going to any other market to secure the fresh stuff.

Photo taken with the iPhone, and, truth be told, violated all principles of every day dress: worked at home all darn day and did a little run-around. Never showered until dinner, never dressed until dinner, and never put on lipstick until dinner. Life happens all around us.

Recipe below is really good: (photo and recipe courtesy Williams-Sonoma). Totally adaptable, flexibility counts.


Braised Turkey Meatballs with Quick Tomato Sauce

3 Tbs. plus 1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 yellow onion, grated

1/2 large carrot, peeled and grated

Kosher salt, to taste, plus tsp.

1 lb. ground turkey

1 1/2 cups fresh bread crumbs

1 egg, whisked

2 tsp. chopped fresh sage

1/2 tsp. ground pepper, plus more to taste

2 cans (each 28oz.) whole San Marzano tomatoes, with juices

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 tsp. dried oregano

Grated Parmigiano-Reggaino for serving

In large saute pan over medium-high heat, warm 1 Tbs. oil. Add onion and carrot, and a few pinches of salt; cook, stirring, 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl, let cool. Add ground turkey, bread crumbs, egg, sage, t tsp. alt and 1/2 tsp. pepper, gently mix well with hands.  From into 12 meatballs. In same sauce pan over medium-high heat, warm 2 Tbs. oil. Brown meatballs 1 minute per side. Transfer to plate.

Put tomatoes and juices in food processor. While pulsing, slowly stream in 1/4 cup oil through feed tube until tomatoes are pureed but still a bit chunky. Stir in garlic and oregano, season with salt and pepper. Pour tomato sauce into same pan, warm over medium heat. Add meatballs. Cover, reduce heat to low. Simmer until meatballs are cooked through, about 3o minutes. Divide meatballs and sauce among individual bowls. Sprinkle with cheese. Serves 4. Or 8, if you double, which I always do.

Tonight I added pan sautéed local chicken sausage, 6 links, cooked, then cut in half. Gave it a nice kick.




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