#OneYrGreek ~ Greek Meatballs in Tomato Sauce
I was invited by BenBella Books to join the blog tour for the One Year Anniversary of "It's All Greek To Me" which is a WONDERFUL recipe book filled with amazing authentic Greek dishes you can recreate in your own home along with beautiful photography and wonderful stories shared by the author, Debbie Matenopoulos. (My thanks to Cam at Culinary Adventures with Camilla for connecting me with this blog tour!)
Of the lovely selection of recipes offered to me, I chose to recreate Debbie's "Greek Meatballs in Tomato Sauce". Although Greek food is not something that we cook often in our home, it is a style of food that I always enjoy when I do get the chance to eat it, and I was so excited to try this recipe out and share it with my family.
With just a few simple ingredients, this recipe comes together quickly and easily and the results were absolutely wonderful. I couldn't get over how such a short list of seasonings resulted in such flavorful and tender meatballs. The sauce and meatballs work so well together, and the cumin and pepper give a fantastic bite of flavor without being overpowering.
Debbie recommends serving this dish over Pilafi, another recipe in her book, and so I made that to serve alongside and oh my goodness. What a delightful rice dish! Perfectly seasoned, and the vegetables add a nice additional element of flavor and texture (my son was coveting the entire pot of rice when it came out of the oven and we taste tested)! It was a wonderful bed to serve these meatballs over (or alongside if you prefer).
|Photo Source: BenBella Books|
Soutzoukakia (soo-zoo-KAH-kee-uh) or Greek Meatballs in Tomato Sauce from It's All Greek To Me
For the Sauce:
2 TBS extra-virgin olive oil
5 ripe medium tomatoes, seeded and diced
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
For the Meatballs:
1 to 1 1/2 cups day old bread, crusts removed, cubed
1 1/2 lbs ground beef
3 tsp minced garlic
1/4 tsp ground cumin
3/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
For the sauce:
- Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large pot or Dutch oven. Add the tomatoes, cumin, salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat, stirring every so often until the tomatoes break down, about 5 - 7 minutes. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 - 20 minutes, or until the sauce has slightly thickened.
For the meatballs:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly oil a 9x13 baking dish.
- Soak the bread briefly in a bowl of water, just to wet all the way through. Squeeze the water from the bread, and transfer bread to a large mixing bowl. Use clean hands to gently mix remaining meatball ingredients together until thoroughly combined.
- Roll the meat mixture into little sausage shapes, about 2 inches long. Carefully arrange the meatballs in the prepared baking dish, in an even layer. Bake for 35 minutes.
- Remove the meatballs from the oven. Carefully move them to the tomato sauce, being careful not to break them. Gently stir to coat the meatballs with the sauce and cook for 5 minutes over low heat before serving over Pilafi.
*Full Disclosure: I received complimentary product from BenBella Books for the purpose of review and recipe testing. I received no compensation for this post. All comments are 100% accurate and 100% my own.