KAW - spaghetti sauce and meatballs!

williamsemNovember 10, 2013

Even with my counter next to the Advantium currently taken over by the stenciling project for the bathroom, I still have room to make homemade sauce and meatballs! So excited!

It's been several years since I made this myself, so I'm hoping for the best. I so wish grandma was still here to double check with, it's her recipe.

I will post after the meatballs are cooked, but in my experience a good deal of them go missing in between...

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magsnj

Oh YUM!!!! I need to put that on my to do list for when my kitchens complete!!

    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 5:20PM
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williamsem

A bunch made it to the sauce to soften up and add flavor, and I only lost the quality control samples this time, lol! So strange not to have my Dad and sister eating them almost as fast as I can cook the first dozen or so! I'll have to put a bag full aside to drop off to him.

So far, yummy! The sauce tastes great, the meatballs are great, and I have a loaf of the best local Italian bread on standby. I hope DH gets home soon so we can dig in!

    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 5:33PM
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oldbat2be

They sound great and look even better, on that gorgeous granite of yours! (Isn't it fun to take pictures with a bold backdrop?) If you feel up to posting the meatball recipe...

Where is your Dad BTW? I'm so used to you referencing him, I'd sort of assumed he lived with you :) Bon Appetit and keep the KAW pictures a-coming!

    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 7:59PM
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Linelle

williamsem, that first picture is so glowy and inviting. Your counters really are awesome.

So, are you going to give us your recipe?!! :) Do you slow cook them in sauce after you brown the meatballs? I bought a new Crockpot (thanks Costco!) and would love to break it in with something like this.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 8:14PM
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Mgoblue85

Delish! I haven't had homemade spaghetti and meatballs in forever. My mother use to make them occasionally so I can totally relate to how they go missing. Hopefully your DH gets home soon...

    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 8:23PM
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cookncarpenter

Had to chuckle at the missing meatball comment....raised two boys, and for some reason, by the time dinner was ready everyone ended up with one meatball each ;)

    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 8:29PM
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williamsem

For now Dad lives about 10-15 minutes from me depending on traffic. I'm very lucky that both my parents live pretty close, and both are handy enough to be tech support or supervise when I attempt projects. Dad is my partner in grime on the fireplace remodel. He was kind enough to drive to NJ with me on the spur of the moment to get the mantel from Green Demolitions, and he had so much fun teaching me how to build the hearth that I decided it would be "our" project. By this time next year he will be retired and living many states away near my stepsister and the only grandbabies in the family :-(

I don't really have a recipe, per se, just what I learned from my maternal grandmother by watching and cooking with her. The key is wetting the breadcrumbs and using more black pepper than you think is sane :-)

Today it was:
2 lbs 85/15 ground beef
About the same volume, or a little less, of moistened breadcrumbs, regular seasoned (or Italian seasoned)
2 eggs
Parsley flakes, probably a bit shy of 1/4 cup
Generous dusting of garlic salt
More black pepper than you think is needed (probably 3 tbsp?)

That made about 3o-36-ish balls today. Roll to shape, pan fry in olive oil browning on 3-4 sides as needed.

I'm finding that everything is better on the granite, lol! It's not a snobby granite thing, more like a working on something that I love thing (I'm sure it would be just as fun working on laminate or even painted plywood that I picked out myself). Between the granite and the Orca, I don't even mind cleanup as much. And the best part of all is my 27x24 prep space, it really does feel like a football field compared to the effectively 18x12 space we had there. Still shy of the recommended space, but it's downright luxurious to us!

    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 8:36PM
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KimSig

I am sooo envious right now! Those meatballs look delicious! We are about 5 weeks now without a kitchen and I find myself craving baked and fried foods. I don't know which is more beautiful, your granite or your backsplash.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 8:47PM
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williamsem

Thanks, linelle, I really love how the kitchen, and especially the lighting, came out. That nice look is due in part to the magic of dimmers. Plus the wisdom of the lighting forum, most notably David, who patiently answered the questions I had and gave me confidence that the plan I had created was fine. Recipe above :-)

I deviate from grandma in the sauce, she always simmered it all day on the stove. Sometimes from tomato sauce make with tomatoes grown in the garden then cooked and processed with the hand crank strainer, then frozen.

I use a mix of canned tomato products. I couldn't remember which three products she used when I was in the store, so I used 28 oz each of crushed tomatoes, tomato purée, tomato sauce, and petite diced tomatoes. I'm pretty sure just the first three are the original recipe.

Then add:
3 large cloves pressed garlic
Generous palmful of parsley flakes
Maybe a tbsp each Italian seasoning, oregano, basil (not entirely sure how much to start, it's all by feel when I do it)
Generous sprinkling of each black pepper, garlic salt, and garlic powder
1 small can tomato paste

Put on medium for 6 hours or so. Stir and taste every 2 hours and adjust seasoning if needed. Add meatballs and sausage 1-2 hours before serving if desired, the meatballs will make a good amount of sauce disappear if they are in there too long, though they will taste good!

    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 9:02PM
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williamsem

Thanks, KimSig! I definitely can relate! We had a toaster oven that we used a lot, and a rice cooker, but I was so sick of grilled everything by the time we could use the range again I declared no grilled items for a month.

While I love the whole kitchen, and I -swear- there is a reveal coming eventually, I think the granite is my absolute favorite thing among the tangible items. I could stare at it for hours. It's called Rocky Mountain, and the backsplash is MOP.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 9:11PM
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scootermom

Your dinner looks great, but your granite looks like dessert -- really, it looks like an Oreo cheesecake! I love your backsplash, too. I would never get tired of that one because of all the different shapes and patterns the eye can pick out. And of course the MOP is quietly, yet brilliantly, beautiful.

what is the shape and pattern of your tiles, please?

    Bookmark   November 10, 2013 at 10:06PM
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williamsem

Oooo, Oreo cheesecake! Now I will crave that until I can snag a piece :-)

The only place I could find the diamond shape MOP was online at builderelements.com. The price is actually pretty good, though higher than I wanted to spend (but honestly, as soon as I realized MOP would be my best match I knew my budget was going to take a beating). I just LOVE the pattern. Sadly the install got messed up, the sheets were not lined up right and it all has to come out to be redone. I'm hoping for a black Friday deal to reorder. The website was great to work with, they follow up by email, and answered my questions. Make sure you order an extra sheet and inspect the sheets carefully, it's a natural product so there may be pieces you don't like. I had on average 1-2 per sheet I pulled off, but for the price I'll take it!

    Bookmark   November 11, 2013 at 12:28AM
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deedles

Okay, the meatballs look mouth-wateringly great and I want some, but WHAT? That back splash has to come off and be replaced? Did I read that right? Yup, I did. What the heck happened? Did you post something and I missed it? It's so pretty, what a bummer.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2013 at 3:05PM
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andreak100

williamsem - have I mentioned how much I love your kitchen? Ah, yes, I think that I have...but really, just so lovely.

Your meatballs & sauce recipe sounds much like mine (down to moistening the breadcrumbs), only I use some Turkish pepper that I bought when we were in Istanbul and toss my meatballs in the oven to brown them rather than on the cooktop.

Looks delicious...I think that we're all heading over to your house for dinner! ;-)

    Bookmark   November 11, 2013 at 4:57PM
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williamsem

Oh, Deedles, yes, it needs to come out. I think that was all happening during one of your big decision times so it could have slipped by you, and understandably so! Instead of locking the sheets together to make the continuous pattern, they were installed in straight lines and the gaps were filled in with loose tiles. See below. But I have been lucky, and if my biggest kitchen remodel problem is an extra $600 or so in tile (he is ripping out and fixing the wall) and paying a new installer then I really can't be that upset. My GC is nice and does good work, but some of the finishing pretty stuff is not his strong point. If I had picked plain subways like I had initially thought, probably no problems at all.

Thanks, andreak1000! When I scroll past the before pics I almost can't believe it's the same kitchen, even though the layout changes were limited to mostly a few inches here and there, and moving the fridge.

Haven't tried the oven method yet, though I understand it's great. We so rarely eat red meat, let alone fried or comfort food, that I can't justify loosing that great crusty sear and grease to be healthier or easier.

They are definitely grandmas meatballs, but I'm glad I was a little off on the sauce with the diced tomatoes. I probably would have been sobbing into my pasta if it tasted like hers, it's only been a little over a year and we were pretty close for most of my life. Less so the last number of years while she lived in FL, but being the oldest grandchild I had many expiriences and memories that the younger ones just didnt have, especially with my grandfather who passed away when I was 12.

It's going to be a while before I make this again, I haven't cried so much in many months. Wasn't expecting that, though I knew I'd think of grandma.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2013 at 11:31PM
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