Foods | Cooking
Hints & Tips
This delicious Veal Meatballs recipe and photos were shared with me by Karen
Calanchini, Food Stylist and Photographer, of Redding, CA.
Karen says, "Very tasty dish with low calorie meatballs. If dieting, leave off the parmesan cheese
for an even lower-calorie dish."
Veal Meatballs with Orzo Recipe
Yields: 4 generous servings
Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 40 min
1.25 pounds ground veal*
1/2 teaspoon basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/2 teaspoon instant minced onion
1/2 teaspoon salt
Black pepper to taste
Tomato Sauce (see recipe below)
Orzo (see recipe below)
Garnishes (see below)
* If you can't find ground veal, substitute lean ground turkey.
Preheat oven broiler.
In a medium-size bowl, combine ground veal, egg, basil leaves,
fennel seeds, instant minced onion, salt, and pepper. Shape into equal-size
meatballs (whichever size you prefer). NOTE: I make my meatballs about the size of a ping-pong
ball. If you make them larger, it will take longer for them to cook.
Place prepared meatballs on a broiler rack in a single layer.
Broil 5 minutes, Using tongs, carefully turn the meatballs over and broil
another 5 minutes or until done. NOTE: Watch carefully, as
they cook fast. Remove from oven and set aside.
Prepare Tomato Sauce. Add the veal meatballs to the simmering tomato sauce and simmer 5 minutes to heat through.
While Tomato Sauce simmers, prepare the Orzo.
To serve, divide cooked orzo on individual serving plates. Ladle
the tomato sauce and meatball over the top. Garnish with fresh parsley and
Parmesan Reggiano cheese.
NOTE: You will have enough
Tomato Sauce and Meatballs left over for serving with another pasta dish or to
freeze for later use. Tomato Sauces freeze well for about one (1) month.
Makes 4 generous servings.
1 cup chopped
garlic cloves, minced
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes or more to taste
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper (red or yellow bell pepper may be substituted)
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 cups crushed canned Italian plum
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
Salt and freshly-ground
black pepper to taste
In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, heat olive oil. Add
onion, garlic, and red pepper flakes; sauté approximately 4 minutes, stirring
frequently, until onion is soft. Add bell pepper and celery; sauté 4 minutes,
stirring frequently until pepper has softened slightly. Reduce heat to
medium-low; stir in tomatoes, tomato paste, and wine vinegar. Season with salt
and pepper to taste. Cook, stirring occasionally, for approximately 10 minutes or until sauce has reduced
and thickened slightly. NOTE: I prefer to cook my sauce a
little longer than this on low heat so that the flavors can meld. If you are in
a hurry, this works.
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 cup uncooked orzo (rice shaped pasta)
Heat chicken broth in a medium-size saucepan until rapidly
boiling. Add orzo and cook approximately 8 minutes until al dente (firm to bit,
but tender). Remove from heat and drain in a colander. Place drained orzo into a
warm bowl, fluff with a fork, cover, and keep warm until ready to serve.
Freshly-grated Parmesan Reggiano cheese