Tom Petty knew what he was talking about. Which is why I decided to follow suit.
Ever since my Bubba (read: grandma) made me some yummy meatballs last week, I've been craving the warm, comforting, way-too-full feeling of home-cooked ground meat smothered on some good old carbs. So I picked up some ground turkey from Trader Joe's and invited over some friends. We wined and dined and whined some more, and then followed with chocolate covered strawberries. There was no more whining after that. Anyways, I'll cut to the chase. Below, find the secret to meaty delight.
*I worked off this recipe from foodnetwork.com (shameless plug for Barefoot Contessa, because she da bomb), but made do with what I had on hand.
1 lb ground turkey or beef - we used turkey this time ($6.42)
3 garlic cloves ($0.30)
Red pepper flakes
Hard/stale bread - we used a baguette stub but you could also just buy bread crumbs
1 egg ($0.20)
Tomato basil sauce - premade in glass jar ($1.99)
Half an onion ($0.40)
Whole wheat spaghetti ($1.50)
Cheap red wine ($1.99)
Garlic powder (optional)
Flour (you should have this)
Salt and pepper
The Grand Total: $12.80 for 5 people, $2.56 per person
Chop the garlic. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a small saute pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until soft, about 1 1/2 minutes.
In the meantime, use a cheese grater to grate the stale bread into bread crumbs. Whisk the egg in a large bowl. Add the browned garlic and meat. Mix together until combined. Begin adding bread crumbs 1 tablespoon at a time until the mixture just holds together. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. (The recipe I read recommended that you cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, but I was hungry so I ignored that tidbit). Sprinkle with some flour, 21 seasoning salute, and garlic powder. Form the meat into 1 1/2-inch balls.
Heat the remaining 1 cup of oil in a large saute pan over high heat. Add the meatballs and fry until golden brown on all sides. Carefully remove to a baking sheet lined with paper towels.
While the meatballs are cooking, chop the onion and, using olive oil, saute it over medium heat until it starts to brown. Pour in the pasta sauce and add about 1/4 cup of red wine. Plop in the meatballs. When it's all heated and wonderful, pile it on top of your pasta and call it a day!