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Succulent Italian Meatballs in five, easy steps

Last week, I posted the first of ten of my most beloved Italian recipes, all of which I learned from my grandmothers.  My paternal grandmother, Nonna Rita, a powerful, feisty woman from Pavia, favored recipes that were simple but delightful.  Below you’ll find the recipe for her famous Italian Meatballs, a scrumptious main dish that I faithfully make for family and friends.


 1.5 lbs ground turkey (or ground beef, if you prefer)

1 egg

¼ cup flat parsley, chopped

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1 slice of white bread soaked in milk

¼ cup of grated parmesan cheese

½ cup breadcrumbs

Pinch of salt, pepper, nutmeg

3 tablespoons olive oil, divided

¼ cup dry white wine

tk cup chicken broth

Mix the first 8 ingredients in a bowl.  Form the meat into small balls and coat them in breadcrumbs.

Cooking Options

 OPTION 1: In a nonstick skillet, heat the olive oil.  Brown the meatballs on both sides (approximately 2 minutes each).  Add the white wine.  Reduce the heat and add a few tablespoons of chicken broth (be careful not to drown the meatballs in the broth, as they’ll become mushy).  Once it is completely absorbed, remove from the heat and serve.  TOTAL COOKING TIME: 15 minutes

OPTION 2:  Replace the olive oil with vegetable oil and fill a frying pan to the top with the oil.  When very hot, deep fry the meatballs.  (The meatballs will be much crunchier, but the calorie count will of course be higher!)  TOTAL COOKING TIME: 10 minutes

OPTION 3: Omit the breadcrumbs and place the meatballs in simmering tomato sauce.  Cook the meat slowly, and serve over pasta.  TOTAL COOKING TIME: 30 minutes

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*Looking for a great side dish to serve with these meatballs?  Consider serving a salad made with the following ingredients: arugula, sliced peaches, shaved fennel, slivered almonds, diced beets, goat cheese, and raspberry vinaigrette. 

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