It seems appropriate to add this recipe this time of year given the red face of my vampire looking baby 🙂 The first time I gave meatballs to Oscar he was only 7 months old. Yes they were messy but they were delicious lovely fun and not only did he clear his plate, he also looked for more.
These little meatballs of yumminess are the size of a cherry tomato and are so quick and easy to make. They are loaded with healthy vitamins from all the lovely tomatoes and bell pepper all blended into that delicious sauce. At 7 months Oscar ate 2 meatballs so the dish actually makes quite a few more dinners than the 10 I have listed.
This dish freezes really well and now that he is 18 months old I usually put 4 meatballs into little containers with a little cooked spaghetti and some sauce and freeze. Take out the night before and defrost in your fridge.
1 Egg (for egg free – replace with 1 tablespoon of flaxseed in 3 tablespoons of hot water)
1/2 Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
1 Tablespoon Rapeseed Oil (or olive oil)
1 Small White Onion Finely Chopped
1 Red Bell Pepper
1 tablespoon Unsalted Tomato Purée
1 Tin Tomatoes
2 Teaspoons Apple Cider Vinegar
1/4 Teaspoon English Mustard
1/2 Cup Milk of your choice
10 Leaves Fresh Basil
How to make it...
To make the Meatballs
Gently fry onion in a little olive or rapeseed oil until it is nice and soft. Add the garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes on a medium heat.
When cooked add to a mixing bowl along with all the remaining meatball ingredients and mix really well.
Take about a tablespoon of the mixture and using your hands roll into little meatballs. They should be about the size of a cherry tomato.
When you are finished place all the meatballs on a plate, cover with clingfilm and place into the fridge for about 1/2 an hour while you make your sauce.
To make the Sauce
Heat the oil over a medium heat and gently fry the onion and pepper until soft and caramelised. This should take about 8 minutes.
Add the tomato purée, tin of tomatoes, apple cider vinegar and mustard and stir really well.
Pour your mixture into a blender and whizz up until it is really smooth, then pour back into your saucepan.
Add the milk, stir well and heat up until the sauce starts to bubble, then turn the heat down to a simmer.
Add your meatballs to the sauce. Its important not to stir them so that they don’t break up. (Lesson learnt the hard way!). Cover your pan and leave to simmer for about 20 minutes or until the meatballs are cooked through. You can take one out and check it by cutting in half.
Serve with some pasta of your choice. My little one loves spaghetti. Just make sure to cut them into 3 to make it easier for them to eat.
To serve finely chop the basil and sprinkle all over.