As I was making these meatballs, I was a bit worried about
posting the recipe. My mother told me
the recipe, as my grandmother had given it to her. I didn’t know if there was some sort of
embargo or block on passing it out for all to see. Would I be blacklisted by my family and never
given any recipes again? No more Gnocchi
secrets or Lasagna tips? No more making tortellini’s
for the holidays? I didn’t know what to
do. Then last night I was watching Molto
Mario (Re-Runs on fine living!) and the weight was lifted! Mario made meatballs almost the exact same
way as my family! This did 2 things, for
one, it made me proud because Mario is as authentic as you can get for Italian food,
and 2, it released the ban on the recipe because it is no secret, its already
out there for the world to see via Mario Batali.

We were making sandwiches with these meatballs, so we took
out some leftover sauce and dough balls from the freezer. You can buy some nice crusty bread for this
but PLEASE make your own sauce! The one
we are using is leftover pizza sauce from this post (you can even see me
putting it into the same pickle jar in the post). Even if you just open a can
of tomatoes and put it in a pot with some garlic and oil, it will be much
better then most jarred sauces.

When the dough thawed, we put it out to rise. We were unsure if it would actually rise but
it came out pretty good. This dough is
also a leftover. This time from the
cheeesteak post.

The sauce has thawed

All the ingredients are ready. I can’t tell you exact amounts because there
is no science, but if you put all these ingredients in a bowl something good is
bound to come out. Then do it a few
times and each time you will get to know the amounts a bit better.

This is what I always thought was the secret ingredient, but
Mario sure enough used wet bread too!

You can’t really tell from the picture, but this bread is
very wet.

Mix, but don’t over mix!

This is my preferred meatball size.

The Rolls came out great.
Look at that cavity structure. Mmmm

My mother has always broiled the meatballs. Just brown the
tops then flip them and brown again. Mario
browned them in a frying pan.

What they did have in common is letting them sit in the hot sauce
for awhile before serving.

Oh yea we made some fries too. Just a frozen bag

Not many places break up the meatballs in a sandwich. It’s the way to go. Seriously.
Don’t you hate getting a huge meatball chunk in a meatball sub, then not
having any in the next bite? Or what
about them falling right out? It’s the worst. Break up your meatballs people!

Provolone on the bottom, Mozzarella on the top.

That’s the perfect amount of burn. Not to brag or anything.

This was a good lunch

To save some, put in the freezer separately for a half hour,
then put them in a zip lock.

There is nothing more comforting then having a bag o’
meatballs in the freezer.


About 50 / 50 of ground beef and ground turkey
Wet bread

Put in as much of each thing as you want, refine it to your
tastes. Don’t over mix. Broil until browned on each side, flipping
after the first side is browned. Freeze when
cooled or put in sauce on low heat for a half hour before serving


  1. Hey Dan, I made Spaghetti and Meatballs today for all of Eddie’s family. The only problem was that my oven broke and I of course freaked out, but none the less made them in the fry pan and although not as pretty VERY tasty! Thanks!!

  2. Just finished eating these! They turned out great. I had to cook them a little longer than you said, but from your photos, it looks like I made my balls bigger than your balls…
    Thanks for the inspiration, and in this case, simplifying something that others over complicate.

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