1⁄4 cup pine nuts, baked for 3-4 min. in a 400° F oven
1⁄2 teaspoon kosher salt
1⁄2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Basic tomato sauce:
1⁄4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 Spanish onion, chopped in 1⁄4-inch dice
4 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
3 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves,
or 1 tablespoon dried
1⁄2 medium carrot, fi nely shredded
2 (28-ounce) cans peeled whole tomatoes,
crushed by hand and juices reserved
For the meatballs: In a shallow bowl, soak the bread
cubes in water to cover for a minute or two. Drain the
bread cubes and squeeze with your fi ngers to press out
the excess moisture.
In a large bowl, combine the bread cubes, beef, eggs,
garlic, Pecorino Romano, parsley, toasted pine nuts,
salt, and pepper and mix with your hands to incorporate.
With wet hands, form 12 to 15 meatballs, each about the
size of a golf ball.
In a large, heavy-bottomed skillet, heat 1 cup oil until
smoking. Cook the meatballs in the oil until golden brown
and cooked through, working in batches if necessary to
avoid overcrowding the pan. Remove the meatballs to a
plate lined with paper towels and keep warm.
For the tomato sauce: In a 3-quart saucepan, heat the
olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, cook
until soft, and light golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes.
Add the thyme and carrot and cook 5 minutes more,
until the carrot is quite soft. Add the tomatoes and
juice and bring to a boil, stirring often. Lower the heat
and simmer for 30 minutes until as thick as hot cereal.
Season with salt and serve. This sauce holds 1 week in
the refrigerator or up to 6 months in the freezer.
1) Bring 6 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot and add
2 tablespoons salt. Add the pasta and cook according to
the package instructions.
2) Meanwhile, in a 10- to 12-inch saut
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