This Puglian version of the ubiquitous meatballs in tomato sauce is made interesting by the addition of dandelion greens. The greens add an element of texture and a slight bitterness, which counteracts the sweetness of the meatballs. Serve Meatballs with Tomato Sauce and Greens (see photo on the next spread) with a medium-bodied red wine, such as Negroamaro or Nero di Troia.
1. In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, ground pork, egg, bread pieces, pecorino cheese, parsley, salt, and pepper. Mix until just combined (do not overmix). Tear off golfball–sized pieces and shape them into meatballs.
2. In a large pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot (but not smoking), add the meatballs to the pan and cook them until they are browned on all sides.* Remove them from the pan and place them on a paper towel to drain.
3. Bring a large stockpot of salted water to a boil. Add the dandelion greens and boil for 2 minutes, or until the greens start to wilt. Remove the stockpot from the heat and transfer the greens to a strainer. Discard the water.
4. In the now-empty stockpot, combine the tomato sauce and the cooked greens and bring to a boil. Add the hot meatballs. Stir the mixture together and cook for 2 minutes. Serve hot, either over pasta or in the form of meatball sandwiches on fresh bread.
Copyright © 2010 Viktorija Todorovska. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without express written permission from the publisher.