Had this yesterday (a Sunday, I love the slow cooker for Sundays!) served over rice with broccoli and a salad for sides. I was looking for a way to use up some canned pumpkin, and although I was a little hesitant when I saw this recipe, it smelled and turned out great. I really liked the texture and flavor of the sauce. I would not add the sugar as FurryLoo suggested. We liked it as is. The meatball part of the recipe comes out to about 3 "medium-smallish" meatballs per person if you are going by the suggested 12 servings. I was OK with just 3 meatballs, but if I was having guests or using this for meatball sandwiches I would probably make a little extra.
I halved the recipe (kept the spice amounts in the meatballs the same though). I also lightened the recipe a bit by using only 1 T of olive oil and using half beef and half turkey. Still needed to have some of the extra fat skimmed off the top. The sauce is very interesting, and I liked that it was less acidic than the usual all tomato sauce. The meatballs had a nice flavor to them. Cooked just fine in 4.5 hours on high in a crockpot.
This smelled wonderful while cooking. I used frozen premade meatballs and cooked them in the sauce on the stove. The sauce was very thick and rich. Went well over noodles. The 5 year old thought the meatballs were great. My S.O. thought it was Ok, adult daughter didnt care for them and I liked them.
Forgot one crucial ingredient! Add 1 tablespoon sugar to the pumpkin/tomato mix.