Original Recipe Sicilian Succo (Meatballs & Sauce)

Total Time
4hrs 45mins
Prep 45 mins
Cook 4 hrs

I was born in a small mining town in southern Illinois. The village had a predominate Italian population. Spaghetti was a staple part of their diet. The red marina sauce that they poured over the spaghetti was called succo. This was a time before air conditioning, and all the windows in their houses wee wide open during the summer time. If your nostrils caught a whiff of their succo cooking would make your taste buds dance. If that caught a whiff of their home made cheese, they would dance even harder. To taste a plate of this delicacy was a real thrill. My best friend was Italian, and we did our homework together. I had occasion to sample this delicious morsel frequently. When my friend’s mother placed a plate in front of me and said “mange,” I immediately became fluent in Italian. Over the years, I have craved this taste. I looked everywhere for a recipe, but there was none anywhere. I couldn’t have asked her for a recipe because she didn’t have one. She couldn’t explain to how to make it because she couldn’t speak English. She had brought the recipe from Sicily in her memory. I recalled some of the ingredients. I found a recipe site on the net that if you fed the ingredients it would construct recipes using these ingredients. I got close but not close enough. With the help of some Italian friends, I was finally able to construct a recipe of the greatest spaghetti in the world. This recipe is the fruits of my labor. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. Note from UnknownChef86: This is a recipe I adopted in 2006.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. In a heavy sauce pan mix together garlic, tomato sauce, tomato paste, parsley and basil.
  2. Bring sauce to a boil and turn down the heat to simmer.
  3. In a large bowl mix together the ground beef, ground pork, bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, garlic powder and parsley.
  4. Shape into balls the size of a golf ball.
  5. Try to make 40 meat balls.
  6. In a skillet, fry meatballs in hot olive oil until brown.
  7. Combine the sauce mixture and the meat balls and simmer over low heat for another four hours.
Most Helpful

Awesome, truly superb. My inlaws are Sicilain. They were surprised that I could make such a good dish. The fresh herbs set this off. Of course, they would use nothing different. Nest time, I will use fresh ripe Italian tomatoes.

Jane7071 September 29, 2003

This is it. The real thing. Authenic. I have been searching for this recipe for a long time. I finally found it, and prepared it. I was better than any other succo that I have ever tasted.

Benjamin Duckworth September 24, 2003

The meatballs with this were wonderful and delicious. Very nice simple flavors. But although I used top quality fresh herbs and tomatoes, I found the sauce itself too bitter, and lacking in depth. I ended up adding a pinch of brown sugar and a sprinkling of baking soda to neutralize some of the acid, and also let it simmer for an hour or so after adding a cup of good cabarnet. The meatball formula, though, is quite good. I will definitely use it again.

moxie January 09, 2004